Chichen Itza Facts

Chichen Itza is located in the eastern portion of Yucatán state in Mexico. This large pre-Columbian city was built by the Maya people. It was a major focal point in the Northern Maya Lowlands from the 600 AD to 1200.

This man-made wonder is one of the most visited archaeological sites in Mexico. It is appointed by the UNESCO as World Heritage and considered one of the "New Seven Wonders of the World".

Below are some of the facts about Chichen Itza:

  • Chichen Itza got enlisted as a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO in 1988.
  • Chichen Itza is also one of the 7 Wonders of the World as per the new updated list.
  • This structure belongs to the Mayan Civilization, and is one of the most visited monuments in Mexico.
  • There is a much old temple on the site over which sits this famous huge pyramid structure of Chichen Itza. This pyramid temple is called the Temple of Kukulkan or the El Castillo.
  • The city was in full life in the 600 AD, and was economically strong and grew as a capital between 600 and 1050 AD. Only after that it is believed to have fallen.
  • The clusters which are most popular are, the Ossario Group, the Old Chichen, the Central Group, and the Great North Platform. The Great North Platform contains the El Castillo, the Temple of the Jaguars, and the Great Ball Court.
  • It is during the spring and autumn Equinoxes that a strange shadow is formed by the Pyramid of Chichen Itza when the sun rays fall on the structure. The shadow looks like a snake on the staircase of the temple.
  • Mayans were devotees of the planet Venus and also followed the movement of the planet and their whole city buildings were influenced by the astronomical effects of Venus. That is why there is a platform dedicated to the planet at the north side of the El Castillo pyramid.
  • The Osario is the second most popular pyramid after the Kukulcan, and there is a small natural cave at the centre of the pyramid.
  • Unusual sounds are felt and experienced at the Chichen Itza. Clapping once in front of the El Castillo creates an echo which sounds like the sound of a snake. Again clapping once from one part of the Blass Court creates 9 echo sounds at the center of the court.
  • The literary meaning of Chichen Itza is ‘the mouth at the well of Itza’ where Itza refers to magicians of the water.
  • The place where Chichen Itza was built contained two sink holes which is believed to have provided natural source of water round the year. But one of the holes were also used for human sacrificing to the Chac God by the Mayans to get rain and water as and when there were spells of drought.
  • The ruins of the city are visited every year by almost 1.2 million visitors.