Ben Holmes United Kingdom
We almost nearly didn't get to go on the trip. The tour company asked us to confirm our booking with them twenty-four hours before the tour. We didn't think much of this as we assumed that we could use the hotel's wifi to confirm the booking and that would be it. However at the Grand Bahia Principe Coba there was no phone signal, and the wifi was quite frankly, terrible. We then had to get the hotel to ring the tour company and tell the tour rep to come and meet us, which meant waiting around in the lobby for the rep to arrive. However, it must be said the rep Gabi or Gaby was really nice and very clear about what we needed to bring and what time we would be getting picked up.
Our tour picked us up from our hotel on time, and we were put onto a mini van which then took us to a big coach to begin our tour. The tour guides were Gaytan pronounced 'guy tan' and Ramon. Gaytan began our tour introducing himself and perhaps giving us a talk about the Mayans, their culture, and their descendants today. He said to us, When you think of Mexico, what do you think of? Sombreros? Mariachi music? Tequila? Well we don't wear sombreros and we don't listen to Mariachi music. We have our own music, and we don't drink Tequila, because we simply don't like it. We have our own drinks. We don't speak Spanish at home, we have our own language. We are Mayans, not Mexicans. He then gave us an example of what the Mayan language sounded like, saying the same sentence in Spanish, Mayan and English.
The drive to Chichen Itza was about two and a half to three hours I think and the time was well spent listening to Guytan and Ramon talk about the history of the Mayan people and the appalling treatment they received from the Spanish, and even today how the Mayan people struggle to fight to protect their culture. We stopped off to a place where Mayans make genuine Mayan crafts to sell, Gaytan warned us that pretty much everything sold at the Chichen Itza site is fake and wanted to take us to a place where we could meet genuine Mayans and see their crafts up close and personal. Needless to say we bought a few things, and it felt good knowing our money was going to people who genuinely appreciated it. On top of that, the Mayan people were incredibly friendly and polite, and weren't pushy when it came to selling things.
When we got to Chichen Itza, it took me a few minutes to fully comprehend where I was. This place that I had wanted to visit for so many years was finally here in front of me! Gaytan took us around and once again provided us with incredibly detailed information about each part of the site, explaining to us what it was used for and what occurred there. It was truly amazing to be there and when we were hearing about the activities of the Mayans you could almost imagine being there with them. After going round all the parts of the site, we were given refreshments and some free time to wonder and explore.
The site is quite large, and although The Temple of Kukulkan gets the majority of the attention, there are other nice bits to explore. It is quite easy to get caught up taking pictures on one part of the site and not have enough time to wonder and explore the whole thing. However, you do go around most of the site with your tour guide, so you can use your free time to go back to get some extra photos of something you liked or go see some of the less visited parts of the site. As you can imagine, Chichen Itza is very busy and sometimes it was frustrating trying to get photographs because people kept walking in front of us! However, it is possible to get a people-free picture of The Temple of Kukulkan if you are quick! Perhaps if I were to say one negative, it would be that there were venders that sold these things that made fake jaguar sounds, and needless to say they got annoying very quickly, particularly when you are trying to listen to your tour guide.
After Chichen Itza, we went for some lunch at a restaurant and had a choice of international or regional cuisine. I asked for regional cuisine and asked for un poco de todo a bit of everything to which they happily obliged. The food was amazing, it was not stereotypical Mexican food, but regional Mayan food. After lunch we went to the cenote, not being a confident swimmer I decided not to swim as there was no shallow end although life jackets are provided however this didn't stop appreciating how beautiful the cenote is.
I would 100 recommend you come on this tour, even if you are not a huge history buff, the history to do with the Mayans is really amazing, the way their calendar works, how that links into the construction of the Temple of Kukulkan, and so many other things as well. This was definitely the highlight of my holiday in Mexico.
this trip was amazing! Visiting the ruins was not only great but the tour guide and others helping on the tour were awesome! You should definitely book this.
Very informative. Could have had more time on the second sight. Strathmore friendly and professional.
great tour with the great tour guides. They provide you with the water, corona beer, coffee, fresh bread from local bakeries, and they provide a great experience. I would highly recommend for anyone. If you speak Spanish or want to learn go with the Spanish guided tour its more smaller and more personal rather than the English one which is mostly about 20 people. I would also buy any items at the local shops in cancun or any other place the place the guides take you is a bit expensive and the places in Chichen Itza its also expensive.
Great tour, a very pleasant experience all around. Victor and his team made everything very easy, and he was incredibly informative. We learned a ton of great, interesting information that really made us appreciate what we were seeing. Everything was very punctual, and little things like having breakfast on the bus which was very good made things comfortable and pleasant. Bus was air conditioned and very comfortable. You stop to shop but it is only for 40 minutes so you don't spend long there, allowing you to get the full experience at Chichen Itza. One note, it is very hot at Chichen Itza and you are in the sun for most of the tour there so keep that in mind when thinking about dress / sunscreen. After Chichen Itza and lunch which was one of the best meals we had on the entire trip, you go to a sink hole that is really cool and is a lot of fun. Make sure to bring your bathing suit as we forgot ours and I slightly regret not going into the water. The total tour is 12-13 hours, so keep in mind when booking as it will take all day and you may want a more expedited tour. However, this tour was a great experience and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to spend a day seeing a bit more of Mexico than just the resort.
Fabulous tour guides
Information and pre-booking information were superb
Cancun passion has been very professional. They gave us interesting information throughout the tour. The buffet was really good. And when I have forgotten my camera in the bus, they were very helpful and delivered it to my hotel.
My family of 4, including 13-year-old twins, took this tour on July 28, 2015, and would highly recommend it to others. The tour operator, Cancun Passion, provided prompt pick-up at our resort and brought us to a central location to meet the coach. We were served coffee, juice, fruit and pastries, which made for a pleasant trip. We had a restroom/shopping stop for about 30 minutes prior to Chichen Itza, where we purchased some lovely crafts. Chichen Itza was amazing!! Our guide, Tony, provided excellent explanations of sites before we were given free time for pictures and lunch included in the price, aside from drinks. The history and sites are not to be missed!! We had an amazing cenote swim before heading back. This is a long day, but well worth it. The staff was professional and personable from start to finish. Tony taught us so much about Mayan history. This tour is highly recommended. Once again, I have had success in booking an excursion through viator!
I want to first acknowledge the local tour company who viator works with or who was at least the assigned local tour group. Evelyn was so accommodating and super nice. The email sent from Viator says to contact the local tour group 48 hours in advance. This, in my opinion, was not highlighted very well. We were also traveling on the 48 hour mark. So we did not contact them in time for our Monday tour. The company rescheduled us with no problem. Seeing the ruins is highly recommended. Our tour Cancun Passion was also fantastic. The guides Noe and Fernando were fabulous. Noe cares more about the history and is very knowledgeable. If you just want to take pictures you don't really need a guide. But it was really informative.
This tour was amazing!
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