Mexico/Chiapas: Yaxchilan Ruins

Yaxchilan is probably one of the most remote and intriguing Mayan ruins archaeological site – just getting here is an adventure. The site is located in the very south of Mexico on the border with Guatemala and the only access to it is by boat (after a long drive here). It’s located on a horseshoe bend surrounded by Ucumacinta river (and Guatemala) on almost all sides. Yaxchilan was one of the largest and dominant center in the Mayan world and fought wars with Tikal and Calakmul, reaching the height of its development around 700 AD. The ruins are impressive here with a large plaza, terraces and stairs rising up to a huge palace. Yaxchilan is famous for its stellas scattered all around the site and very detailed carved relief inscription on the doorways of the main palace. Since few tourists make it here, the ruins are lost in a true jungle with massive and strange fruit trees, strangler figs, amazing flora, different lizards and iguanas, howler monkey screaming above your head, and bats lurking inside the ruined palaces. Wow!