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Ek Balam

Ek Balam: Our most recommended tours and activities

From Riviera Maya: Ek Balam and Cenote Maya Full-Day Tour

1. From Riviera Maya: Ek Balam and Cenote Maya Full-Day Tour

Explore the archaeological site of Ek Balam, a top regional attraction that has been recently restored. You’ll also visit the mysterious Cenote Maya, a natural pool that features beautiful rock formations. Your full-day tour begins at the Cenote Maya Park, where you’ll descend into the region’s most impressive cenote by a large wooden staircase built using ancient Maya techniques. Experience a range of optional adventures at the park, such as swimming in the cenote, diving, rappelling, swinging on a Tarzan vine, and more. Visit a small, colorful handicraft market, where your purchases of locally made items benefit Maya artisans. See a Mayan ritual, and be part of an authentic blessing ceremony performed by a shaman. Enjoy a Mayan buffet of traditional dishes such as lime soup, chaya tamales, beans, vegetables, rice, chicken, handmade tortillas, fruits, and flavored water. Next on the itinerary is visit to the Ek Balam site. Dating from the 11th century, this is one of the most impressive ceremonial centers of the Yucatan peninsula. Admire the temples and plazas and unique high-relief sculptures.

From Riviera Maya: Ek Balam & Cenote Tour w/ Lunch & Pickup

2. From Riviera Maya: Ek Balam & Cenote Tour w/ Lunch & Pickup

Explore the archeological site with one of the largest buildings in Mesoamerica: Ek Balam. Explore, climb and take pictures at the top of the acropolis to admire its unique architecture and view to the mayan jungle. A guide will escort you to unveil the enigma of the Mayas that one inhabited the place. Feel free to ask as many questions since our guides are fully certified. Afterwards, swim in the refreshing waters of Chichikan cenote, a natural water formation. As pure as it can get; relax yourself surrounded by nature. After swimming, let us pamper you with the best of the local cuisine: Typical dishes with more than 20 options to choose from. To finish your trip, you will have free time to explore the magical town of Valladolid. We will stop at the main plaza where you will be able to take pictures and enjoy this pintoresque colonial town.

From Cancun: Ek Balam and Cenote Tour with Lunch & Transfer

3. From Cancun: Ek Balam and Cenote Tour with Lunch & Transfer

Explore the archeological site with one of the largest buildings in Mesoamerica: Ek Balam. Explore, climb and take pictures at the top of the acropolis to admire its unique architecture and view to the mayan jungle. A guide will escort you to unveil the enigma of the Mayas that one inhabited the place. Feel free to ask as many questions since our guides are fully certified. Afterwards, swim in the refreshing waters of Chichikan cenote, a natural water formation. As pure as it can get; relax yourself surrounded by nature. After swimming, let us pamper you with the best of the local cuisine: Typical dishes with more than 20 options to choose from. To finish your trip, you will have free time to explore the magical town of Valladolid. We will stop at the main plaza where you will be able to take pictures and enjoy this pintoresque colonial town.

Cancun/Playa del Carmen: Chichen Itza, Cenote, Ek'Balam Tour

4. Cancun/Playa del Carmen: Chichen Itza, Cenote, Ek'Balam Tour

Discover the magic of the Yucatan on this day trip from Cancun or Playa del Carmen to the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza and Ek Balam and a visit to cenote Saamal. Benefit from a hotel pickup by air-conditioned van, lunchbox, and a guide. Journey to the ancient city of Chichen Itza, one of the most iconic archaeological sites in the world. Be accompanied by an expert guide throughout the day and learn fascinating facts and folklore of the Mayan civilization.  Next, visit Ek Balam, an off-the-beaten-track Yucatec-Maya archaeological site with incredible carvings hidden in a jungle landscape. Climb the soaring Acropolis pyramid, the highest point of the ruins. To recover from the Yucatan heat, dive in the crystalline waters of the underground, semi-open Cenote Saamal. Soak up the natural light illuminating the waters and the sight of tree roots cascading towards the sinkhole water.

