Maya Museum and Ruins in One Location
San Miguelito Ruins is located on the property of the Cancun Mayan Museum, a great combination that deepens visitors understanding of the Maya community. The museum has a wonderful archive of Mayan artifacts from various Mayan archaeological sites. The ruin site of San Miguelito compliments the museum beautifully. Located to the west of the El Rey ruins in the Cancun Hotel Zone at KM 16.5, there are some wonderful surprises at this location.
Learn More About the Maya in this Museum-Archaeological Site Combo
San Miguelito is one part of various settlements found in and around Cancun; El Rey, El Meco and The ruins of Ixchel on Isla Mujeres. These communities strategically placed their buildings behind sand dunes that ran north and south along the Caribbean and shores of the lagoons. San Miguelito is the only site that has evidence of the protective dunes. All of these sites were part of the Post-Classic Mayan trade network that delivered and exported products throughout the Caribbean.
The name San Miguelito was an adopted name. In the 1950s the ruins were found on a coconut ranch called San Miguelito. The original Mayan name is unknown.
The site has four distinct areas; The Chaak Palace, the North Complex, the South Complex and the Dragon complex. The Chaak and Southern Complex are noteworthy, as these areas have well preserved pyramids and small structures.
One Entrance Fee for the Museum and San Miguelito Ruins
The only entrance into the San Miguelito ruins is through the Cancun Mayan Museum. The ruins are located at the far east section of the museum. Each of the four sections of the ruins are connected by beautiful paths that wind through indigenous trees and palms. Shade covers all walking areas, making our stroll through the ruins heavenly.
The Chaak Palace in the center of the site, is a tall structure, 4 to 5 stories high, that has spacious interior rooms, though entry into the palace and climbing of the structure is prohibited. There are four staircases going up each side of the palace. The Mayan God Chaak is carved into each stone of the stairwell. Along the palace is a structure thought to be an administrative building that has remnants of columns.
In the Dragon Complex take note of the hieroglyphics drawn on the small block of a building. One drawing is of a bird, the other of a crocodile. Though faint, you can still see the outline.
The South Complex buildings are significant as one palace shows evidence of three architectural types. This could date the location before the Post-Classic period, or provide insight into the influences this society had, but the evidence is inconclusive.
What We Loved About the San Miguelito Ruins
We loved that San Miguelito is on the grounds of the Cancun Mayan Museum. We love the trails that connect each complex and the excessive amount of trees that provided shade. San Miguelito is just 1.5 kms/1 mile from the El Rey ruins making it easy to walk between the two ruin sites. Friendly note: we loved the taco place across the street located in a Deli/Drug store. Cheap and cheerful food can be found in the back of the store!
How To Get to the San Miguelito Ruins
Located at KM 16.5 in the Cancun Hotel Zone you can access this site by public bus from the ADO bus station or by car. It is easy to get to and easy to spot along the road.