Discover the five Mayan Pyramids hidden in the yellow city.
Izamal is known as THE CITY OF THE HILLS. The first signs of occupation are from the year 750 B.C. during the late Classic period; however, the city was founded upon the arrival of the Chanes, a group of Mayans who came from Bacalar, later called the Itzá people, towards the year 550 A.D.
The archaeological zone is integrated amongst colonial and contemporary buildings of the modern city.
Izamal was one of the main sites of Mayan civilization, established as one of the main settlements in the plains in the north of the Yucatán peninsula. The size of its buildings and the network of roads are testament to the power it held over commerce and production of salt through the port of Xcambó.
It developed a particular construction technique based on the use of megalithic blocks, with rounded corners and pinafore moldings.
It was an important center for pilgrimage, as it was the seat of worship to the god Itzamatul.
The Kinich Kak Moo
pyramid is the most important, with a 200 by 200 meter base and a height is 34 meters. The building was dedicated to the Sun, a deity that came forth on a daily basis to collect its offerings, said to be seen in the form of a macaw of fire. To the southeast is another great pyramid called Itzamatul
. The southwestern side of the main plaza is bordered by another pyramid known as Hun Pik Tok. The public space is closed by the Temple of the Kabul
in the west.
The second great pyramid, which is called P’ap’hol – Chaak
was dedicated to the god Izamna
. This God was the God who had created the world for the Mayas. How important this sanctuary was can be seen from two facts. For one, the name of the city of Izamal
can be derived from it.
, according to chronicles, was the highest building in the pre-Hispanic city. The Franciscans, taking advantage of the bases, built one of the most important convents in the Yucatán peninsula.
The name of the still existing monastery buildings were named after the saint, San Antonio de Padua
. It was completed in 1516. Since they took advantage of the underlying space of the giant pyramid in the construction of the monastery, it has the second largest Atrium
in the world. Only the Vatican has a corresponding larger area.
The pyramids were abused as quarries for the construction of the monastery and the surrounding city buildings.
The first bishop of Yucatan resided in Izamal
and the fourth bishop Diego di Landa
lived here too. Diego di Landa
is remembered because he referred to the Writings of the Mayans
as a heretical work of the devil and burned
Projected in the arches below the belfry of the Third Order, four windows looking to the past and present of the splendor of the Mayan culture. It is a multimedia presentation in which image, sound and narration transport and envelop audiences in the greatness of the Maya. It begins with a tour of the actors dressed as monks, to give way to light and sound show.