Quintana Roo is known for being the Mexican Caribbean state, destination of sun and beach. A lot of culture awaits you here, surely some archaeological zone of Quintana Roo surprises you.

The state of Quintana Roo encompasses much of the tourism of Mexico, Cancun and Riviera Maya are a leading tourist destination internationally. In the northern part of Quintana Roo is where tourism is concentrated, the southern zone is full of much more protected cultural experience.

Sure you are surprised by several archaeological sites of Quintana Roo, let's take a short walk through them.

Do not miss the 5 Mayan pyramids of Mexico most incredible

archaeological zones quintana roo


We will get to know the great archeological zones of Quintana Roo, those that we recommend not to get lost in your visit. Or at least they'll sign you up for the next visit around here 😉

El INAH administers 14 archaeological zones of Quintana Roo with payment entrance.

  • Muyil, Tulum, Cobá, Xel-Há and Xcaret in the Riviera Maya area
  • El Rey, San Miguelito and El Meco in Cancun
  • San Gervasio on the island of Cozumel.
  • Kohunlich, Dzibanché-Kinichná, Oxtankah, and Chacchoben, in the south of Quintana Roo


Tulum is the postcard of the Mexican Caribbean, the best known archaeological site of Quintana Roo. It is very difficult not to go for being the icon of Riviera Maya. Here it is difficult to dodge the masses of tourists, but nevertheless it retains its charm. 

  • THE BEST: the panoramas that Tulum gives you next to the sea, and the beach that has, where you can bathe if the tide is not high (they close it in this case) 
  • WORST: the number of people who visit it makes it very difficult to visit it calmly

How to get to Tulum

Tulum archaeological zone of Quintana Roo


Cobá It is a very complete city to visit for its history, vestiges and surroundings. Can visit it on foot or by bike, good part of the road for shade, something very positive in this hot climate. Coba has emblematic steles within the Mayan world.

  • THE BEST: Climb to the highest temple of the archaeological sites of Quintana Roo: a temple of 42 meters high, from where you can see the plain Peninsula The views are breathtaking.
  • WORST: the only bad thing is its proximity to Riviera Maya, it represents many visitors, but you can always dodge the masses.

How to get to Cobá

archaeological sites of Quintana Roo


Muyil is an archaeological site that despite being small is in an area of jungle in the Sian ka'an Biosphere Reserve That is to enjoy. Stones and nature combine perfectly in Muyil, one of the most important ports of the Mayan civilization.

  • THE BEST: From Muyil, there is an interpretive path that leads you through the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve to the lagoon. Boat trips leave here.
  • WORST: Like Cobá, its proximity to Riviera Maya makes it more visited than normal.

How to get to Muyil

archaeological sites of Quintana Roo


Kohunlich is my undoing, an archaeological site with an impressive charm. His famous masks are the icon of one of the most impressive remains in the south. Its palms and its natural environment together with the impressive buildings and history of the place make it essential for me. Sometimes monkeys are seen, also 😉

  • THE BEST: The walk in the jungle environment closed with those palms is wonderful. The masks are print.
  • WORST: Hard to find something, I would say mosquitoes at some times of the year.

How to get to Kohunlich

Kohunlich Quintana Roo archeological zone


Dzibanché is another beautiful and historic city in the south of Quintana Roo where you can taste the history between steles, buildings, stucco and engravings that will not leave you indifferent. In Dzibanché the Kaan lineage originates, one of the most powerful of the Mayan civilization. You visit a very powerful vestige loaded with stories. It's easy for you to be accompanied by monkeys in Dzibanché, a walk through the wonderful jungle. 

  • THE BEST: there are stucco reliefs that are wonderful and cannot be seen in other cities. There are many details in Dzibanché, the space is wonderful.
  • WORST: You will usually be practically alone, except when the cruise tours arrive from Mahahaual, just that little detail.

How to get to Dzibanché

Mayan archeological zone

Tips for visiting the archaeological sites of Quintana Roo:

SCHEDULES AND SERVICES OF THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL AREAS: They open from 8 to 5 in the afternoon. Many close the lockers at 4 in the afternoon. All have bath services, in the largest you find where to buy water and crafts at the entrance.

PRICES ARCHAEOLOGICAL AREAS OF QUINTANA ROO: Tickets range from 55 pesos to 80 pesos. On Sundays, entry to INAH is free for Mexicans and permanent residents with accreditation. The access to the archaeological zones is free every day to Mexicans • Older than 60 years (with official identification) • Retired and pensioners (with official institution credential) • Teachers and students (with official credential of the Mexican Educational System) • Children up to 12 years • Researchers and interns (with INAH permission)

WHAT TO BRING VISITS TO THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL AREAS OF QUINTANA ROO? In Quintana Roo it is hot all year round, so we recommend the following: light and light clothing, a hat that covers your head and the head well, closed and comfortable shoes to climb structures and protect you from insect bites. Carrying water always goes well, there are no services or sell water inside the enclosure. Visits can last perfectly more than an hour and a half, hydrate continuously. Mosquito repellent and sunscreen if you are not well covered with clothing.

Those of you who like archeology would certainly not miss any of the archeological sites, the truth is that they all have their beauty and particularity. The lists are a way to facilitate the choice to those who know less the destination. I hope you have a nice trip through these lands.

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Sandra Salvadó Training photographer, traveler by vocation and certified tourism guide by the Government of Mexico. We promote natural wonders and contemporary Mayan culture. Great fan of pre-Hispanic history. Author of the blog and co-founder of The Shortest Path Travel, agency that guides you through alternative paths in Mayan lands. Social and sustainable tourism in the Yucatan Peninsula and Chiapas.
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