Palenque, Mexico

“I have found that there ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate people than to travel with them.” Mark Twain

palenqueLocated in the state of Chiapas not far from the Guatemalan border, Palenque is a magnificent ancient pre-Columbian Mayan city, which after being abandoned was swallowed up by the surrounding jungle and not located again for hundreds of years.

Evidence shows that the city flourished in the 7th century with a time frame dating back as far as 226 BC and ending abruptly in 799 AD. palanque11-1-of-11The site, which is quite a bit smaller than other famous ones holds examples of some of the finest architecture, sculpture and features of any ruin site in Mexico.

The main draws are the palace and several temples within the main complex area. These ruins, highlighted by ancient inscriptions, carvings and stunning stonework are truly mesmerizing and take hours to view properly.

While climbing these monoliths, as one views the surrounding jungle and the mist hanging over the surrounding hills, it is easy to imagine the ancient Mayan people palanque6-1-of-11coming and going about their business in this ancient community.

The main draws are the palace and several temples within the main complex area. These ruins, highlighted by ancient inscriptions, carvings and stunning stonework are truly mesmerizing and take hours to view properly.

While climbing these monoliths, as one views the surrounding jungle and the mist hanging over the surrounding hills, palanque10-1-of-11it is easy to imagine the ancient Mayan people coming and going about their business in this ancient community.

To view the city, it’s best to organize a tour or other transportation with a small group in the nearby city of Palenque, where you can easily get to and from the site with little hassle.

To get to Palenque city you can take a bus from many larger cities in Mexico. I recommend recommending visiting other vibrant local palanque5-1-of-11areas such as San Cristobal de las Casas.

To view the city, it’s best to organize a tour or other transportation with a small group in the nearby city of Palenque, where you can easily get to and from the site with little hassle.

To get to Palenque city you can take a bus from many larger cities in Mexico. I recommend recommending visiting other vibrant local areas such as San Cristobal de las Casas.

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17 thoughts on “Palenque, Mexico

    1. Thanks. Most of these pre-Colombian sites were ruined by the time the westerners encountered them and in fact a larger part of what we see here and in other sites such as Chichen Itza are partially rebuilt.

      The societies collapsed, but the people remained in the area. There are several theories as to why this happened, with the most favored being some combination of drought, warring and over-population, which caused upheaval and abandonment of such civilizations. This region is still heavily populated by the descendants of such people.

  1. This was one of my favourites in Mexico and to think it is only a quarter excavated just blows my mind! Coming from Australia I was overwhelmed by the history of Mexico and wish I had more time to explore the ruins in the South-those Mayan civilisations were one incredible civilisation! Thanks for your post

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