Cancun: Ek Balam Self-Guided Tour

5. Cancun: Ek Balam Self-Guided Tour

Start by downloading the Action Tour Guide app, which will function as your personal tour guide, audio tour, and map all in one. Once downloaded, your tour of Ek Balam begins near the Visitor Center. As you head into the site, you’ll turn back the clock thousands of years and revisit the history of Maya before the Europeans arrived. Then, learn about the arrival of the Spanish, their conquest, and how it changed the course of history on the continent. After crossing through the remnants of an ancient defensive wall, you’ll arrive at a ball court and learn the fundamentals of an intense, dangerous Mayan game that was a little bit like a cross between soccer and basketball, but with unbelievably high stakes. Then, making your way to the Circular Steam Bath (which was used to heal the sick and wounded), you’ll get a crash course in Mayan architecture. You’ll also get more familiar with the complex tenets of ancient Mayan religion on your way to your next stop. Next comes the Acropolis, the largest standing structure on the peninsula. This immense building is King Ukit Kan Le'k Tok’s most enduring legacy. Fortunately, you can actually climb the stairs to the top! As you climb, you’ll notice a pair of hieroglyphic serpents and discover their meaning. After that comes the tomb of Ukit Kan Le'k Tok’ himself. It’s quite possibly the best-preserved tomb of any Mayan king, and is a must-see stop during your visit. Finally, you’ll reach the top of the pyramid. From here, you’ll have panoramic views in every direction. You’ll even be able to see the outline of Chichen Itza on a clear day! The tour concludes here, after detailing the plaza visible below.

Mayan Ruins of Mexico Self-Guided Walking Tour Bundle

6. Mayan Ruins of Mexico Self-Guided Walking Tour Bundle

Start by downloading the Action Tour Guide app, which will function as your personal tour guide, audio tour, and map all in one. Once downloaded, each tour will begin at the entrance to the respective ruins. At Chichen Itza, you’ll see famous landmarks like the towering El Castillo and the Temple of Warriors. As you explore and learn more about the Mayan people, you’ll also encounter ancient white stone roads, intricate carvings, and even the infamous Wall of Skulls. This ruin is also home to the Great Ball Court, where Mayans once played an intense game sort of like a cross between soccer and basketball, but with a 20-pound ball! Tulum, the walled fortress, stands atop a bluff overlooking the sea. As you tour this incredible site, you’ll be treated to breathtaking ocean views at every turn. Here, you’ll visit landmarks such as the Palace of the Great Lord, once home to the rulers of the city. You’ll also see unusual structures like the Temple of the Wind and discover what it tells archaeologists about surprisingly advanced Mayan technology. Add to that the intricately decorated Temple of Frescoes, and you’ve got a truly unforgettable destination! At Ek Balam, you’ll hear the story of Ukit Kan Le'k Tok’, the ancient Mayan king responsible for the most impressive structures you’ll see at this site. Among them: The one-of-a-kind Acropolis, the single largest ancient Mayan structure on the peninsula. Here, you’ll also find King Ukit Kan Le'k Tok’s tomb, honoring the long-dead ruler. This tour will also dive into the Mayan conflict with the Spanish, and how it spelled the end for this once-powerful civilization. Your tour of Coba will introduce you to some truly remarkable artifacts, such as the famous Stelae. These huge rectangular slabs of stone still bear the engravings made in them long, long ago, the meanings of which are argued about by archaeologists to this day. Also in Coba, on structures like the picturesque Pyramid of the Painted Lintel, are remnants of the paints once used by Mayans to create beautifully colorful cities. But the main attraction of Coba has to be the Nohoch Mul Pyramid. It’s the second largest Mayan pyramid in the world, and you can actually climb the steps to the top! The views from up there are truly once-in-a-lifetime.

Cancún: Chichén Itzá, Ek Balam, Cenote & Lunch

7. Cancún: Chichén Itzá, Ek Balam, Cenote & Lunch

See some of the most important sights while visiting the Cancun area with this day trip to Chichen Itza and Ek Balam. See an ancient wonder and take a refreshing swim in a cenote. Be among the first visitors to explore Ek Balam archaeological site and its Mayan ruins early in the morning. Climb the pyramids for a panoramic view of the Mayan jungle at your feet. Have some free time to explore on your own afterward. After admiring the views, head to Chichen Itza. Let your guide broaden your knowledge of archeology and Mayan culture. Imagine how the Mayans once lived in this city. Stroll through the well-preserved ruins as your guide tells you about Mayan mythology, philosophy, and cosmology. Gain a deeper understanding of the meanings behind the stone sculptures and platforms. To finish off your tour, savor a Mexican buffet lunch. Take a break in the Cenote Saamal. Get a break from the heat with a refreshing swim right next to its waterfall.

