Chichen Itza tour questions

Old Jun 23rd, 2000, 08:30 AM
  #1  
Laura
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Chichen Itza tour questions

I'll be in Cancun mid-August, and wondered if anyone had been on a great (or awful) tour out to the ruins. Looking for less touristy tours or private car and driver trips, within a reasonable rate. Thanks!
 
Old Jun 23rd, 2000, 04:25 PM
  #2  
dmotl
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This is the best tour offered in Cancun. Would recommend a tour group over individual tour. This is because unless you have a guide you will miss a lot of the historical significance of the sight.
A warning. I can not even imagine how hot and humid it will be at the sight in August. Dan and ginny
 
Old Jun 23rd, 2000, 04:27 PM
  #3  
d motl
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Opps--price is around $50/person for tour. To go private you would want to rent a taxi at $12/hour. To do a taxi you had best figure 10 to 12 hours for the trip. Dan and Ginny
 
Old Jun 23rd, 2000, 04:34 PM
  #4  
d motl
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Oops--forgot to mention prices. $55
for tour. To go private would recommend renting a Taxi at $12/hr.
Figure 11 to 12 hours for the day. You can rent a guide at the site but they don't come cheap--$100 for a group of up to 16 people--you can split the cost. Dan and Ginny
 
Old Jun 25th, 2000, 12:30 PM
  #5  
Karen
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We did Chichen-Itza via the flight on Aero Fuerjo from Playa and they do have trips from Cancun. It is well worth the price to fly rather than travel by bus. We arrived early in the am before many of the tour busses arrived and it was wonderful. The tour provides for a guide and, if you do your homework and ask questions , it can be very informative and not the "touristy" gloss over! We departed by 11:30am from the site (taxi to and from the airport there is provided in the tour) and were glad that we missed the heat of the day and the masses arriving by bus! Back on the beach by 2 pm after lunch! You can also arrange to have your own private guide but the air tour is all inclusive.
 
Old Jun 25th, 2000, 01:45 PM
  #6  
Charlie
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Good info Karen,how about the cost from Playa ?
 
Old Jun 25th, 2000, 03:13 PM
  #7  
nikki
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Hi Laura,
I don't know if this is too pricey for you but here is the info. The tour cost was 230.00. It included roundtrip transportation from the hotel to the airport, a 45 min flight to the ruins and a private tour guide. The maximum amount of people on the tour is five. Our tour guide really knew the history of the site. One thing you should know, you will be charged add't $ if you want to bring a camcorder inside. The rate can be from 5-15 dollars (american). I do not know if all the hotels offer this package, but I know the Ritz and the Moon Palace does.
Nikki
 
Old Jun 25th, 2000, 06:03 PM
  #8  
Judy
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I've been to Chichen Itza twice and found that, with a good guide book in had, I got the same information as the people next to me in a tour group -- and I could spend time at the places that were really interesting without having to keep up with a group. Also, if the heat gets to you, you can sit down and rest without being hurried up. There's a great deal of information available onsite at Chichen Itza since it is the star attraction of the Mayan route. It is also the easiest to get to from Cancun. Some of the less developed sites such as Uxmal or Tulum may well be better appreciated as part of a group. They are also far enough away from Cancun to require an overnight stay unless you want a very quick tour in the midday heat.

The previous post offers good advice -- get there early. Most of the tours arrive between 10 am and noon, when the day is getting really hot. The first-class buses from Cancun also arrive in this period. I've seen people in these groups looking like they were about to faint from the weather.

If you don't mind doing an overnight stay, take a second-class bus in the afternoon from Cancun to Merida via Piste, the village close to Chichen Itza. There's no air conditioning, but the buses, particularly from the Oriente company, are in good shape -- they're old Greyhounds -- nd you get to meet the locals. The bus station in Cancun is in the town, a short cab or collectivo trip from the hotel zone. There are very helpful information staff on hand to help the tourists find the right bus.

The bus will drop you off in Piste where you can walk or get a cab to your hotel. There are a variety of very nice, quite pricey, ones close to the ruins. My personal favourite, though, is the Dolores Alba, a family-run operation about 2.5 km (1 mile) from the site. They have a web site at:http://dyred.sureste.com/dolores/ and are very efficient about internet reservations. The bus will drop you at the hotel, upon request.

Relax for the evening and get up early for the ruins. I'd try to be there about 8:00-8:30.
 
Old Jun 26th, 2000, 07:53 AM
  #9  
dan woodlief
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I am not going to discount the advice that you will learn more by taking a tour. If you have a good guide, this can often be the case. However, I do think you can get just as much if not more out of it, by reading yourself before you go. I have read a lot on this subject in the past year, and I can tell you that your local library is likely to have lots of books on the Maya. I would highly recommend Robert J. Sharer's "The Ancient Maya," but there are many good ones. Of course, many, including the one above, are written in a fairly scholarly fashion, but they are super informative. One thing to know about the Maya is that a large part of what is written is speculation (partly because a lot of their texts were destroyed by the Spanish), so you will often find widely varying accounts (for example, who actually settled Chichen Itza).

 
Old Jun 26th, 2000, 09:07 AM
  #10  
Susan
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Judy recommends staying in Piste. The other alternative (which we did a few years ago) is to stay in Valladolid which is about 1/2 hour from Chichen Itza. It's a nice little town (at least it was at that time) and accommodation is very reasonable. We spent the night, then just caught a bus in the morning to Chichen Itza.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2000, 03:34 PM
  #11  
Cara
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We went in Feb, took plane from Cozumel. It was expensive, about 215 dollars, but didn't want to spend so much of our precious week on a bus. I agree with previous post, take plane, get in and out early, cause it was pretty hot and it was only Feb. I enjoyed tour guide trememendously, and felt it was most efficient way to learn. By the way, it is a very SMALL plane 12 people.
 
Old Jul 13th, 2000, 06:11 PM
  #12  
Judy
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I was in Valladolid last year -- it was still a nice place. Not having stayed overnight, I can't offer any advice on accomodations. The taxi from there to Piste was about $20.
 

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