Tulum Mayan Ruins

Vacation Travel Guide
Tulum Mayan Ruins featuring a ruin

Visit one of Yucatan’s most impressive Mayan ruins, perched high on cliffs overlooking the Caribbean Sea.

The Tulum Mayan Ruins are some of the most mysterious and picturesque pre-Hispanic ruins on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula.

The ruins are a cluster of well-preserved buildings, set within fortified walls that date to the 13th century. The ancient town was protected by high cliffs, the Caribbean Sea and a defensive wall, and is thought to have been an important trading post that thrived until the Spanish arrived in 1518.

The city of Tulum reached its peak between the 13th and 15th centuries, and was one of the last Mayan cities to fall to the Spanish. Today, despite their relatively small size, the ruins are one of the most visited archeological sites in Mexico.

Enter the ruins through the north wall and you’ll be immediately drawn to El Castillo, the most impressive building on the site. At 25 feet (7.5 meters) tall, it dominates the entire area. Since the structure is under protective conservation, you can only look up to El Castillo; entry is not permitted. Arrive early in the morning before the tour buses roll in. Even better, arrive just before dawn to experience the sun rising over the Caribbean Sea and slowly illuminating El Castillo. Swim in the crystal clear waters off Tulum and picture the trading canoes landing and disembarking from the sheltered cove beneath the towering ruins.

The ruins are open daily and there is a small entrance fee. The area itself is less than 1,640 feet (500 meters) in length, so allow an hour to visit, and wear comfortable shoes and a hat.

The town of Tulum Pueblo is approximately 2 miles (3 kilometers) south and has several great restaurants. The ruins are an hour’s drive from Playa del Carmen and about 80 minutes from Cancún. Buses run regularly from Cancún and Playa del Carmen. You can also take a shared van service. If you are driving to Tulum, note that the community has three sections: the ruins, the town and the beach (where many of the hotels are).

Top things to do in Tulum Mayan Ruins

Top Hotels Close to Tulum Mayan Ruins

Aloft Tulum by Marriott
Aloft Tulum by Marriott
4 out of 5
Av. Coba Sur Mz 5 Lt 1, Smz 1 Region 14, Tulum, QROO
The price is CA $130 per night from Jan 25 to Jan 26
Situated near the beach, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Tulum National Park, Tulum Mayan Ruins, and Tulum Beach. Playa Paraiso and Playa Ruinas are also ...
4.7/5 Exceptional! (91 reviews)
"The area was great! Right downtown and walkable to everything. The rooftop pool & bar were amazing. The view of the jungle was breathtaking. The staff were all so helpful. Free yoga classes on Thursday and Saturday mornings. I would highly recommend a stay here!"

Reviewed on Jan. 17, 2022

Aloft Tulum by Marriott
Copal Tulum Hotel
Copal Tulum Hotel
4 out of 5
Calle Ixchel sn, Tulum, QROO
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $144 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Situated in Tulum, this spa hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Dos Aguas Park and Tulum National Park. SFER IK and Las Palmas Public Beach are also within 3 mi (5 ...
4.1/5 Very Good! (234 reviews)
"We booked Copal Tulum for my 27th birthday celebration. We booked a 2 bedroom apartment and the space was massive! We had a beautiful view and private pool. My girlfriends and I truly enjoyed our stay here. Front desk, security, waiting staff were amazing and treated us like VIP guests. Gabriel was ..."

Reviewed on Jan. 11, 2022

Copal Tulum Hotel
Casa Kaia by Tulum Homes
Casa Kaia by Tulum Homes
3.5 out of 5
Aldea Zama, Mza 2, Lote 6 Y 7, Tulum, QROO
Situated near the beach, this apartment building is steps from Tulum Mayan Ruins and Tulum National Park. Playa Ruinas and Playa Paraiso are also within 2 mi ...
4/5 Very Good! (1 review)
"Very clean and spacious. However very noisy from surrounding construction"

Reviewed on Apr. 1, 2019

Casa Kaia by Tulum Homes
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Plan a trip to see Tulum Mayan Ruins

Hilton Cancun, an All-Inclusive Resort
SLS Cancun Hotel & Spa
The Elements Oceanfront & Beachside Condo Hotel

Popular places to visit in Tulum Mayan Ruins

Tulum Mayan Ruins

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Best Lodging Options Near Tulum Mayan Ruins

Aloft Tulum by Marriott
Aloft Tulum by Marriott
4 out of 5
Av. Coba Sur Mz 5 Lt 1, Smz 1 Region 14, Tulum, QROO
The price is CA $130 per night from Jan 25 to Jan 26
Aloft Tulum by Marriott
Copal Tulum Hotel
Copal Tulum Hotel
4 out of 5
Calle Ixchel sn, Tulum, QROO
The price is CA $144 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Copal Tulum Hotel
Casa Kaia by Tulum Homes
Casa Kaia by Tulum Homes
3.5 out of 5
Aldea Zama, Mza 2, Lote 6 Y 7, Tulum, QROO
Casa Kaia by Tulum Homes
Seafront vacation rental in Tulum - Mexico
Seafront vacation rental in Tulum - Mexico
Tulum, ROO
Seafront vacation rental in Tulum - Mexico
Soliman Bay vacation rental, Riviera Maya - Mexico
Soliman Bay vacation rental, Riviera Maya - Mexico
Tulum, ROO
Soliman Bay vacation rental, Riviera Maya - Mexico
5 bedroom oceanfront villa rental - Tulum, Riviera Maya
5 bedroom oceanfront villa rental - Tulum, Riviera Maya
Tulum, ROO
5 bedroom oceanfront villa rental - Tulum, Riviera Maya
Soliman Bay Luxury Villa rental - Riviera Maya
Soliman Bay Luxury Villa rental - Riviera Maya
Tulum, ROO
Soliman Bay Luxury Villa rental - Riviera Maya
Tankah Bay 5 bedroom villa rental, Riviera Maya
Tankah Bay 5 bedroom villa rental, Riviera Maya
Tulum, ROO
Tankah Bay 5 bedroom villa rental, Riviera Maya
3 bedroom villa rental Tulum - Riviera Maya
3 bedroom villa rental Tulum - Riviera Maya
Tulum, ROO
3 bedroom villa rental Tulum - Riviera Maya
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.