One of the most important Mayan cities at Quintana Roo
A unique journey through the jungle
The Mayan culture is an outstanding prehispanic civilization which ruled the lands from Honduras, Belize and Guatemala to the rainforest of southeast Mexico. All their astronomical and mathematical knowledge will never stop amazing the travelers who step in the Mayan world. Also, their architecture and social organization were impressive, raising big cities taking advantage of every single element found in nature.
By going through Quintana Roo state you will find one of the main trade centers and inhabited areas of the Mayan culture splendor. At Coba, you will get to know how the daily life of the inhabitants of one of the most influential cultures in history was.
1.- Stirred water or plentiful water are possible meanings for the word Coba.
It is located 25 miles to the east of Tulum. With an estimated extension of 43 square miles and about 55 thousand inhabitants in its glory days.
2.- A big city surrounded by a vast jungle and lagoons.
One of the main reasons Coba developed was that it has a very good location. Five lagoons and numerous sinkholes, or cenotes surrounded the city. Macanxoc lagoon is the largest one. An important variety of plant life and animals helped to the needs of the city.
3.- Coba has 45 Sabces.
A Sacbe is a road or path, usually made with stones and white dust. These organized roads connected the city and improved the commerce with other Mayan villages. The largest known sacbe measures 62 miles connecting Coba with Yaxuna village.
4.- The Ancestral stones tell us important events about the novelty and wise men.
Steles are big carved stones where the priests or Mayan scientists wrote events of the nobilty or main astronomical happenings. In one of the steles, known as Estela 1, the date December 12th, 2012 is written, this date was supposed to represent the beginning of a new era.
5.- Crossing roads at Xaibe.
This building and its construction style are not common among this Mayan site, made by five rounded stone sections. It has the name of Observatory despite scientists haven’t found proves of the real use of the building.
6.- The city is divided into four groups.
Nowadays you can visit different zones following the sacbes around the city: Coba, Macanxoc, D Group and Nohoch Mul. The last one is about 1.2 miles away from the others. Keep reading to find the best way to explore them.
7.- Nohoch Mul, the top of the Mayan jungle at Yucatan Peninsula.
This pyramid is 138 feet tall. To get to the top and admire the landscape is a real pleasure for all the travelers. You will have to climb only 120 steps to find its superior temple dedicated to the descending god.
8.- The best way to go all over the Mayan world.
Because of the long distances between the groups and buildings around the site, a very good choice is to do it riding a bicycle. It is perfect to enjoy the roads among the nature and admiring the jungle.
9.- Coba has two ball game courts.
It is well known that the Mayan ball game had a powerful meaning in mesoamerican cultures. Coba is no exception because inside the site you can find two different sized courts very well conserved, they still have their goal rings, walls, and even inscriptions with details of the sacred events around this game.
The ball game is one of the most incredible and amazing contributions of this culture. Juego de pelota for beginners: Mayan ballgame
10.- Coba was completely abandoned when the Spanish arrived.
You can´t find a lot of information about the abandonment of the city. Theories may lead us to believe that wars with neighboring villages and the loss of political relevance may be the main reasons. But it remained as a symbolic and religious site of matter.
These are only a few facts you can discover by visiting this enigmatic place. The Mayan culture has left us an impressive legacy and knowledge that year by year surprise us with new studies and important discoveries.
Have you visited any other Mayan archeological sites? Share your travel with us.