Ek Balam and Cenote X'canche

Ek Balam: The amazingly well-preserved sculptures uncovered at Ek Balam, 175 miles west of Cancun, are exciting for every visitor.
Dating from between 100 BC and 1200 BC, Ek Balam is unlike any other Mayan site.
The main temple is impressive with its massive size of over 500 feet long and 200 feet wide.
The intricate detail of the artistry and symbolism incorporated into the frescoes and sculptures which decorate the temple is an artistic marvel.
Ek Balam´s most striking temple has a huge ¨monster mouth¨, which, to the Maya, represents a portal to the ¨other world¨ or underworld.
The enormous mouth or entry to the underworld, complete with teeth, is awe-inspiring. Some figures are winged, some in the meditative ¨lotus¨ position and one sits headless above the center of the entry to the underworld.
All are beautiful and exquisitely crafted. Evidence has been found at Ek Balam that bloodletting rituals were practiced here, self-inflicted by the priest and nobles.

The X’canche Cenote is located just one mile from the archaeological site of Ek Balam and is the perfect place to cool off and practice some adventure sports such as snorkeling, mountain biking or rappelling. A "cenote" is a floooded cavern where the limestone has collapsed into the underground water system, sometimes creating an opening and an amazing swimming hole.
The Cenote is formed by vertical walls with a spectacular drop of forty-five feet to the water level within it.
(There are no surface rivers on the Yucatan Peninsula; all rivers are subterranean).
The water often is very clear, coming from rainfall, filtering slowly through the ground, to the stalactites and stalagmites and marine fossils beneath.
Some cenotes are suitable for scuba diving while others are more suited to excellent snorkeling.


6:45 - 7:15 - Healthy All-you-can-eat Breakfast Buffet.
7:15 - Departure from the Lodge
9:00 - Arrival at Ek Balam and Cenote X'Canche
9:00 - 11: 00 - Your Ek Balam guided tour
11:45 - 12:45 - Lunch at Cenote X'canche - Yucatecan cuisine, prepared by courteous Mayan women, making delicious dishes with homemade tortillas. 11:00 - 13:00 - First, you choose between biking or walking through the jungle, and once you arrive at Cenote X'Canche, you will have the opportunity to experience the incredible sensation of swimming and/or snorkelling in its clear water. You can also cross the cenote on a zip-line or do rappelling.
13:00 - 14:30 - Lunch at Cenote X'canche - Yucatecan cuisine, prepared by courteous Mayan women, making delicious dishes with homemade tortillas.
15:00 - Departure from Ek Balam
17:00 - Arrival back at the Lodge
18:00 - All-you-can-eat Dinner Buffet

    • Archaeology
    • Mayan Ruins
    • Cenote
2 reviews
5.00 out of 5

Lodge to Ek Balam 81 miles - 131 km - 1h 22 min


Wear light clothes, shorts are very appropriate, comfortable shoes, swim suit, towel, cap, sun glasses, extra clothes, biodegradable sunscreen, insect repellent, some extra cash. Don"t forget your camera!


Transportation, bilingual guide, Attraction / Adventure Activities fees, lunch and tax,


Activities, meals and drinks in your free time.



Pregnant women, person with hearth diseases, diabetes, epilepsy, asthma, hypertension or claustrophobia.



  • Tripadvisor Member
    5.00 out of 5

    We've been to a lot of Mayan sites in the Yucatan, Campeche and Quintana Roo, but never saw the fine preservation/restoration as at the Ek Balam pyramid. The old Maya road into the site proceeds through a stately Maya vaulted archway. The small site is interesting and quiet; not a lot of visitors here. The pyramid, though, it the centerpiece. Be prepared to climb steep steps to get up to the sculpted doorways. We were told that the pyramid is actually higher than El Castillo at Chichen Itza.
    As you park, kids will offer to watch your car for a few pesos. I don't know if it's really needed, but we gave them a few pesos.

Add a review