Mexican Auto Insurance Guide to Mexico’s Most Impressive Archaeological Sites, Part 2

Mexican Auto Insurance Guide to Mexico’s Most Impressive Archaeological Sites, Part 2

In our previous Mexican Auto Insurance Guide, we talked about several remarkable places in Mexico, one of many that evoke the country’s rich ancient history and heritage. A home of hundreds of ancient pre-Colombian cities, Mexico offers the world one of the finest and most diverse array of archeological sites in Americas.

As you could see in our previous article, there’s much more to Mexico than just enjoying traditional beach resorts and popular travel destinations. If you want to further explore this marvelous country full of mysteries, magic and ravishing natural beauty, get your Mexican auto insurance, fuel up the tank and drive on!

4. Tulum

The Tulum ruins are the third most visited archaeological site in Mexico, right after Teotihuacan and Chichen Itza. Located on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea and only about a hundred kilometers south of the beach resort of Cancun, Tulum is definitely a “not to be missed” archaeological site. It is one of the few walled Mayan cities and the only Mayan settlement located on the Caribbean beaches. The spectacular views of the Caribbean and photogenic appeal compel thousands of people each year to visit its ruins.

Tulum, which means “wall” in the Yucatec language, is actually the name given to the site by explorers in 1841. Mayas called it Zama, which means “dawn”. Tulum had the population of 1,000 to 1,600 inhabitants and it was a major crossroads of trade both from land and sea.

The largest and most famous building within the settlement is El Castillo (The Castle). Being a landmark for sailors, it’s sometimes called the lighthouse. In front of the Castillo, you’ll see the Temple of the Frescoes, which was used as an observatory. On the left is the Temple of the Descending God, the main god honored at Tulum, with an upside-down figure of the god on the façade.

5. Coba

Coba is another must-see ancient Mayan city near Cancun, located around two lagoons, only 44 kilometers northwest of Tulum. Its name means “waters stirred by wind”. It was one of the most important settlements on the Yucatan Peninsula, with agricultural population that reached 50,000 inhabitants at its peak. With various settlements spread over more than 80 square kilometers, Coba was quite different from other Mayan cities. It is the largest network of wide and perfectly straight stone causeways of this ancient civilization. There are over 50 of these roads, known as “sacbeob” (white roads) and 16 are open to the public. The longest “sacbe” runs over 100 kilometers.

With the jungle vegetation surrounding the unrestored ruins, it is indeed picturesque scenery and exotic adventure not to be missed. The ruins are dispersed and represent the true Mayan architecture without the Toltec influence. Archaeologists have estimated that Coba contains up to 6,500 structures. Large groups of sites are connected to the main pyramid by the Mayan “white roads”. The central pyramid, called the Nohoch Mul, reaches 42 meters in height. It is the tallest pyramid in the Yucatan Peninsula. There is also a spiritual area or Conjunto Pinturas, with the Pyramid of the Painted Lintel as the focal point, and the Macanxoc Group, with eight stelas and numerous altars.

6. Ek’ Balam

Ek’ Balam is a Yuatec Mayan name which means “the black jaguar” or “bright star jaguar”.  Located 51 kilometers northeast of Chichen Itza, Ek’ Balam covered about 12 square kilometers. Only the center has been excavated, but those 2.5 kilometers that can be viewed and 45 structures that have been mapped will leave you in awe. The colossal dimensions of the ancient monuments, decorated facades and walls surrounding the center will stun you with their beauty, artistic detail and symbolism.

Ek’ Balam is composed of a few temples, two palaces and a large pyramid called “El Torre” (The Tower), the most impressive and prominent structure located in the center of the city. The Tower is one of the largest Mayan structures in the Yucatan Peninsula. The Tower is 30 meters high, 151 meters long and 60 meters wide. It will amaze you with some of the most decorate and elaborate design motifs in the Yucatan.

Your #1 Rule: Mexican Auto Insurance

If you plan to visit Mexico by car, remember the #1 rule: buy a Mexican auto insurance policy. You will certainly need it across the border, as your US or Canadian auto policies are not valid in Mexico. Visit us or order your Mexican auto insurance policy online. Travel insured with Oscar Padilla Mexican Insurance!