• Location: Playa del Carmen, Mexico
  • Duration: 9 hours (approx.)
From USD $ 69.00 View price calendar

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Escape multitudes of tourists on a tranquil full-day tour of Chichen Itza from Playa del Carmel. Experience one of the world’s wonders without the noise and hassle of crowds on this early access Viator Exclusive tour. Follow a certified archeological guide on an ancient adventure to sacred cenotes, colossal pyramids and a vast ball court. Visualize the prosperous Mayan empire as you gain insight into one of the ancient world’s most powerful civilizations with captivating commentary from your knowledgeable guide.


  • Enjoy early access to Chichen Itza with an expert archeologist guide
  • Skip the crowds at this World Heritage site, and visit parts of the ruins that other tours don't include
  • See the Kukulkan Pyramid, ball court and sacred cenote
  • Learn about the mysteries surrounding the site and experience its majesty with your specialized guide
  • This Viator Exclusive can't be booked anywhere else, so don't miss out!

Why Our Insiders Chose This Tour

What You Can Expect

Viator Exclusive: Early Access to Chichen Itza from Playa del Carmen with Archaeologist

Beat the crowds and explore the well-preserved site of Chichen Itza!

Rise early and depart from your Playa del Carmen hotel in a comfortable and air-conditioned minivan. Arrive at the colossal Chichen Itza, the ancient capital of the Mayan empire, and follow your guide as you begin your archeological adventure through the atmospheric ruins.
Wander through the perfectly preserved ruins in relative solitude, listening to the insightful background information provided by your expert guide. Learn of Chichen Itza’s pivotal role in Mayan society, and why it is still considered a scared place of worship today.
Discover the intricate processes undergone to unearth and excavate the magnificent monuments of the site, learning about how archeological discoveries provided Chichen Itza with UNESCO World Heritage status. In the context of history, philosophy and cosmology, the symmetrical staircases and intricate carvings of the ruins will suddenly become clear.
Gaze upwards at the legendary Kulkulcan Pyramid, or El Castillo, a sight you’re sure to recognize as one of Mexico’s most famous. Gain insight into the astronomical knowledge that influenced the construction of the temple. 
Venture to the sacred cenote, passing lush jungle and awakening your senses to the call of exotic birds and the eerie resonance of jaguar whistles. Peer down at the natural sinkhole, listening as your guide explains that the pool was used as a sacrificial site in the past. Archeologists recently unearthed human skeletons and jewelry to confirm the gruesome purpose of this natural wonder.
Conclude your tour by visiting the enigmatic ball court, whose acoustics continue to mystify scientific experts. Stand 150 feet (46 meters) from someone on the opposite side of the ball court and hear their whispers loud and clear.
After your enlightening experience, start your journey back to Playa del Carmen. Conclude your early access tour way before the day is out so you can spend the afternoon relaxing on the blissful beach.

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Customer Reviews

Judith F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2018

Srs. Super Frank and driver Tony were awesome guides. Felt totally safe on the long drive to/from Chichen Itza. Learned so very, very much from Frank. I was super interested in the topic of Mayan culture anyway just read the book 1491 by Mann but Frank made the explanation of how people lived and what they were probably like so understandable - for the most part same human instincts that we have today - people are people. The only kink in our trip was that we are staying in Cozumel for a few weeks and there is no ferry early enough to get us to Playa del Carmen for a 6:00 pickup at central hotel so we had to stay the night before the trip in a Playa hotel. But it was well worth that extra expense. I wouldn't have missed it for anything. I don't have time to repeat all the good things others have said about Frank and the value of this trip - but I second them all.

Tonya W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2018

Absolutely worth the early rise, beat the heat and the crowds. Marcos was our guide, he was incredibly knowledgable about Mayan culture and Chichen Itza's history. The tour was a good mix of guided tour and personal time, we learned a lot and had a great time! Would highly recommend this tour.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2018

I'm so glad that I booked this tour. Marco was an amazing guide and so knowledgeable about the Mayan culture and Chitchen Itza. Getting there early was definitely the way to go, no crowds or queuing on entry, just amazing views of Chitchen Itza and the surrounding area without millions of others tourist ruining your pictures.
On leaving Chichen Itza, when everyone else was arriving, we went to a mayan village for a traditional lunch.
Overall a fantastic trip with an amazing guide, definitely a must do whist on holiday in Mexico.

Carol F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2018

I did not book ahead for this tour before arriving in Mexico and had not problem making reservations on-line after arriving at our resort. Because of the early access, our pick-up was scheduled for 5:10 am before other pickups. The tour bus was comfortable and was able to sleep after we transferred to the bus. Our guide Frank was 5th generation Mayan and friendly, informative and provided insights into Chichen Itza and Mayan culture. Getting to the ruins early to avoid the crowds that arrived as we were leaving was well worth the early morning rise. The included lunch buffet at a nearby establishment was good.

Chelsey J

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2018

The guide was very knowledgeable! Loved him!

Michael V B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2018

Our tour guide was knowledgeable and we thoroughly enjoyed the tour of Chichen Itza. Our guide David explained all the buildings, their uses and their restorations. The only 1 negative thing I have to mention is that it was nearly 12 hours from pick up to drop off at our hotel. The duration listed on the tour said 9hours so we expected to be back earlier.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2017

Sara was full of knowledge and very amazing. The lunch stop was beautiful and the food was good. We wish we had a little more time on our own for pictures but the overall experience was absolutely fantastic!

Diana P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2017

This was the best tour that I've ever been on! My friend who joined me on the trip agreed. Marco, our tour guide, was incredibly knowledgeable and I walked away having learned a great deal!!! Omar, our driver, was also really great and the trip was smooth I was easily able to sleep on both trips. I am very excited to continue learning more about Mayan history and culture after this phenomenal experience. It is all so fascinating. This tour is so incredibly worth it. A steal for the price! There are some opportunities to buy things on the tour too which I normally hate but was actually great this time because the money was going straight back to the Mayan community and the handicrafts were really special. Expect to be away until 4pm or so and just relax and enjoy the experience and the vast amount of knowledge at your disposal. These people know how to run a tour! I've had many friends visit Chichen Itza without a tour or with a different company and they didn't know half of the very awesome things that I told them. Definitely take this tour!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2017

This was one of the best tours I have ever taken anywhere in the world. Having early access an Archeologist to share their knowledge and background was well worth the extra cost and being up at 4:00 am! Marco, our archaeologist guide, was wonderful, friendly and full of knowledge and ideas to share with us. We also enjoyed the commentary from Frank, our in-van host from Playa.

After the ruins we went to a Mayan restaurant gift shop, and enjoyed a homemade meal and browsed some chotchkie's before the long drive back to Playa Del Carmen.

My main note is expect this to be a FULL day, of around 12 hours from pickup to drop off.

My only feedback was that somehow we had a mix up with pickup and they were about 35 minutes late getting us, and there seemed to be some confusion on where we should meet. Also, we were gone about 12 hours, while the tour lists 9 here on Viator. My only suggestion is maybe updating this information. Also, we got lunch instead of breakfast as a meal.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2017

This tour was great! Our guide, Frank, was so knowledgeable. Explained how long it would take and said we could have time to sleep on the drive because it was so early. He walked us through some parts of Chichen Itza then gave us time to explore on our own. After we went to a local shop, they encouraged us to shop there to support the locals. Then we all dinned together before driving back to our hotels. All in all this was a great tour, wish we had a bit more time to explore Chichen Itza as opposed to shopping, but I would still recommend this. Pro tip: Bring bug spray! It was extremely humid and many small bugs fly around the area.

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