Start your small-group tour to Chichen Itza and Ek Balam, respectively, with pickup from your hotel in Playa del Carmen and the Riviera Maya. Enjoy a light breakfast aboard an air-conditioned minivan during the drive to one of the most renowned archaeological sites of the Yucatán Peninsula.
On arrival, walk with your guide during a 2-hour tour and view impressive structures built during the Maya Empire. View the Kukulkan Pyramid, aka El Castillo (The Castle), as well as El Caracol, also known as the Observatory. See the Plaza of a Thousand Columns, Temple of the Descending God, Temple of the Jaguar, Temple of the Warriors, and the ball court. You'll then have 1 hour to explore the site on your own. (Souvenirs are available for purchase.)
Continue your full-day itinerary to Ek Balam, stopping en route at nearby Cenote Hubiku. Learn about this sacred place, once considered the road to the underworld for the Maya people. Take a refreshing swim in the emerald waters, which reach a depth of 196 feet (60 meters). Spend 45 minutes of free time, followed by a 45-minute lunch at the on-site restaurant, with an optional visit to the tequila museum.
Upon reaching Ek Balam (meaning 'Black Jaguar' in in the Mayan language), tour the well-preserved archaeological site and learn about its ancient Maya royalty. See the tomb of its ruler, housed in the Acropolis, and marvel at the inscriptions. Other important buildings you'll see include the twin pyramids and the ball court. Admire these striking structures and their fine and delicate craftsmanship.
Your tour concludes with transport back to your hotel.