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All about Izamal in Yucatán in Mexico

Updated: April 6, 2024

Main Category: Day Trips


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Author: Tobias

Izamal is s a historically important small town and one of the most beautiful places on the Yucatán Peninsula. Izamal is about 70km away from Mérida. The journey by car takes about 55min from the city center of Mérida and the place is most of the time bustling.


Day Trips


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Izamal, Yucatán, Mexiko







70km from Mérida

Travel Time:

55min from Mérida


No entry fee

Price Level:



700 BC

Google Rating:

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Opening Hours:


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Izamal (Mayathan: "Pace of the Iguanas") is a historically important small town and one of the most beautiful places (and of course a popular tourist destination) on the Yucatán Peninsula.

Izamal is also called the "Yellow City" ("Ciudad Amarilla"), because in the old town every house is painted in a sunny yellow. The history of the city dates back to the Middle Preclassic (700 - 300 BC).

The most important sight is the monastery of San Antonio de Padua. After the Spanish conquest, the monastery was built on the ruins of a former Maya temple.

The huge atrium is one of the largest in the world. Pope Johannes Paul II visited the place and in his honor a statue of him was erected in the monastery, which can also be visited.

Mayan pyramids

Several Mayan pyramids have been preserved and the special thing is that they are all located in the area of the city. The largest pyramid (Kinich Kak Moo) of Izamal has a side length of 200m and a height of 36m.

In fact, Kinich Kak Moo is the largest pyramid (by surface area) in the Yucatan. You can reach the pyramid on foot from downtown Izamal Calle (27 x 28 and 26). It is allowed to climb the pyramid and so you have a great overview over Izamal.

The other pyramids are:

  • Pirámide de Itzamatul (Calle 26, No. 296)

  • Piramid El Conejo ("Tu'Ul") (Calle 22 and between Calle 31 and 33)

  • Pirámide Habuk (Calle 28 and between Calle 35 and 37)

  • Pirámide Kabul (Calle 31 and between Calle 30 and 32)

While the entrance fees of many excavation sites have risen sharply in recent years, all pyramids in Izamal can be explored for free.

The world of archaeology

Some interesting figures about Mayan archaeological sites on the Yucatan Peninsula:

Figures about Mayan archaeological sites
Figures about Mayan archaeological sites

Pueblos Mágicos

Izamal is one of the places designated by Mexico 2002 as "Pueblos Mágicos".

The award has been granted by SECTUR (Secretariat of Tourism in Mexico) since 2001 for unique folklore, a rich history or stunning natural beauty. On the Yucatán Peninsula, there are fourteen places that can call themselves "Pueblo Mágico".

The 14 Pueblos Magicós on the Yucatán Peninsula are (as of 2024):

How do you get to Izamal from Mérida?

The easiest way is by car. If you want to go by bus: In Mérida, tour buses from Oriente go to Izamal several times a day. The buses start at the Noreste Terminal and take about 90 minutes. Another option are the minibuses of Autobuses Centro. The station is on Calle 65 between Calle 46 and Calle 48.


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Best Mérida Day Trips

If you would like to explore the Yucatan Peninsula and Mérida with a guided tour, there are wonderful experiences from Viator. We have selected the three best tours for you.

You save time and nerves, get all the insider tips you need from an expert tour guide and can join up with others if you wish. And it's also safer to travel in a group.

Chichen Itza, Private Cenote, Food Experience & the magic Izamal

My Top Recommendation (likely to sell out)

Chichen Itza, Private Cenote, Food Experience & the magic Izamal

The very best Chichén Itzá tour and free cancellation. It starts from US-$97

average rating is 5 out of 5
Best Mérida Day Trips

Another very special experience

Tour to Cenote of Santa Barbara and Acanceh area from Merida

This! Super beautiful cenotes! You have free cancellation. It starts from US-$114

average rating is 5 out of 5
Best Mérida Day Trips

Not either/or, but also!

Celestun Beach Mangrove Boat Ride from Merida

One more must-have. You also have free cancellation. It starts from US-$122

average rating is 4.5 out of 5
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Viator Travel Promotions

Our partner and market leader, Viator, offers a wide range of exciting Thing to do in Mérida and on the Yucatán Peninsula.


Take advantage of special offers, save up to 20% and enjoy maximum flexibility with free cancelations. The most popular tours are booked up quickly, so don't miss out.

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