The ancient Mayan temples: Great assets from the golden era

Image Source: Travel Triangle

Mayan religion was cultivated during the pre-Columbian civilization. Even after centuries, we are lucky to still have Mayan temples on the face of the earth. During the peak from 250 to 900 AD, they built multiple monuments in major cities and Mayan temples were included in it. 

Right now, this ancient religion is almost lost to us. But, we can still witness and admire the beauty of some of the ancient Mayan temples. At present, these temples are situated in countries like Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, South Mexico and West Honduras.

El Castillo in Tinum: This is one of the most exceptional Mayan temples and was built between the 9th and 12th centuries in Chichen Itza city. Today this magnificent site is part of Yucatan State in Mexico where it welcomes a huge number of visitors. ‘The temple of Kukulcan’ is another well-known name for it. 

This structure is a Mesoamerican step-pyramid with a unique astronomical design. Each face of the pyramid has 91 steps which add up to 365, a total number of days in a year.   

2. Pyramid of the magician in Uxmal: This beautiful temple was built during the 6th to 10th centuries when Uxmal city was the capital of the Mayan region. Today, it’s standing in Yucatan State in Mexico and increasing the value of the Mayan temples. ‘Pyramid of Dwarf’, ‘Casa El Adivino’ and ‘Pyramid of Soothsayer’ are the different names of it. When the Spanish army attacked the area they looted and destroyed the temple. 

This Mesoamerican step pyramid is the tallest at 115 feet which is why it’s the most famous one among other Mayan temples. Unlike other Mayan temples, the layers of this ancient temple are oval.

3. The temple of inscriptions in Palenque: This monument was built 600 to 800 AD on the West edge of the Maya region. Today, it stands in Chiapas state in Mexico. This Mesoamerican pyramid was built to honor K’inich Janaab’ Pakal, the ruler of the area in the 7th century after his death. 

 This is the only temple that is a funerary monument, so it stands out from other Mayan temples. This temple is one of the finest examples of the Mayan temples’ architecture. 

4. Rosalila temple in Copan: This temple was built in a small city of the Mayan region that’s now part of Copan Ruinas in Honduras. This is the most preserved and visited among the other Mayan temples. Beautiful stucco design on the entrance that was originally painted white enhances the charm of the temple. Interesting thing is, Mayans buried this Mesoamerican structure under the soil.

5. Calakmul in Tinum: This monument was built in one of the largest cities in the Mayan region that’s now part of Campeche in Mexico. This Mayan temple is 180 feet tall. 

6. Temples in Tikal, Guatemala: Tikal was the largest city in the Mayan region and now it’s part of Guatemala. The city has many monuments and 6 among them are the Mayan temples. One of the temples is 230 feet tall and is part of a popular ancient city’s area.

7. Temples of Coba in Tulum: Around 1200 AD multiple large Mayan temples were built in the ancient city of Coba which is now part of the East coast of Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. ‘Nohoch Mulgroup’ is the name of the tallest temple in the area with 138 feet in height.

8. Xunantunich in Belize: This is one of the famous Mayan temples in Belize that’s located on the Western highway. It’s across the river near San Jose Succotz village that welcomes many visitors. 

9. Yaxchilan Structure 33 in Chiapas: The ancient city Yaxchilan sitting on the bank of the Usumacinta River that’s part of Chiapas State in Mexico. According to the research, this temple was built to honor the Bird Jaguar IV. Among all the Mayan temples this one is counted as a stone masterpiece. 

10. The high temple in Lamanai: Lamanai was one of the major cities in the Mayan region which is now part of Belize. The high temple is 33 meters tall which is of the great architectural beauty of the Mayan temples. 


Mayan temples are holding ages-old secrets from us due to a lack of knowledge of this ancient civilization. Although, these ruins of the Mayan temples give us enough gist of their gigantic culture.

Disclose more details of the ancient civilizations at the Secret Temples.


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