Valladolid really lived up to its reputation of being one of the most laid-back and charming cities in the Yucatan Peninsula. Its close proximity to popular sites like Cenote Suyton and Chichen Itza just adds to the appeal of this city and made our 2 day stay a truly memorable one.

Valladolid and Chichen Itza

Getting to Valladolid from Merida

We pretty much always used ADO buses to get around in Mexico. Bus ride from Merida to Valladolid took around 3 hours.

Things to do in Valladolid

Cenote Suytun

Planning our visit to this Cenote involved the standard online search to get a better understanding of what to expect. “Instagram worthy” and “Instagram famous spot” is how most people described this site. That’s never a good sign if like us, cringy Instagram poses are what come to mind. And that’s exactly what we were dreading. But hey, when in Rome right?

Suytun Cenote

Taxi from Valladolid to the Cenote cost us 120 MXN and took around 20 minutes to get there.

Entrance to the Cenote cost 150 MXN each (they only accepted cash).

For some reason, we decided to go to this Cenote wearing our trekking boots. Bad idea. You’re expected to take a shower before entering the Cenote so flip-flops would have made much more sense.

The Cenote itself is actually quite amazing. The light beam coming in from the ceiling is really beautiful and we were actually surprised with the number of catfish just casually swimming in the Cenote. 

The line to get a photo on the platform was a long one. While you should expect to wait a little till it’s your turn, everyone was generally respectful so the line moved quite fast.

Valladolid and Cenote Suytun

Chichen Itza

Valladolid certainly merits a visit just for its charm and laid back vibe. Its proximity to what was once a thriving Puuc city is just another reason why we’d highly recommend a visit to Vallaodild.

The archaeological site of Cichen Itza is spread over 12 square miles and its monumental center is divided into various architectural complexes.

Valladolid and Chichen Itza

In another post we mentioned how peaceful Uxmal was and where at times, it felt like we were the only visitors. Well, Chichen Itza couldn’t have been a more opposite version of that. Upon arrival at around 08:00, crowds of people were already lining up and waiting for the gates to open. 

It’s certainly understandable though. Each architectural complex within the site comes with its own story and rich history. We spent a whole afternoon at the site (without a guide in case you’re interested) and truly enjoyed taking in the ruins and the history behind them. 

Something which tainted the experience however, was the fact that it can feel like one huge market. Vendors line the whole site trying to coerce people in buying their goods/souvenirs which is quite unfortunate.

Valladolid and Chichen Itza

How do you get to Chichen Itza from Valladolid?

We used the Collectivo (small minivan) to get to the ruins. Tickets can’t be reserved ahead of time so we showed up at around 07:10. Only 2 spots were left so the minivan took off as soon as we arrived. 

Where is the Chichen Itza Collectivo minivan located?

The Collectivo parking lot is located right next to the ADO office in the city center. We were expecting some kind of office / desk but it’s really just a minivan parked outside of the lot waiting for people to show up and taking off once all seats are occupied.

Valladolid and Chichen Itza

How much does the Collectivo to Chichen Itza cost?

Collectivo to Chichen Itza costs 40 MXN and the ride takes around 40 minutes.

Parque Principal Francisco Cantón Rosado

This is the main public square of the city of Valladolid. The park has the church on one side of it, a fountain in the middle, and benches throughout. It’s a nice short tranquil walk in the heart of the city.

Valladolid and Chichen Itza

Cenote Zaci

Cenote Zaci was a short walk from our hotel so we figured we’d give it a look even though it was closed from swimming due to ongoing maintenance, and we could see it from the only restaurant which overlooks the Cenote.

We walked into the restaurant and saw the cenote from above. We could tell how a visit to the Cenote could be much more interesting when open but in our case, 10-15 minutes was more than enough. 

Valladolid and Cenote Zaci

Where to eat in Valladolid

One additional surprise from our visit to Valladolid came in the form of a few cozy restaurants in the city:

  • Restaurante El Atrio del Mayab
Valladolid restaurants
  • Moroni’s
Valladolid restaurants

2 thoughts on “2 days in Valladolid and Chichen Itza (Yucatan, Mexico)”

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