El Castillo (or “The Castle” in English), also known as the Temple of Kukulcan, stands nearly 80 feet tall in UNESCO World Heritage-listed Chichén Itzá, the iconic ancient Maya city and one of the most important archaeological sites in Southeast Mexico.
The pyramid has four sides with 91 stairs on each, bringing the total stair count to 365 (including the top step of the platform) to represent the number of days in the solar year.
During the spring and autumn equinoxes, the sun casts shadows that resemble a snake slithering down the stairs.
While visiting the city, travelers can also see a ball court where ancient inhabitants played the ancient Maya ball game known as Pok Ta Pok, along with a temple and a colonnade.
Admission tickets can be purchased on-site for 480 pesos ($25) per person.
The closest major city is the state capital Merida, which sits about 75 miles northwest and offers a variety of hotels, including properties from major brands like Hilton, Hyatt and Wyndham.
The pyramids of Chichen Itza have been a popular attraction for ages, but now they are being questioned, or rather, the method in which they were built is.
Historians have analyzed the buildings and structures located within this site and have found a variety of diverse materials which do not originate locally in Yucatan, Mexico.
One of these materials is mica, which was used by the Mayans during construction to insulate their buildings, but there is one problem.
Mica is found 2,000 miles away from the pyramids in Brazil, and scientists are baffled as to how it was transported without vehicles.
Chichen Itza is considered as one of the Seven Wonders of the New World.
The name of this ancient Mayan city located on the Yucatan Peninsula has been derived from the Mayan language which means ‘at the mouth of the well of the Itza.’
The most famous attraction on the site is the step pyramid known as “El Castillo” which has a temple on the top of it.
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The Yucatan Times Newsroom
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