This ancestral site has three characteristics that make it unique: pre-Hispanic ruins, jungle vegetation, and the Caribbean Sea.
The Riviera Maya has ruins steeped in history and surrounded by spectacular vegetation. One of the most visited is Muyil, an archeological site located just 20 minutes from Tulum and sharing its location with Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve.
Muyil was a Mayan settlement that was a key in the Caribbean trade route; thanks to two nearby lagoons (Muyil and Chunyché), the arrival and departure of merchandise was possible. This made it an essential site for commercial distribution to other populations.
The archeological site has diverse constructions: temples, altars, and platforms rise among the lush jungle vegetation. One of the most popular structures of the area is known as El Castillo (The Castle): it is 17 meters (or 55 ft) high and has a circular temple on top. So far, its functions are unknown, but it is believed to be a representation of the ceiba, a tree that was sacred to Mayan culture.
There are diverse constructions in Muyil: temples, altars, and platforms rise among the lush jungle vegetation within a biosphere reserve.
The Castillo also has a stucco frieze showing two herons in relief, as well as altars in which offerings made on greenstone, shells and snails have been found.
Besides admiring the ruins, a tour of the natural beauty of the site is practically mandatory. To begin with, we recommend you go to Muyil, the lagoon that bears the archeological site name: there is a viewpoint from which you can observe the turquoise blue of the Caribbean Sea.
Another activity not to be missed is a visit to different areas of the reserve. The beaches, for example, are quiet, have few visitors, and diving is allowed. A boat ride is also popular: you can admire mangroves, the bird island, and even a Mayan temple that is partially submerged in the water.
Muyil Archeological Site
Reforma Agraria – Puerto Juárez, km 25. Chunyaxché, Quintana Roo.
Hours: Monday to Sunday, 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
Admission to the area: $70 MXN
Admission to the reserve: $65 MXN