The village of Ducaj near Boge, Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Tirana Airport, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Porto, Portugal on June 25th!

Monday, February 13, 2012

The Ruins at Xochicalco

We've been to several ruins sites in Mexico, and all of them are a little bit different. Yesterday, we made our way to the Unesco World Heritage site of the Xochicalco ruins. This site is fascinating simply because of the size of it, with fantastic views in all directions.

But first, we had to get there! You know that we like to do things inexpensively, but sometimes we are too cheap for our own good. We found out that it should cost 120 pesos ($9.60) to simply take a taxi to the ruins site about 22 kms (13.5 miles) away. But we had lots of time so we figured we'd try taking the local buses.

First, we flagged down a motorcycle taxi for the almost two kms into town. This town has these little buggies pulled by a small motorcycle. They don't go very fast, but you wouldn't want them to! It's just better than walking and only cost 5 pesos (40 cents). Then, we caught the bus to Cuernavaca and asked the driver to let us off where we could catch another bus going in the direction of the ruins. This bus cost 15 pesos ($1.20). He let us off and we walked across the road to catch another bus. We asked a couple of ladies who were waiting if they knew how to get to the ruins, and they didn't seem sure but we ended up getting on the same bus as them after they spoke to the driver and then nodded their heads at us. This bus cost 12 pesos (96 cents). By the way, we haven't spoken English to anybody but ourselves since Lindsey and Cameron left! By the time we got to the next town we actually saw signs pointing to the ruins site about 10 kms away. But then the bus driver stopped and told us we had to get off at this stop if we wanted to go to the ruins. Okay, so we got off and there were a bunch of taxi's around. By this point, we asked the driver how much to get to the ruins and he said 70 pesos ($5.60) so we hopped in the taxi. So it cost us a total of 102 pesos to get there, where it would have 120 pesos to take a taxi right from the beginning. We saved a whole 18 pesos ($1.44)!

Then, it was 57 pesos ($4.56) each for admission. This included entrance to the museum, where we went before the ruins.

Some of the artifacts found at the site. 

Ruth, and the grand pyramid.

It was a Sunday, so there were a few people around.

But the site is so big that sometimes it felt like we were the only ones there. There were three separate "ball courts". Most ruins sites only have one.

Kevin, and the detailed carvings on the Temple of the Feathered Serpent.

Ruth, overlooking some of the ruins.

A bit of a lineup to get into the observatory.

The observatory was interesting. It was an underground chamber that lets in a ray of light to allow study of the movement of the sun. I'll let you read the following to get a better idea, but the Mayan's had some smart people among their population. Will the world end in 2012? Nope, that's just some stupid people among today's population!

Beautiful views in all directions.

The third ball court is situated lower down. It is one of the most preserved examples of a ball court, with the round hoops on either side of the court still intact. You can see a little beyond the ball court where there are ruins that have not yet been excavated. 

They figure there were over 20,000 people living in this city between 700 and 900 AD.

Today will be a relax day and we'll just hang around Sherman and get some cleaning and tidying up done. The driving restrictions in the greater Mexico City area mean that based on our licence plate we are not able to drive on Mondays. And even at other times, only after 11:00am. We could apply for a tourist permit to get around that, but we just don't think it's worth taking the risk because fines for breaking the rules are very high.

So we've paid for two more nights at this RV park, and tomorrow we'll head out of here.


  1. As always, great content. Some pretty smart people down there in those ages past.

  2. An interesting day for sure exploring the ruins, I assume you took a taxi home.

    1. Yep, meant to mention that! Taxi home, for 120 pesos ($9.60).

  3. Super pictures! What a great way to learn about the history of the area. We do exactly like you two. We try to figure a way around paying the highest price possible. We usually end up spending more. ~wheresweaver

  4. Have never been to those particular ruins. They look well preserved compared to what you will see in the DF area. Thanks for sharing.

  5. How interesting about the driving restrictions in Mexico City.

  6. What a wonderful way to spend the day, and you sure are getting around--- even if it's taking the longest way? LOL

    Karen and Steve
    (Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard

  7. Your post brings back fond memories we have of the 8-day Caravan tour we did of many of Mexico's ancient sites. It was some of the best times we had while in Mexico. Enjoy your journey!

  8. And here I thought the license plate based driving restrictions were limited to Quito. Thanks for taking us to the ruins ... we enjoy ancient ruins and try to visit them whenever we find ourselves near them during our travels.

  9. great trip to the ruins and excellent pictures..felt like we were there also :) thanks for sharing

  10. Great day! We have been to one Mayan site in Mexico and we really enjoyed the tour.

  11. I think you need a restful day! Wonderful report on the ruins and great photos as always!


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