There are plenty of Mayan ruins in Mexico and other destinations in South America. While visiting any of these ruins will allow for an incredible family vacation, you don’t need to choose the most popular ruins. Instead, I recommend considering the lesser-known Mayan ruins in Mexico. Choosing one of those will allow you to avoid crowds. Don’t worry; you will still get the history lesson and amazing experiences at these Mexican ruins.
My favorite lesser-known Mayan ruins in Mexico happen to be Toniná. This site is located in Ocosingo. It is not as popular as sites like Lagartero, Palenque, and Izapa. However, the breathtaking pyramids and the rest of the ancient city will make it worthy of your time.
The ancient city of Toniná was constructed on a hill in between jungles. All the pyramids within the ancient city were constructed with white stone. Plus, every single architectural feature was built to seek homage to the natural mountains, sky, sun, and the rest of the planets.
The history of this ancient city is long. According to history, people lived in Toniná for at least a thousand years. That time was known as the Classic Mayan Period.
Toniná was known as a city of great military power. In fact, it was one of the most important cities in Mesoamerica.
The main enemy of Toniná was the city of Palenque. You can visit the Mayan ruins of both these destinations during a family vacation in Mexico.
Much more research will need to be completed before it can be determined what exactly caused the decline and disappearance of this ancient city.
The Toniná Acropolis, or Great Pyramid, is seventy-five meters high. Its width covers more than three hundred meters. The entire pyramid contains seven stories. Within those seven stories are thirteen temples, statues, murals, palaces, and a Pitz court.
While this is an immense structure to explore, it is important to note that the entire city has yet to be excavated. There is still seventy percent of Toniná to discover.
While exploring these lesser-known Mayan ruins in Mexico, you must take the time to check out the palatial maze. That maze is called the Palace of the Underworld.
I recommend walking along the Pitz court and checking out the ancient houses. Don’t skip the climb to the top of the pyramid to check out the surrounding area.
So, don’t forget your camera because you will want to grab pictures of the murals and statues. Also, keep in mind that many of the statues are replicas since the originals are being preserved at the Toniná Museum.
You can choose to drive or take the bus to Toniná. The bus is available for the trip from Ocosingo. Although, a car will be necessary if you start the journey in Palenque or San Cristóbal de las Casas.
These Mayan ruins in Mexico are open seven days a week. I recommend taking a tour from local guides if possible. This will ensure you don’t miss any of the intricate details at the ruins.
You won’t regret spending time at these lesser-known Mayan ruins in Mexico. You can choose to see these ruins on their own or include them in a trip to see the most popular Mayan ruins in Mexico. The choice is yours, and I can make it all possible during your next family vacation.
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