As of January 2nd, 2023 the access to the popular archaeological site of Chichen Itza is blocked.
In case you are wondering if Chichen Itza is open in 2023, months after the pandemic and travel to Mexico is possible with no restrictions, the answer is no.
Subsrcibe to our Newsletter and get our
Riviera Maya Guide FOR FREE!
On new years morning locals spread the word they would block the access to Chichen Itza, since their demands for a dialogue with the director of the site, Marco Antonio Santos Ramirez remain unheard for several years now.
In 2014 the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) swore in Marco Antonio Santos Ramírez as director of the Chichén Itzá Archaeological Zone, replacing Ricardo Nafate López.
Given the achievement obtained in the archaeological zone of Las entanas, in Zacatecas, the archaeologist became the director of Xochicalco was then appointed as the director of Chichén Itzá.
What means Chichen Itza?
Listen to our travel tips podcast with over 160 episodes.
In Mexico, the archaeological site that registered the most visits during 2022 was the Archaeological Zone of Chichen Itza, located in the state of Yucatan.
According to the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), this Friday, December 30, at 10:45 a.m., the 2.5 millionth visitor entered the site, making it the most visited archeological site this year. INAH is expected to present during the first half of 2023 a comprehensive project for the Chichén Itzá Archaeological Zone within the Archaeological Zone Improvement Program (Promeza), which would mean the largest economic investment at the federal level in an archaeological site. The project will include construction of a new museum and a Visitor's Center (CATVI).
CATVI, the new tourist attraction will be located by the sacred cenote, north of the main attraction "El Castillo", the restored step-pyramid & Maya temple which is the highlight of the Chichen Itza archaeological site.
Loca, artisans, merchants, independent workers and tourist guides blocked the archaeological site of Chichén Itzá since Tuesday morning to protest against the site's authorities, whom they accuse of preventing them from working there.
Among other demands, they request the resignation of Marco Antonio Santos Ramírez, who is in charge of this pre-Hispanic Maya site.
We've asked locals to provide more details to the subject in order to inform our guests and potential travelers of the Riviera Maya and Cancun area.
According to them, all the land for the future visitor center has already been allocated and there has never been any dialogue with the locals. It seems that the concessions were negotiated behind closed doors without the advisory board of the locals.
Coming from the Maya communities of Pisté, X-Calakoop and San Felipe, close to Chichén Itzá, the demonstrators claim that they are not being allowed to work in an orderly fashion.
Is Chichen Itza open?
Due to the peaceful manifestations by the inhabitants of the surrounding villages near the archaeological site of Chichen Itza, it is impossible to access the site, since the roads remain blocked.
As of this morning federal authorities are in the affected area to mediate and find a solution.
What is a great alternative to Chichen Itza?
Should you book, or already have booked one of our Chichen Itza Expeditions and the access remains closed, we will keep the exact itinerary as the original and just will replace the archaeological site with the one of your choosing.
Feel free to reach out prior or after you made your reservation to give us the chance to answer any questions you might have. We highly recommend to use our website's chat (downright corner) to clarify any questions. Our team of dedicated experts will be happy to help!
Why is Chichen Itza so popular?
Located in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico, Chichen Itza was a major city in the Maya civilization and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors to the city will be impressed by the well-preserved ancient buildings, including the Temple of Kukulcan, a massive pyramid that stands as a testament to the ingenuity and skill of the Maya people.
But Chichen Itza is more than just a collection of old ruins. It was also an important economic, political, and religious center in the Maya civilization, and a visit to the city offers a chance to learn about the history and culture of the Maya people.
In addition to its rich history and cultural significance, Chichen Itza is surrounded by the beautiful Yucatan Peninsula, which is home to a variety of other attractions and activities. Tourists can cool off in one of the region's many cenotes, relax on the sandy beaches, or spot some of the local wildlife.
No matter what your interests are, Chichen Itza has something to offer. So why wait? Start planning your trip to this special destination today and discover all that Mexico has to offer.
How to beat the crowds at Chichen Itza?
The only way to beat the crowds at Chichen Itza is to either get there before everyone else, or to get there after everyone else has left. Everyday coach loads of tourists arrive to explore the Mayan Ruins, with most of them arriving and leaving around the same time. Learn more tips provided by travel blogger Claire and her guest article: Tour Chichen Itza without the crowds
Stay up to date
To have some vacation in your everyday life and to stay in touch, just follow us on our Facebook page, and for more insider tips from frequent travelers and locals join our community "Riviera Maya Lovers".