hichen Itza was a large pre-Columbian city built by the Maya people of the Terminal Classic period.  The large pre-Colombian Mayan archeological site of Chichen Itza in the north central part of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula was prominent for four centuries from about 600 AD. Today a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Chichen Itza is the second most-visited of all of Mexico’s archeological sites, being a convenient day trip from the popular Caribbean seaside resort city of Cancun. Itza is a tribal name, and it is thought that ‘Chichen Itza’ means ‘at the mouth of the well of the Itza.

Although there are no aboveground rivers in the interior of the arid northern Yucatan, underground rivers do exist. In fact, two large sinkholes at the Chichen Itza site probably provided year-round access to water for the local population. Gold, jade and the remains of sacrificed humans have been found in the most well-known of these sinkholes the Well of Sacrifice.

By Ted Cookson (Egypt’s most widely-traveled travel agent, Ted has been to every country in the world)

Chichen itza

Pyramid Mexico

Pyramid Mexico Tourism Travel Temple Culture

Pyramid Mayan Culture History Old

Pyramid Mayan Culture History Old

The Chichen Itza

Mexico The Ruins Of The Chichen,Itza The Mayans

Chichen Itza
Chichen, Itza
Mexico Chichen Itza Snake

Mexico Chichen Itza Snake Maya Ruins

Mexico Chichen Itza Pyramid Maya
Mexico Chichen, Itza Pyramid Maya
Mexico Chichen Itza Pyramid Kukulcan
Mexico Chichen Itza Pyramid Kukulcan
Mexico Chichen Itza Pyramid Kukulcan
Mexico Chichen, Itza Pyramid Maya

At one time an active urban centre and dominant Mayan regional capital, the Chichen Itza site still contains a number of stone structures connected by a thick grid of once-paved roads stretching in all directions. Chichen Itza’s buildings are grouped into three major complexes.

The Great North Platform contains El Castillo (also known as the Pyramid of Kukulkan), the Great Ball Court and the Temple of the Warriors. The Ossario Group contains the Ossario Pyramid and the Temple of Xtoloc, while the Central Group contains the Observatory, the Nunnery and Akab Dzib.

El Castillo, or the Pyramid of Kukulkan, the plumed serpent, is a step pyramid with stairways on all four sides. During sunrise and sunset on the spring and autumn equinox the shadows cast by the corner tiers move down the north side of the pyramid to the snake’s head at the base.

Excavations in the 1930sturned up an earlier pyramid buried underneath El Castillo. A room in the temple with a jaguar-shaped throne, which had been opened for tourism for many years, was finally closed in 2006. Apparently dedicated to the planet Venus, the purpose of the Platform of Venus, situated between El Castillo andthe Well of Sacrifice, is unknown. Inside this platform were found a number of mysterious large stone cones.

By Ted Cookson:

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