How to Visit the Mayan Ruins Without the Crowds

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Dating back thousands of years in some cases, and shrouded in mystery, the Mayan ruins are among Mexico’s most visited sites. Sometimes that popularity can mean too many people, however, so here are some ways to see the ruins without the crowds.

Early-Access Tours
One of the best ways to experience the magic and mystery of the Mayan ruins of the Yucatan Peninsula—without feeling like you’re at Grand Central Station during rush hour—is by visiting before most tour buses arrive. Early-access tours of Tulum, Chichen Itza, or Coba ensure you’ll be one of the first visitors there, so you can get that perfect photo without all the tourists in it. Of course, you’ll also get expert insight into Mayan civilization from an archaeologist tour guide. It’s worth the early-morning wakeup.

VIP Tours
There’s no better way to experience a bucket-list site like Chichen Itza than on a VIP tour. You’ll feel like royalty as you head to the ruins from your Riviera Maya hotel in a luxurious private vehicle. With an archaeologist guide at your side, you’ll breeze past long entrance lines at the Mayan site to your own private entrance, and after your visit, you can watch the sun set over the ancient Mayan city while sipping unlimited margaritas on a private terrace.
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Viator Exclusive: Early Access to Chichen Itza with a Private Archaeologist

Discover the ruins at Chichen Itza with a private archaeologist guide on this all-day Viator exclusive tour. Skip the lines and the crowds with early morning access and view parts of the ruins that most traditional tours don't visit.  Learn about Mexico's past through your guide's insightful commentary about this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Duration: 10 hours
From
USD70.00
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  • Duration: 10 hours
From
USD70.00

Chichen Itza Small-Group Tour with Private Entrance

Explore Chichen Itza with a small group, entering through the Mayaland Resort to skip the long entry lines. On this full-day excursion, follow an expert guide through the Pyramid of Kukulcán and the rest of the UNESCO World Heritage Site for 2 hours. Enjoy a buffet lunch of regional and international dishes. Spend the rest of the day at the resort hotel swimming or strolling through the botanical gardens. Plus, you can relax at Viator's exclusive on-site hospitality suite.
  • Duration: 11 hours
From
USD89.00
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  • Duration: 11 hours
From
USD89.00

Viator Exclusive: Early Access to Tulum Ruins with an Archeologist

Discover the ancient Mayan ruins of Tulum with an archaeologist on this full-day tour and enter the site early, before the crowds. Explore the ruins, set upon a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea, on this Viator Exclusive available nowhere else. Visit all parts of the Tulum ruins and stop at the nearby beach for an opportunity to swim. Pickup and drop-off at Riviera Maya and Cancun hotels is included.
  • Duration: 9 hours
From
USD39.00
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  • Duration: 9 hours
From
USD39.00

Viator VIP: Chichen Itza Tour and Light and Sound Show Including Mayan Appetizers and Luxury Transport

Uncover the ancient mysteries of Chichen Itza on a day and night tour from Cancun or Riviera Maya. Sail past long lines at the sacred site with an archeologist guide, and then watch the sun set over the iconic pyramid of the park, sipping bottomless margaritas and feasting on Mexican tapas at a luxurious nearby resort. Afterward, enjoy a light and sound show and see the history of the Maya empire brought to life through color and music. Convenient round-trip hotel transportation plus access to Viator's hospitality suite is included in the tour.
  • Duration: 12 hours
From
USD175.00
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  • Duration: 12 hours
From
USD175.00

Cancun Super Saver: Exclusive Early Access to Chichen Itza plus Early Access to Tulum Ruins with an Archaeologist Guide

Combine two top tours at one discounted price over two days with a Cancun Super Saver. This Viator Exclusive provides early access to Chichen Itza and Tulum, two of Mexico’s most popular Maya landmarks, before most of the crowds arrive. An archaeologist guide will lead you around each site in the morning, providing fascinating facts about ancient civilizations as you check out ruins like Chichen Itza’s El Castillo, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and admire Tulum’s stunning setting on the turquoise waters of the Caribbean. Lunch is included on both tours.
  • Duration: 2 days
From
USD69.00
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  • Duration: 2 days
From
USD69.00

