Xunantunich Maya Ruins Tour

Xunantunich is a boom-and-bust city in the Belize River valley. This Maya ruin has the second tallest building in Belize known as the El Castillo measuring 130 feet above the plaza floor. El Castillo has a stucco frieze that wraps around the building now we can only see the west and east friezes

It has the only ball court in the central lowlands (Belize) that has a hoop showing influence from Chichen Itza indicating to archeologists that it traded relations with the great city after the classic collapse of 900AD. This magnificent site is the only site that has columns in the Belize River valley.

Xunantunich Mayan Ruins Tours are usually combined with Cahal Pech Mayan Ruins tour or Barton Creek Cave tour.

Join us and experience this amazing site with the second tallest building in Maya Building in Belize! This tour is an open plaza with little to no shade.

Xunantunich Maya Ruin Tips and Advisory

The name Xunantunich comes from the Yucatec Maya language which means “Stone Woman". The Core of the city contains a series of six plazas surrounded by more than 26 temples and palaces. One of its main pyramids is known as “El Castillo”, which is the second tallest structure in Belize measuring 130 ft from the plaza floor.

From the top of the pyramid, you can enjoy spectacular views overlooking miles of jungle and farmland with the towns of San Jose Succotz and Benque Viejo Del Carmen on the Belize side and Melchor de Mencos across the Guatemalan border. Of El Castillo’s two stucco friezes, the western side had most of the stucco destroyed, but the eastern frieze is more complete, clearly displaying various motifs and symbols of Maya astronomy and cosmology. The vaulted rooms at the top of El Castillo provide shade and are a welcome place to relax after the steep walk up and take in the views.

Xunantunich Maya Ruins Experience with Luis

Kawiil Tours is an inbound tour operator for Belize and is owned and operated by Luis Zaiden. Luis grew up in San Ignacio Town, Cayo district in the beautiful foothills of the Maya mountain. From a young age, Luis had a passion for history and nature. He spent most of his childhood with his friends playing in the river and also playing hide and seek in what is now Cahal Pech Archeological site. He never knew at the time that he would end up running his very own Tour Company. Nevertheless, that came to an end when he went to high school and eventually started working in Belize City.

KaWiil Tours offers the best of Western Belize. Luis and his licensed tour guides are well-trained and highly educated in Maya History. Travelers refer to Luis as having an "Encyclopedic Memory" of nature and history.

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    Here’s what people have to say about us

    KaWiil Tours
    Based on 49 reviews
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    Hannah Schilpp
    Hannah Schilpp
    02:55 15 Mar 24
    We did the cave tour with Luis and it was incredible! It... far surpasses our expectations. Luis knows his stuff and takes his time to share his knowledge. He’s also funny which made the trip more enjoyable! And his wife made a fabulous lunch!read more
    Niquita Eng
    Niquita Eng
    16:03 09 Mar 24
    So glad we got in with Luis! He took his time explaining... little details I think would have otherwise been missed. I really appreciate his professionalism and the high standards he holds tour guides to. Luis holds tour guides accountable for educating their tourists. He gave us factual information without dancing around things that may upset people because, history doesn't care too much about your beliefs. I learned alot on this tour and if you go in with an open mind, you will love it!read more
    Trey V
    Trey V
    14:15 08 Mar 24
    Luis was amazing. We took our 5 children (ages 7 to 17),... and Luis kept it fun and interesting for us all. Good pace, unbelievable depth of knowledge, and the best laugh we’ve heard. Our kids talk more about Luis than the cave. Can’t recommend him enough.read more
    Jeremy Himle
    Jeremy Himle
    02:49 21 Feb 24
    Just finished our tour of ATM cave today and had a blast... with Luis. While the other tour operators were rushing past us, Luis spoke about Mayan history and educated our group about historical events that shaped the cave history. He took his time and helped my girlfriend through difficult spots, and was observant to the needs of our small group. Many of the experiences we had were unique to other groups and I was so grateful for the memories he created. I’m sure that you might find a less expensive rush tour, but Luis has been guiding tours for over 20 years and it shows. I can’t recommend him enough. (Photo for attention purposes as no photos are allowed at ATM)read more
    Brian Chapman
    Brian Chapman
    02:23 17 Feb 24
    Our guide John was great! You could tell he really loves... his country and all the beauty it has to show us. Thanks for sharing with us.read more
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