If you are visiting the Yucatan in Mexico and wondering Why You Need To Visit Uxmal, let me share our experiences in this beautiful area.
Why You Should Visit Uxmal
The name Uxmal is Mayan for "Three times built." This comes from the main pyramid in the area, which was built on existing structures.
The area is beautiful. The ancient ruins seem to come out of nowhere, and the main Pyramid of the Magician rises well above the tree line so you can see for miles in every direction.
We had a guide on our journey to Uxmal, which was amazing. There are lots of guides at the visitor center of the ruins, and they were all very helpful and informed. It was definitely worth the cost. We paid extra for an English-speaking guide.
Uxmal is close to both Merida and Campeche, which makes it a perfect day trip. It is around 1 hour from Merida and 2 hours from Campeche. It is very easy to visit, and well worth it.
What Is Uxmal?
Uxmal is a historical site in the Yucatan. It was occupied by different royal families until 1450. This happened when the League of Mayapán, a political band of city-states, ended.
These ruins were an important site of worship for the rain god Chaac. All along the main pyramid called the Pyramid of the Magician, are carvings representing the rain god.
Although the area around Uxmal is heavily forested, they did not get a lot of rain when the Mayans occupied the area. To make sure they had enough water, they constructed huge cisterns to hold water.
Uxmal is a big set of ruins. The main set of ruins is about 150 acres. The Pyramid of the Magician is one of the tallest Mayan buildings. It sits at 91 feet high, which is only 7 feet shorter than the main pyramid at Chichen Itza.
Where Is Uxmal Located
Uxmal is located on the Yucatan Peninsula, on the west end of the peninsula. It is 84 kilometers from Merida, and 160 from Campeche.
It is easy to find and we had no problems following google maps to get here.
Notes For Visiting Uxmal
Make sure to bring enough for entry. Parking at Uxmal was 80 pesos, and 230 pesos to get into the park.
We got a guide while we were there, and I believe it was 800 pesos. You will pay more for an English-speaking guide. For us, it was worth it.
There is very little shade in the ruins, so dress accordingly and bring water. When we were there, it was really hot.
Normally you can climb the main pyramid, but it is closed for the COVID-19 pandemic. You can climb some of the smaller buildings, however.
There is food and water in the main visitors center in case you get hungry, and a restaurant as well. The restaurant on site was good and I recommend eating here instead of traveling somewhere else.
FAQ Visiting Uxmal
I think so. Uxmal is a large group of ruins, we understood so much more with the help of our guide. If you are trying to save money, you can skip it, but I recommend it.
Yes! We used Google maps and it took us right to the ruins. It was also very well marked.
I would recommend at least 1.5-2 hours to take it all in. It really is a large place and tons to see!
Is Uxmal worth the trip?
Without a doubt, yes. Not only are the ruins beautiful, but they are also accessible.
I also need to note, this is where I bought my embroidered Mexican dress. I was surprised this was the least expensive place to buy them and the quality was amazing. All the embroidery was hand done.
The cost is a little higher, but still worth it.