The 5 Most Important Archaeological Zones Of Chiapas

Most of the archaeological zones of Chiapas  were cities built during the splendor of the Mayan culture , 1700 years ago. This territory was the cradle of the Mesoamerican Olmec, Mayan and Chiapas cultures during pre-Columbian times.

Chiapas is a Mexican state located in the southwestern region of the country that was founded on September 20, 1786.

It has a territorial extension of 72,211 km 2 and in 2015 its population was estimated at 5,217,908 inhabitants.

The large number of archaeological zones in Chiapas preserve the cultural heritage of the region and represent the fundamental axis of one of the main regional economic activities: tourism.

You may also be interested in the traditions of Chiapas or its history .

The 5 main archaeological zones of Chiapas

1- Palenque

It is located 90 km southeast of Villahermosa. This archaeological city reveals the myths, rituals and beliefs of the Mayan culture under its imposing architecture.

Palenque appears in the pages of history as the most important ceremonial center of the Mayan culture.

Its church is one of the most striking buildings in the city. It preserves one of the 3 bells that its founder, Fray Pedro Lorenzo de la Nada, gave to the community in 1573, as a symbol of its foundation.

More than 200 architectural structures were built in its 16 km 2 of surface. The most relevant are the Great Palace, Temple XI, the Temple of Inscriptions, and the Temples of the Sun , of the Foliated Cross and of the Count.

In particular, the most lavish tomb in America stands out, one of the 13 Mexican wonders that in turn has been recognized as a World Heritage Site.

2- Bonampak

It is located in the Lacandon jungle of Chiapas. This archaeological zone was formerly a Mayan city that in 790 AD. C. was abandoned and lost in the jungle for almost 12 centuries.

In its 4 km 2 of surface you can see the Great Plaza and the Acropolis, its main buildings. These were built on the hills that run through the center of the valley.

The Gran Plaza building stands out for housing Stela 1, the most amazing and best-preserved group of murals from the Mayan culture.

This pictorial work relates the planning of a combat, its realization and the celebrations for the triumph in battle.

3- Chinkultic

It is located 49 km east of Comitán de Domínguez. This ancient Mayan city was built on a series of limestone hills, in the middle of the Azul cenote and the Chanujabab and Tepancuapan lagoons.

In an area of ​​more than 3 km 2,  the 4 main nuclei that make it up were erected.

This archaeological treasure combines the majesty of the landscape with the ancient Mayan architecture, and is one of the favorite destinations of tourists from the 5 continents.

4- Yaxchilán

It is located on the banks of the Usumacinta River, surrounded by a dense blanket of tropical forests. This Mayan city had its heyday between 250 to 900 AD. C.

It is distinguished by the sculptural art reflected in its spectacular buildings. Among the most prominent are the Labyrinth, the Ball Court, the Great Plaza, the Great Acropolis, the Little Acropolis, and the South Acropolis.

5- Izapa

It is located in the municipality of Tuxtla Chico. This archaeological zone was founded in 1500 BC. C. and is the link between two of the greatest Mesoamerican cultures: Olmec and Mayan.

For a millennium it was the most important civil and religious center of the Olmec culture, located in the vicinity occupied by Mayan groups with whom they carried out commercial operations.

Its ruins show the existence of more than 160 buildings, among which are pyramids and platforms of considerable height.


  1. Get to know Chiapas. (sf). Retrieved on November 13, 2017 from:
  2. Chiapas. (sf). Retrieved on November 13, 2017 from:
  3. Mariscal, A. (February 16, 2011). More than 40,000 Mayan Archaeological Zones of Chiapas, Still Unexplored. In:
  4. Maya world. Chiapas. (sf). Retrieved on November 13, 2017 from:
  5. Archaeological Zones of Chiapas. (sf). Retrieved on November 13, 2017 from:

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *