The Best Little Known Sites at Chichen Itza


If you plan on making a trip to Chichen Itza, then you’ll be sure to see many of the main attractions, such as the Great Ballcourt, El Castillo, and the Observatory. What you want to keep your eyes open for are the few little known ruins and sites that many pass up without notice. After all, the big things are easy to notice, it’s the little things that make their trip worth your wild.

The Red House is named this because of the flakes and scrapes of red paint that were found inside the structure. It was built on a high platform, and is pronounced Chichen Choob in the Mayan language. It is translated as “small holes” and most assume it points to the lime comb roof.


The entire structure is designed into four rooms, an antechamber and three additional chambers. The main room has detailed hieroglyphic inscriptions, which is the main point of this ancient structure. Many archaeologists believe this site had either a public or even religious use, since there is a smaller ballcourt attached to the east side of the building. Radiocarbon dating has put the ruins of the Red House back to 780 A.D

The Temple of the Three Lintels

This temple is less of a temple and more of a residence. Due to its careful elegance, many archaeologists believe that it was a residence for Mayan nobility. It’s located in the southern area of Chichen Itza, in the Late Classic zone. On each of the three lintels there are hieroglyphic inscriptions that have been dated to 899 A.D.

The buildings outer walls are simple but topped at each corner with masks of their rain god, Chac, displaying an extended nose. The Mayans have made Chac, a theme in many of their buildings. The Mayans desiged at least one mask in nearly every structure they built.

The name of this little known ruin is derived from the many hieroglyphic panels that are found on the northern and southern walls. The images depict many different parts of Mayan life, including people, plants, and animals. These panels also include imaginary beings that they either loved or hated.

The ruins are built on a slab foundation with a colonnade built in front of it. There have been several offerings discovered throughout numerous excavations of Mayan fire rituals present at the site.

The Temple of the Bearded Man

The reason that this is a little known site is because the Great Ballcourt is near it. That proximity is offsetting for the small ruins of the Temple of the Bearded Man. The temple is named that because of the several depictions of bearded men designed within it. Many guests try to compare their own faces and beards to the ones in the designs.


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