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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.


  • Early-access Tulum tour with a private archaeologist — a Viator Exclusive
  • See Tulum in the early morning and beat the crowds
  • Discover the archaeological ruins and learn about excavations with the expertise of your guide
  • Enjoy a box lunch and round-trip hotel transportation
  • Bring sunscreen, hat, bathing suit and towel (for optional swimming at the beach)
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Viator Exclusive: Early Access to Tulum Ruins with an Archeologist

Tulum Ruins
© Supplier

Leave your Cancun or Riviera Maya hotel in the early morning aboard a vehicle with your guide for this Viator Exclusive tour. On the way, get to know your archaeological guide and your group.

Arrive at Tulum before the crowds, looking out over the Caribbean Sea from the perch of a cliff. Follow your guide for an in-depth tour of the Tulum ruins with a group of just 20 other people. Learn about the meaning of Tulum, the Mayan word for "wall," and the ancient Mayan civilization that occupied this site. 

Throughout the tour, the certified guide teaches you more about the political, commercial and military history of this important Mayan city. View the remains of the walled city's elaborate murals, painted blue and red on stark white walls. Imagine what life must have been like for the ancient Mayans who occupied this city as far back as the 13th century.

Stop at the nearby beach to relax and take an optional swim.

Return to your Riviera Maya or Cancun hotel in the early afternoon, eating a boxed lunch on the way back to your hotel. Spend the afternoon at your leisure while the rest of the crowds are just arriving at the Tulum ruins.

Please note: Bring a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen to help beat the heat for the duration of your tour. If you'd like to take a swim at the beach in Tulum, pack a swimsuit and towel, too.

Customer Reviews

Heyder V

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016



5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

I'm so glad I went early. There was nobody there and we had the place almost to ourselves. By the time we were getting ready to leave, the place was getting pretty packed. The guide was knowledgeable and patient.

Marie B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

It was well worth it to have early access to Tulum with a smaller group. As the day progresses the tourists multiply and with larger groups than ours. Our tour guide was amazing and so excited about his job. He made history come alive. Our driver and bus guide were wonderful as well. Tips are appreciated for each guide on your tours, so prepare for that.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

This tour was great. We were picked up, bright and early, at 5am from our hotel in the Hotel Zone. Arturo was our guide, and he was great -- very informative. The only downside was that our group was a mix of Spanish and English speakers, and Arturo was the only guide. This meant that he went back and forth translating between English and Spanish during the tour, which was a bit distracting. Doing this tour is definitely worth it, though, if nothing else because you arrive at Tulum as soon as it opens at 9am. You can admire the ruins without the crowds and get as many photographs as you want without throngs of tourists in the way. Arturo gave us background information and discussed the ruins for about 90 minutes and the remaining 90 minutes could be spent as you wish -- we chose to wander the beach and explore the other ruins. We were back at our hotel by 2pm, leaving the rest of the afternoon free to wander Cancun.

Oh, and there are tons of lizards all over the ruins -- quite a beautiful sight! Bring your camera.

Jeanette M J

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

I highly recommend the early access to Tulum with an archeologist tour. What a beautiful Mayan archeological site! We arrived early enough at Tulum to beat some of the incredible heat and humidity. The greatest advantage, however, is avoiding the hoards of fellow tourists who later descend on the site. The early access gives you the opportunity to experience and get a feel for Tulum's archtectural layout, religious and historical significance to the Mayan people, while also allowing for unimpeded photographic opportunities. Our archeologist guide was Marco, who was full of information regarding the site and expressed some very interesting and plausible theories regarding the significance of the building's carvings. The one I found most interesting being his theory on the first Mayan/European interaction given the age of the main temple structure and the carving of a bearded man in one of the friezes. Marco was very informative, excited to provide his knowledge of Mayan history, and more than willing to answer any and all questions asked. I would not hesitate to recommend this tour to other travelers who are truely interested in understanding Mayan culture and the archeological sites that they are looking at. A word of advice: dress in cool clothing, comfortable foot wear, and bring some water as it is still very hot even in the earlier hours of the day.

Caroline M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2016

Amiga Tours is a first-class company. The bus was clean, the driver and tour guide pleasant and knowledgable. The pace of the tour is relaxed with a 50 minute guided tour of the Tulum structures and then 2 hours on your own to explore. You receive a nice brown bag lunch with banana, juice, a sandwich and cookie. There are good restaurants and nice gift shops. Tulum is a national park, and is a much, much better experience than the circus at Chichen-Itza . There is a stop before arriving at the park where you can buy snacks and pay to use the toilet.

Helen M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

I loved Tulum. The tour was great. Miguel who gave the English one at the ruins was so knowledgeable and Arturo who led the Spanish one was funny and told us a great restaurant to eat ate at while there.

Edward S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

We cannot remember the individuals name that provided us with all of the amazing information on Talum and guided us on our excursion trip on Monday, May 30, 2016 pic up from the Riveria Maya Palace at 6:30am His knowledge was remarkable. Both he and the driver were so courteous and we were allowed time to spend doing what we wanted also going in the water, walking around a bit on our own, going to eat. I would definitely recommend doing this tour and it would be nice if we were able to request him again should we return but we know this may not be possible. Great deal, great tour guide and driver!

Ayesha H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

Amazing! My only issue was that I was picked up first at 5AM and by the time we picked up the rest of the sightseers and made it to Tulum it was 9AM and I was kind of drained by the long bus ride. But the tour itself was awesome. Conrado the guide was brilliant. He was very well informed, engaging and dedicated. He also used photographs to illustrate the sun and moon phenomena's that occur at the ruins. Wear a hat and keep hydrated. Highly recommended it!

Jennifer M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

Worth getting up super early for. Pick-up was from our hotel in Cancun and we where driven to the Tulum ruins in a nice air conditioned bus. They divided us up into 2 groups so we only had maybe 12 in our group in the end. The guide/Arch. was very informative on the history/culture. He made himself available for questions even after his part of the tour was done. We had enough time to explore the ruins on our own and visit the beach. There are tons of local trinket shops on the way out and a big official souvineer shop at the entrance/exit too. We were back at our hotel by 2:00 pm and had the rest of the afternoon to do whatever we wanted!

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