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An Overview Of the Mayan Temples Of Cozumel

By Tom Seest

What Are the Mayan Temples Of Cozumel?

At TopCozumelNews, we help people traveling to Cozumel plan their trips and activities using information collected on our trips to the beautiful island.

Cozumel offers numerous Mayan temples to visitors during their vacation, and there are various relics scattered throughout its jungle.
San Gervasio and El Cedral are two of the island’s major ruins, which you can explore independently or take a guided tour with a certified guide.

What Are the Mayan Temples Of Cozumel?

Is El Caracol a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

Cozumel boasts many fascinating and well-preserved Mayan ruins that you can visit on an eco-tour. Many are part of Punta Sur Ecological Park, which you can access with either sightseeing tours or buggy and Jeep tours.
El Caracol, located within Punta Sur Ecological Park, is an intriguing Mayan ruin site dating from the Post Classic period (950-1539 AD). Also referred to as Tumba del Caracol or “snail temple,” El Caracol offers visitors an interesting insight into Mayan history.
One pillar in this building’s center features the symbol of Ix Chel, goddess of moon and sexuality for Mayans who believe she had connections to the sun, water, and fertility.
One of the standout features of this structure is its spiral staircase within its tower, making it an enjoyable stop on any Cozumel sightseeing tour and providing an opportunity to gain greater insight into its history.
Museo de Cozumel is another highly acclaimed tourist attraction in Cozumel and an ideal way to gain an overview of both its culture and natural history. Featuring various galleries that cover the natural and human histories of Cozumel, the museum provides visitors with an opportunity to gain more information.
The museum offers visitors a chance to see some of the island’s animals such as crocodiles and exotic birds, while also learning more about its history and archaeological sites found here.
El Caracol is an impressive Mayan ruin located within Punta Sur Ecological Park that was constructed during the Post Classic period – just one of many amazing and well-kept ruins you can find across this island! Its construction dates back some 2,100 years!
These structures can be found along the dirt road leading to Celarain Lighthouse within Punta Sur Ecological Park. Though you will need to traverse a short stretch of dirt road before arriving at this destination site, the effort will more than pay off!
This site was occupied from approximately 600 BCE until the arrival of Mayans in the 4th century CE when they established one of their largest settlements on the island using an ancient road network that connected homes and traded goods.
Is El Caracol a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

Is El Cedral a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

Cozumel is a beloved tourist spot, yet its shores also contain lesser-known Mayan temples that deserve your consideration. Though these relics might not boast as impressive historical and cultural significance as some other Mexican ruins, these Mayan sites still deserve your consideration due to their history and culture-richness.
San Gervasio, located on the island’s northern half, was revered as a sacred site by Mayans for worshipping Ixchel as their goddess of fertility and love.
Although situated in an isolated spot, this temple served as the heart of a Mayan community for many years. Now one of the island’s premier archaeological sites, it houses numerous structures from this ancient civilization’s period of time.
Not just a tourist destination, this site also serves as a focal point for locals. The temple dedicated to Ix Chel – a Mayan goddess associated with fertility and love – became a favorite spot where residents came together in prayer for good health.
After the Spanish invasion of Mexico in 1519, some inhabitants from Cozumel fled the mainland to avoid slavery and were taken in by Casimiro Cardenas, who found sanctuary in a church where he found solace from being killed by Mayans. He pledged that each year, a celebration would take place on Cozumel to remember and commemorate it.
El Cedral, located on Cozumel’s southern tip, boasts an intriguing history dating back to 800. Once considered the largest community on the island, El Cedral once housed hundreds of inhabitants who once called this settlement home.
Now a smaller town, this charming locale still attracts many visitors and hosts an interesting tradition held annually in April.
The Festival of Santa Cruz and El Cedral Fair is an amazing five-day event featuring fairground rides, beer gardens, dancing performances, bullfights, and much more! Experience Cozumel’s rich Mayan culture without needing to travel far!
Is El Cedral a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

Is San Gervasio a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

Cozumel offers more than beaches and shops; take time to explore its ancient Mayan ruins for a fascinating glimpse into Mexico’s culture.
San Gervasio Ruins are easily accessible and conveniently situated on an island, making for a quick cruise shore excursion or hotel side trip to this small but breathtaking site.
San Gervasio once served as a major religious center for Mayans living on Cozumel, as women would make pilgrimages there to pay their respects to Ixchel, goddess of fertility.
Today, Chichen Itza is a small archaeological zone tucked into the dense jungle that features numerous temples and statues. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it provides one of the best ways to learn more about Mayan history.
Travelers can access the ruins by taxi or booking a tour through Cozumel Tours, or they can walk themselves. Some travelers have found the entrance fee to be steep; however, most visitors find the experience worth their while.
San Gervasio boasts several temples to explore, such as the Temple of the Hands Elite Residence. This thatched building was home to the halach uinic, or high priest, and features several small red hand prints painted onto its interior walls. Furthermore, this was home for almehenoob rulers or supreme rulers.
San Gervasio also boasts an ancient ball court and palace, both still present despite their state of disrepair. There’s plenty to explore here!
San Gervasio Ruins are an ideal way to gain more insight into Mayan culture and history on Cozumel. Conveniently located just a short drive away from San Miguel de Cozumel, you can easily make this part of your vacation itinerary!
Is San Gervasio a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

Is Ix Chel a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

Ix Chel is a female Mayan goddess associated with water, childbirth, weaving, and healing. She is generally considered benevolent due to her role in birth and rebirth ceremonies; however, she can also be seen as malevolent due to being associated with flooding and hurricanes.
Ix Chel is one of the main Maya goddesses, traditionally depicted as both an elegant young, sensual woman and an ageless elder. However, both these aspects were recognized. She could also take other forms.
According to legend, Ix Chel was a beautiful woman who loved the Sun God very much. But one day, he became jealous and attempted to kill her with lightning; but instead, she managed to escape and run underground, hiding from him in caves.
She later returned as a jaguar, helping women in need. This figure can be found throughout Mayan mythology and serves as an important goddess within Mayan culture.
Ancient Maya believed Ix Chel had the power to control rain and floods using her upside-down water vessel carried in her hand. They believed this vessel could send torrents of water that could both cleanse and devastate land, thus helping prepare it for renewal.
Ix Chel was known to wear a serpent crown and crossed bones on her skirt, often holding onto an earthen vessel and sometimes possessing clawed hands and feet.
Thinks may also relate to her connection to water as being at its center, with her spinning of a spindle being seen as a universal centering device. She was central in the Mayan calendar as well as fertility figures.
Ix Chel is an extremely potent goddess in SMITE, possessing several special abilities that make her extremely effective in battle. One such ability is her Gleaming Blast ability, which deals damage while also penetrating minions.
Threads of Light is another useful ability of hers, sending out strands of light which, after an instantaneous delay, illuminate and deal damage while simultaneously blinding enemies.
Is Ix Chel a Mayan Temple on Cozumel?

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