Tulum is the site of some fantastic and well-preserved Mayan ruins. Unlike the inland sites of Chichen Itza and Ek Balam, Tulum was a port city. It’s located right on the coast of the Caribbean Sea and was designed for trade with other nations. There is evidence that the Mayan people exported salt and feathers in exchange for gold, copper, ceramics, even obsidian and jade!
The ancient walled city of Tulum is the best-preserved of all the Mayan coastal settlements. It’s also home to some premium architectural marvels. Take, for instance, the weather warning system at the Temple of the Wind. When high-speed winds blow through the hole in the stonework, the loud whistle warns everyone in the city: take cover because there’s a hurricane on the way! (Fingers crossed, you will avoid tropical storm season on your Tulum tour, so you don’t have to hear it!)
Other impressive artifacts include the House of the Cenote (built in the shape of a rhombus to accommodate high-speed winds) and the House of Chultun (designed to divert and collect rainwater for later use). Even the walls themselves are fascinating. The varying heights of the stone wall may correspond to certain stars in the sky.
The Tulum archaeological site is so popular that a whole new city has sprung up around it: “Modern Tulum.” In the 1990s, locals noticed how much traffic was brought in by the ancient ruins and decided to add amenities to make tourists more comfortable. Today, Tulum is filled with hotels, restaurants, bars, and boutiques. It makes the stay even more worthwhile. By day, explore the ruins; enjoy life at a relaxing beachside resort by night.
What are you waiting for? Tulum’s unique cultural history is waiting to be discovered! Download a self-guided walking tour of Tulum.
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