Ruinas del Rey

This small site rests within the Cancun Hotel Zone. It was first sighted in the 16th century, rediscovered in 1842, and finally excavated in 1954. Ruinas del Rey (Ruins of the King) dates back to 200 BC and is thought to have been an astronomy lookout. Skeletons found on site also suggest it may have been a royal burial ground. While Del Rey is not as impressive as some of the other larger sites it is still worth a visit to see it unusual architecture. It has two main plazas flanked by two main streets (most ruins have only one) and a small pyramid topped with a vault. Inside are fresco paintings in fairly good condition. Today, its only residents are the large iguanas who like to bask on the walls and stones in the mid-afternoon heat. They add to the general tranquility amidst the modern bustle surrounding Del Rey. If you don’t have time to visit some of the larger sites, El Rey in an excellent introduction offering the flavor of ancient Maya cities. Open daily 8 AM to 5 PM. Admission: $3, free on Sundays. Located on Blvd. Kukulcán, Km. 17. 

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