Yaxchilan, Chiapas

Yaxchilan, in the state of Chiapas, is an archaeological center that has to be reached either by boat or by plane, being the boat the more economic way. This ancient Mayan site lies next to the Usumacinta River, which divides Mexico and Guatemala. Fr

To get to Yaxchilan, tourists have to go first to Frontera Corozal. From this point boats depart to Yaxchilan. Organized tours usually include the boat fare. Otherwise it is recommended to gather enough persons to share the price. The boat trip to Yaxchilan lasts 45 minutes and, while on it, beautiful landscapes can be admired.

The site features more than 100 structures that are divided into 3 groups: the Great Plaza, the Grand Acropolis, and the Small Acropolis. It is believed, according to studies, that the site existed from B.C. 250 through A.D. 900.

The Great Plaza is an open space surrounded by many structures, edifices or buildings. In Yaxchilan many steles or stone blocks have been found. It is through the decoding of the signs carved in steles, that scientists have understand much of the habits and life of ancient Mayas.

Next to stele 1 is a stairway of the edifice or building 33, which is the best preserved. Climbing it up will allow visitors to enjoy a really pleasant view from the Grand Acropolis. A trail leads visitors toward edifice 30 and, behind it, walking down a hill, the Small Acropolis and other buildings can be reached. Natural landscapes including rare tree formations can be admired during the tour.

Like in Palenque, weather in Yaxchilan is quite humid and extremely hot. Therefore, visitors should wear hat and light clothes, and not to forget insect repellent and drinkable water.