From Quintana Roo: Ek Balam Mayan Ruins and Cenote Day Trip

8. From Quintana Roo: Ek Balam Mayan Ruins and Cenote Day Trip

Take a day trip to the Ek Balam Mayan ruins and explore its impressive structures. Experience a spiritual Mayan ceremony and enter a cenote, sacred to Mayan culture. Rappel and slackline through geological formations and swim in picturesque waters. Depart from your hotel in Cancún or Riviera Maya and head to Ek Balam, an ancient Mayan complex thought to be a sacred city. Visit the "White House of Reading," constructed by the Maya ruler Ukit Kan Le'k Tok'. View its symbolism with themes relating to the underworld. Experience a shaman-led Mayan ceremony to ask for permission to go inside the cenote. Enter the cenote and enjoy activities such as rappelling, slacklining, or swimming. Have fun with Tarzan-like vines and cool off in crystalline waters.

From Cancun: Ek Balam and Cenote Maya Full-Day Tour

9. From Cancun: Ek Balam and Cenote Maya Full-Day Tour

Visit the ruins of Ek Balam and explore the incomparably beautiful Cenote Maya. Join us on this unforgettable journey that explores the natural beauty and intriguing history of the Yucatan. Start your day with a visit to Cenote Maya, the largest naturally-covered cenote on the Yucatan Peninsula and enjoy swimming in, zip lining over and rappelling into its crystal clear waters surrounded by hundreds of ancient rock formations. Learn about the Maya traditions of this region as you participate in a traditional Maya ceremony, stroll through their fruit & vegetable orchards and visit a typical Maya house. Savor some delicious regional food, including our famous “chayitas” and freshly flavored water drinks. After your visit to this unique place, enjoy a guided tour to Ek Balam, considered the intellectual center of the ancient Maya. Enjoy a guided tour that visits the chapel, Oval Palace and ballcourt. Wrap up this fun-filled day with a climb to the top of the amazing Acropolis temple from which you will be able to view an endless sea of subtropical rainforest. ITINERARY - FULL DAY TOUR Arrival at NativePark Yucatan (approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes in this site). - Maya orchard visit - Rappel (optional) - Rope activities (optional) - Zip line (optional) - Cenote swim - Maya ceremony Transfer to and arrival at the archaeological site of Ek Balam (approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes in this site). - Guided tour - Free time Please note that the order of these activities may vary due to daily logistical planning.

Yucatán: Ek' Balam and Cenote Hubiku Tour

10. Yucatán: Ek' Balam and Cenote Hubiku Tour

Walk through the jungle that saw the Mayan people blooming. Ek' Balam has the perfect experience of avoiding the crowded sites and the Acropolis, the main building, is still open for you to climb. Ek' Balam is one of the latest findings of the Mayan world, the main pyramid and the stelae located on the bottom of the monument count the story of this important city and its emperors. The different buildings surrounding the area include the Oval Palace, the twin pyramids and a beautiful arch marking the entrance to this ancient city. Head to cenote Hubiku, a sacred entrance to the underworld on the Mayan beliefs, this natural pool has a semi-open cave letting the sunbeams to light your swimming. The Don Tadeo Tequila Museum will guide you through an interactive experience to know the process to make one of the most popular beverages in the world made in Mexico.  You will experience an example of the Mayan type of house where you will see the traditions of this culture, have a taste of Cochinita Pibil, the emblematic dish of Mayan people. Then head to the completely natural shade provided by the same trees of the jungle and the hammocks hanging, the most relaxing part of the entire trip, feeling the wind pampering you. A buffet lunch is served, local cuisine of a variety of dishes cooked with pork, chicken, and beef. One soft drink is included with your meal

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What people are saying about Ek Balam

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 59 reviews

The guide was sharp early in the morning, we had to pickup 2 more families and then depart on a comfortable trip to our first stop: Ek Balam , which is a Hidden gem: one of the last archaeological sites were you can still climb and interact with history. Our guide superb, he took us on quite an adventure on the Mayan culture. Cenote was awesome. Bring water shoes since it's kind of slippery. Food was great.

Great tour . Perfect timing on each place of interest. We had a wonderful time with our guide Alvaro, we were deeply submerged on Mayan culture: all places were a complete Marvel. I really enjoyed to truly interact and touch these ancient buildings. Food was better than expected. So that was a PLUS.

All information was correct. The vehicle was clean, the guide very well informed and polyglot. The cenote was very nice, clean changing rooms, good food. On this tour we got to know the few uncrowded places

Mina our guide was so kind and helpful. Very well organised trip. We had the chance to enjoy both Ek-Balam and Chichen Itza. Our guide to Chichen Itza was also fantastic.

picked up on time. tour guide very knowledgeable. given enough free time to look around. would highly recommend tour company