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Uxmal Ruins
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Uxmal, México - Uxmal Ruins Map

Uxmal (OOSH-mahl) means “‘built three times” in the Mayan language, and though its name is a mystery, its beauty is not. As a World Heritage site, it is one of the best-restored and maintained archaeological sites in the Yucatán, and certainly one of the most magnificent. Its architecture, some of the most majestic of the Yucatán archaeological sites, is characterized by low horizontal palaces set around courtyards, decorated with rich sculptural elements and details.

Uxmal was the greatest metropolitan and religious center in the Puuc hills in the late classical period. It thrived between the 7th and 10th centuries AD and its numerous architectural styles reflect a number of building phases

It is a mystery as to why a settlement was ever made here: there are no rivers or local sources of water, and no evidence that they once existed. One of the features of Uxmal are the Mayan chultunes (cisterns), which held water for the population to live from.

Chaac, the rain god, features prominently in much of the architecture's carvings—no doubt an important source of water for the people that lived here.

Within a 10 mile radius of Uxmal are four other smaller ancient 'towns' of Kabah, Sayil, Xlapak, and Labna. Together with Uxmal, these places make up the Ruta Puuc (Puuc Route), named after the hills in which these ruins are nestled.

Uxmal is a delightful archaeological site to experience. The rich green fertile land provides a perfect setting for some of the most magnificent ancient pyramids, building and temples of the ancient world. You can sense the history here as you walk around and gaze at the stunning architecture and majestic layout of this ancient city.