Playacar Ruins - Playa del Carmen
Mayan Ruins Inside an Exclusive Residential Community
Jacque Costeau has long been credited for making Playa del Carmen and Cozumel popular but the Maya have been traveling between these two cities for centuries. The Playacar Ruins were a launching point for Maya women to honor the Goddess Ixchel on Cozumel Island. This annual spiritual pilgrimage was necessary in the eyes of the Maya for a healthy pregnancy and childbirth.
Spiritual Pilgrimage to Cozumel
The remaining three building groups of the original eight still exist within the exclusive Playa del Carmen community, Playacar. Both communities, one historic and one contemporary, are aligned more than most visitors know. Xaman Ha, the Mayan name for the Playacar ruins, was predominately a residential community during the Post-Classic period due to the easy access to Cozumel. Playacar boasts similar advantages; a peaceful residential community close to the Cozumel ferry and Caribbean Sea.
During the Post-Classic period, Xaman Ha, meaning waters to the north, was a fishing community on the extensive Mayan trade route. Trade would come from the northern communities of El Meco and El Rey, carry on to Tulum and be shipped into the coastal areas around Coba and beyond. The community was abandoned around 1526 due to the arrival of the Spanish in Mayan territory.
Fast Facts about Playacar Ruins
- The only free Mayan ruin site in Mexico – no entrance fees
- The only Mayan ruins maintained in an contemporary residential community
- Thought to be one of the first Mayan communities visited by the Spanish
- Original community has eight groups of buildings, only three remain
- Post-Classic architecture was a mix of stone bases, wood, and palm leaves
- One for three coastal Mayan communities that lead an annual female pilgrimage to Cozumel to honor the Goddess Ixchel
- Active during 1200 AD to 1526 AD, post-classic period
A Great Mayan Adventure in Playa del Carmen
The three remaining groups of buildings are labeled Groups C, E and F. These ruins can be viewed in Playacar Phase One and Playacar Phase Two. For those staying in Playacar Phase Two there is a short cut through the jungle to the small temples in Phase One.
Group E and F is one mile from the entrance to Playacar Phase Two. Visitors can walk Paseo Xaman Ha to the south. The ruins can be viewed from the roadway but do allow visitors to walk through the ancient grounds. Group C can also be accessed off Paseo Xaman Ha (a sign will direct you) through a small jungle path. If you are staying in Phase One, Group C can be accessed from Bahia Espiritu Santo. The ruins can be viewed from the road, and approached on foot.
Local schools conduct summer and winter solstice events at the Playacar Ruins in recognition of the local culture and history that built Playa del Carmen. Events are open to the public and participants are encouraged to join the celebrations.
Getting to the Playacar Ruins in Playa del Carmen
Playacar Phase One can be accessed off Avenida 10 just south of Calle 1 sur. on the east side of the Avenue. Playacar Phase Two is at the end of Avenida 10. This adventure is best done on foot, but a taxi can take you to both ruin locations if you wish to drive to the area.
Stay Close By
Playa del Carmen – Central| 1 to 2 Beds | 1 Bath
Contact us for special promotion and rates for all future dates! Surrounded by cascading waterfalls and tropical plants, Villas Sacbe is a luxury condominium complex with beautifully furnished 1 & 2 bedroom condominiums. Just 1 block from PDC’s main beach and trendy 5th Avenue.
Playacar – Playa del Carmen| 4 Beds | 3 Bath
Perfect for families seeking a home-like ambiance, elegant decor and only three bedrooms. Just 2 blocks off the beach in Playacar Phase 1. This home has a pool, air conditioning and a rooftop lounge area with grill. Fully equipped kitchen. Sleeps 6 people.
Playacar – Playa del Carmen| 5 Beds | 4 Bath
New Years Week Special, 25% off Starting Dec 30! Beautiful 4 bedroom, 4.5 bath beach house across the street from a great Playacar beach. Enjoy full AC, equipped kitchen, pool, rooftop heated Jacuzzi, awesome views, WiFi Internet, Sat TV.
Playacar – Playa del Carmen| 5 Beds | 4 Bath
Relax and refresh your senses at this extraordinary vacation home in Playacar! Located near downtown Playa del Carmen, this beautiful home is spacious and fully-equipped. When you stay here, you’re less than a 10-minute walk to famous 5th Avenue, the bustling pedestrian thoroughfare in the heart of Playa. But you’re in a serene and secure area, which means you can enjoy the best of both worlds!
Playa del Carmen – City Center| 3 Beds | 2 Bath
Spacious, modern and airy, each unit boasts a tasteful décor, an elegant open-floor living space, a fully-equipped kitchen, 2 beautiful king-size bedrooms and 2½ bathrooms. The entire wall of the living room is made of extensive glass sliders that welcome you to step onto the balcony terrace and savor the view.
Playacar – Playa del Carmen| 5 Beds | 5 Bath
From the moment you walk in the beautifully carved front door of this home, you know it’s special. It’s modern and at the same time has great Mayan and Mexican nuances. (Like brick domed ceilings and candelabra chandeliers. It should get top points for blending ambiance with practicality!)
Playa del Carmen – Central| 1 to 2 Beds | 1 to 2 Bath
Half a block from the beach, this gated condo complex is close to all the action Playa del Carmen offers. You’re a block from famous 5th Avenue, a pedestrian boulevard lined with hundreds of shops and restaurants of all kinds! Close but not too close.
Playacar – Playa del Carmen| 1-3 Beds | 1-3 Bath
Xaman Ha Condominiums are a perfect option for travelers and families with children who want to make seaside memories in the Riviera Maya in the ease of familiar surroundings and the safety of a gated community. Deluxe accommodations in 1, 2, and 3-bedroom units, each with an ocean view, are available for rental.
Playa del Carmen – Central| 1 to 4 Beds | 1 to 3 Bath
Deluxe condo rentals just across the street from Playa del Carmen main beach. Enjoy a luxurious interior, 1-3 bedrooms, AC, WiFi, full kitchen, facility pool, gardens, penthouse units have jacuzzi & partial ocean view. Sleeps 2-6.
Central Playa del Carmen| 1 to 3 Beds | 1 to 3 Bath
Special promotions and rates! Featuring 21 modern condominiums, 5-star service, and an impressive 70 foot long pool. Penthouses have private, spacious rooftop terraces with BBQ outdoor kitchens, heated Jacuzzis and panoramic views of the Caribbean.
Playacar – Playa del Carmen| 2 to 3 Beds | 2 to 3 Bath
A luxury condo complex in the upscale gated community of Playacar! This fantastic, first-class vacation destination is just across the street from the beach, in an exclusive golfing community.
North Playa del Carmen| 1 to 3 Beds | 2 Bath
Luxury beachfront condominiums in North Playa del Carmen offer deluxe 2 bedroom units, fully equipped kitchen, living and dining rooms, ocean view terrace. All face the Caribbean view over the beach side pool.