Oxtankah is one of the newer ruins uncovered along the shores of Chetumal bay. First discovered by Raymond Merwin in 1913 and again by Thomas Gann in 1926, it was left abandoned until the early 1983 when work began on the site. By 1996, full excavations were under way. Built during the Early Classic period (AD 200 – 600), it played an important role in trade because of its locations. The city, includes temples, sunken palaces, seats, patios and isolated constructions and reached the edge of the bay finally including the nearby island of Tamalcab. The Plaza de las Abejas, (Plaza of the bees), Plaza de las Columnas, (Plaza of the columns) the Cenote and the remains of a Spanish church make this site worth a visit. Archaeologists believe that this church is the oldest in the area and that is was built by the Chaktemal Kingdom started by Gonzalo Guerrero. Guerrero along with Jeronimo de Aguilar were the first Spaniards to reach the Maya after their ship was wrecked on the reef outside Cozumel. They were taken prisoners and remained with the Maya for many years. Guerrero completely assimilated with the Maya, marrying a Maya princess, helping the Maya to fight the Spaniards and starting his own city. His offspring, known as the Mestizo are considered the founders of the Mexican race and he is a hero among the Maya. Interestingly, De Aguilar who returned to the Spanish and helped them defeat the Maya, is considered a hero in Spain. Open daily 8 AM- 5 PM. Admission: $1, Sundays and holidays free. Located approximately 16 kilometers north of Chetumal. Take the Chetumal-Calderitas highway and continue on the asphalt road that borders the bay north to 4.5 kilometers to site.
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