Timing

It's possible to visit the sites on the Ruta Puuc in one long day or over the course of two days. Almost every Mérida-based tour operator does the former, but the latter is recommended if you have the time and your own transportation; roads are well marked and easy to navigate, since the archaeological attractions line up one right after another. Most of the sites are open from 8 to 5 only, so to devote any less time means either skipping deserving locales or rushing through them. To do Uxmal justice, you'll want to spend anywhere from 3 to 5 hours exploring; smaller ruins can easily be seen in 20 to 30 minutes. Plan on spending a couple of hours at the Grutas de Loltún; be aware that guided tours through the cave are mandatory. If you plan on spending the night in Uxmal, you may want to start your trip off at the Grutas de Loltún and work your way toward Uxmal. To reach the caves from Mérida, take Carretera 261 to Muná and turn left on Carretera 184. From there, it's about 65 km (40 miles) to Oxkutzcab. Once in Oxkutzcab, simply follow the signs to the Grutas de Loltún. It's important to fill up on fuel and cash before entering the area, because both gas stations and ATMs are hard to come by.

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