- Type: Sightseeing
- Time to Spend: 2 hours to Half Day
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The source of Tulum's popularity (and probably the reason you'll visit the area) are the Tulum ruins, one of the most popular Mayan archaeological sites along the Riviera Maya. Sitting on a patch of rocky coastline just south of Tulum's downtown, the ruins showcase several templos (temples) and castillos (castles) from the once-thriving pre-Colombian Mayans.
If you've already been to Chichen Itza, Tulum might prove a bit lackluster. The ruins do not compare, according to both travelers and writers. The area isn't necessarily large nor is the architecture the most grandiose. But the scenery is dramatic; the ruins sit over the sea atop a small cliff, offering visitors beautiful views of the surrounding landscape. As Lonely Planet says, "those Maya occupants must have felt pretty smug each sunrise."
Travelers recommend you bring a sun hat and sneakers, since you'll likely be walking around under the sun for most of the day. Don't forget your swimsuit either because the calm beautiful beach just below the ruins provides an excellent and dramatic swimming opportunity.
The park is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for a small entrance fee. A paid permit is also required to take video.