Viator Exclusive: Early Access To Chichen Itza From Playa Del Carmen With Archeologist - Playa Del Carmen

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Per Person
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Tour Information

Tour Details


Arrive early and beat the crowds on this tour of Chichen Itza with an expert archeologist guide a Viator Exclusive available nowhere else! Experience in tranquility attractions like the sacred cenote, the Kukulkan Pyramid, the ball court and other areas of this impressive archeological zone not part of most traditional tours. As you take in the grandeur of the ancient capital of the Mayan Empire, enjoy informative and fascinating commentary from your specialized guide. Hotel transport from Playa del Carmen is included.


  • Exclusive to Viator
  • Free hotel pickup and drop-off included
  • Family friendly
  • Lunch included

Know More about this tour

Start your day trip with early morning pickup from your Playa del Carmen hotel, making sure you dont miss the chance to be one of the first visitors of the day to explore the wonders of Chichen Itza, the ancient capital of the Mayan Empire. With essential background knowledge provided by a specialized archeologist guide just for you and your group, youll easily imagine how the Mayans once inhabited this city.

As you wander through the well-preserved ruins in relative peace and quiet, learn how Chichen Itza played a pivotal role in Mayan society from around 600 to 1200 AD and endured as a base of worship and pilgrimage until the Spanish landed. The Maya people of the Yucatan Peninsula today still regard Chichen Itza, named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, as a sacred place.

Listen to your guide about how archeologists unearthed the abandoned site, buried over time by the jungle, and how their discoveries provided Chichen Itza with UNESCO status. With your guides presentation of Mayan mythology, philosophy and cosmology, gain a deep understanding of the meaning behind the stone carvings, platforms, ball courts and staircases. Then see the famous ruins with a new perspective.

Make your way through the observatory and the Temple of the Warriors. Youll of course visit the legendary Kukulcan Pyramid, also referred to as El Castillo, a four-sided structure constructed with a keen knowledge of astronomy. Your guide will explain that during equinox on a clear day, a snake slithers down the pyramid stairs, which is actually a shadow created by the setting sun.

As you peer into the sacred cenote, your guide explains how archeologists delved into this pilgrimage site and pulled out wood, shells, cloth, jewelry and the skeletons of men and children, confirming that the natural sinkhole indeed was once used as a human sacrifice site.

Stand on one of the platforms at the colossal ball court where Mayans played sports, and have another person from your group whisper from 150 feet (46 meters) away. Youll be surprised to hear every word. This acoustical engineering feat of the Mayans is not entirely understood even today.

After your tour, ride back to Playa del Carmen and return to your hotel mid-afternoon. With this Viator Exclusive, your early morning visit to Chichen Itza allows you to explore the site before the crowds so you can enjoy the rest of your day on the beach.

Inclusions for Viator Exclusive: Early Access To Chichen Itza From Playa Del Carmen With Archeologist

  • Round trip transportation
  • Bilingual guide
  • Mealaccording to season:During summer, lunch During winter, breakfast
  • Entrance fee to the site

Exclusions for Viator Exclusive: Early Access To Chichen Itza From Playa Del Carmen With Archeologist

  • Gratuities (optional)
  • Fee for use of video camera (between $10USD and $25USD)

Additional Info

Confirmation will be received at time of booking

It is recommended that you wear comfortable walking shoes

Adult pricing applies to all travelers

Note: An additional fee is required for the use of video camera at the site. The fee is between $10USD to $25USD (depending on the device) and must be paid directly on site on the day of the tour

Cancellation Policy
  • If you cancel within 3 calendar days (72 hours) of the scheduled departure time, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel between 4 to 7 Calendar days before scheduled tour departure,the cancellation charge will be 50% of the undiscounted tour price.
  • If you cancel at least 8 calendar days in advance of the scheduled departure time, there is no cancellation fee. You will receive Full Refund for the paid amount.
  • Please note that in case of No show, the cancellation charge will be 100% of the listed tour fare.
  • Please note tours booked using discount coupon codes will be non refundable.

Write A Review

339 reviews by the users

  • 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!

  • Chichen was gorgeous. I loved the early access because it allowed to beat the crowds and the heat. Our guide Frank and driver Carlos were friendly. I was picked up and then brought to a bigger bus for the trip to Chichen. Things I would change would include, I was told to be ready at 505 and was not picked up until 545 AM. The bus did not drop us back off at our hotels, but at a central meeting point. I did not mind this as I have a good sense of direction and can get around. However, this maybe a turn off for others.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Early access is the best if doing this trip.

  • Fantastic day out totally organised from start to finish , we were split into two groups spanish speaking and English speaking which was good our guide was very informative and generally good fun the lunch in the way back to playa del Carmen was really nice and all the people were so nice .

  • Was not picked up.had to resort to plan b and make my own way

  • Well, the three big claims in this listing aren't really accurate:

    1. Early access - Not true. We arrived at 8am when the site opened
    2. Access to exclusive areas - Nope. We went to same parts of site as everyone else
    3. Return to Playa by afternoon - Nope again. I got back to my hotel at 6pm

    The site is great and the guide was very good. But if I could do it over I'd just rent a car and drive out to get there early at 8 when it opens and then return to Playa by 3pm. Just too long of an all-day excursion IMO considering you have to wake up at 430am and don't really reap the benefits of such an early start time.

    Driving a car would be much faster without the multiple stops to and from as well as the lunch at the souvenir shop that was another 90 minutes.

  • This was a fantastic tour. Going early in the morning to avoid the rush and the heat was the best plan. Frank was an excellent guide, very informative. There were about 16 in our group. Had an hour to explore on your own as well as the two hour guided tour.

  • It was the best idea to get there early, although it was not so full there at the time, when the sun came out it got quite hot and there is not that much shade. Our guide was very knowledgeable and kind. we had a lot of fun. Definitely worth getting out of bed early!

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