Open the Gate to Chichen Itza: Early-Access Tour with Private Entrance

Open the Gate to Chichen Itza and be one of its first visitors of the day on this full-day tour from Cancun. An archaeologist guide escorts your group through a private entrance and takes you around the UNESCO World Heritage Site’s most notable landmarks, including the Kukulcan Temple, Ball Game Court, and Temple of the Warriors. Meet a Maya priest, visit the Mayan Planetarium, and dig into a sumptuous buffet lunch. Luxury van transport and access to Viator's hospitality suite are included.
  • Duration: 11 hours
From
USD110.00
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  • Duration: 11 hours
From
USD110.00

Viator Exclusive: Chichen Itza at Your Own Pace Plus Access to Welcome Suite

Enjoy transport to Chichen Itza, a welcome suite in the Mayaland Resort and use of the resort’s facilities with this Viator Exclusive, available nowhere else! Travel to and from the UNESCO site by air-conditioned Mercedes Benz van. Upon arrival, a guide assists you in purchasing admission to Chichen Itza (own expense) and escorts you through a private entrance, allowing you to bypass the crowds waiting in line. Enter and leave the archaeological zone as you like, relax in the welcome suite and make use of Mayaland’s amenities. Bonus: a booklet of discounts included!
  • Duration: 10 hours
From
USD32.00
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  • Duration: 10 hours
From
USD32.00

Viator Exclusive: Coba Ruins Early Access Tour with an Archaeologist and Cenote Swim from Cancun

Explore the ancient ruins of Coba, including early morning access with an archeologist guide. Take this Viator exclusive tour, which can't be booked anywhere else, to discover one of Mexico's most spectacular ruins during this all-day excursion. Enjoy lunch and round-trip transportation from Cancun hotels. Climb Nohoch Mul, the tallest pyramid on the Yucatán Peninsula while learning about one of the largest settlements during the Classic period from your knowledgable guide. Swim in the refreshing waters at Aktun Chen cenote to cool off.
  • Duration: 10 hours
From
USD75.00
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  • Duration: 10 hours
From
USD75.00

Ek Balam Tour from Cancun Including Cenote Maya Park

Spend some time beyond Cancun exploring Ek Balam, one of the Yucatán's newer excavation sites. Embark on a guided tour of this ancient Mayan wonder, learning its history, wandering among its plazas and even scaling its main pyramid for incredible jungle views. Then continue on to Cenote Maya Park, where your choices for adventure are endless. Take a refreshing dip in natural pool, zipline through tropical forest canopy, rappel into a cave or shop for handmade Maya crafts. Savor a delicious meal of traditional Maya eats before returning to Cancun.
  • Duration: 11 hours
From
USD138.99
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  • Duration: 11 hours
From
USD138.99

Cancun Super Saver: Exclusive Chichen Itza and Coba Early Access Tours led by Archaeologist

Discover two of the Yucatan's most intriguing Maya archaeological sites—the UNESCO-listed Chichen Itza and the jungle-clad Coba—each under the guidance of a experienced archaeologist. Choose which ruins you'd like to visit first and then gain early access to both spread over two days, meaning you'll have them virtually to yourself. Explore the Temple of the Jaguars, scale the towering Nohoch Mul Pyramid and learn a ton about ancient Maya culture as you go. This exclusive 'super savor' combo trip even includes a refreshing dip in a natural sinkhole.
  • Duration: 2 days
From
USD151.20
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  • Duration: 2 days
From
USD151.20

Private Tour: Early Access to Tulum with an Archaeologist and Xel-Há or Xcaret from Cancun

Visit the ancient Maya city of Tulum early in the day and beat the crowds. Depart from Cancun for the drive to Tulum, where you'll tour the grounds with an experienced archaeologist who will fill you in on local Mayan history. Meander along the city's fortified wall, wander among temples and see the impressive el castillo. Then embark on one of two outings: explore underground caves where Mayan ceremonies were held in Xcaret or bicycle among tropical birds and go tubing in Xel-Há. Snorkel with colorful fish in both locales.
  • Duration: 12 hours
From
USD218.99
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  • Duration: 12 hours
From
USD218.99


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