Explore Chichen Itza's ritual Ball Court and sacred well

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Attraction

Chichen Itza's more than 15 main archeological structures are elaborately decorated with images of giant serpents, jaguars and costumed god-kings. Ancient in bas-relief sculptures, engravings and carved columns stand tall like stone snapshots from a time long ago. Many ruins also depict portraits of the Maya themselves.

One must-see hallmark is the Great Ball Court of Chichen Itza. At 166 metres by 69 metres, the court is the largest Mayan sports arena in all of Mesoamerica-sort of like an ancient basketball court!

Back in the day, the arena held epic ritual games where contestants attempted to direct a heavy rubber ball through the engraved rings centred high on two flanking walls. This incredible space is brilliantly engineered for acoustics as well. Even subtle whispers will carry the length of the I-shaped arena.

If you head south, past the merchants and their hand-made crafts, you'll come across the most important of the ancient Mayan astrological structures: the spiral Observatory. This observatory, also known as The Caracol or The Snail, used precisely placed windows, doorways and water-filled pillars to reflect celestial bodies which aligned on important Mayan dates.