This small site rests within the
Cancun Hotel Zone. It was first sighted in the 16th century, rediscovered
in 1842, and finally excavated in 1954. Ruinas del Rey (Ruins
of the King) dates back to 200 BC and is thought to have been
an astronomy lookout. Skeletons found on site also suggest it
may have been a royal burial ground. While Del Rey is not as impressive
as some of the other larger sites it is still worth a visit to
see it unusual architecture. It has two main plazas flanked by
two main streets (most ruins have only one) and a small pyramid
topped with a vault. Inside are fresco paintings in fairly good
condition. Today, its only residents are the large iguanas who
like to bask on the walls and stones in the mid-afternoon heat.
They add to the general tranquility amidst the modern bustle surrounding
Del Rey. If you don’t have time to visit some of the larger sites,
El Rey in an excellent introduction offering the flavor of ancient
Maya cities. Open daily 8 AM to 5 PM. Admission: $3, free on Sundays.
Located on Blvd. Kukulcán, Km. 17.