Archaeologists from the Mexican Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) excavating in the Great Plaza at Chichen Itza recently made a fascinating discovery. They found a building between El Castillo Pyramid and the Temple of the Warriors that is over 1,000 years old and predates El Castillo by at least a century, according to Rafael Cobos, the archaeologist in charge of the dig. To date, his team has excavated 12 meters of the building, one of the corners, a cornice and what is probably the southeast wall. The architectural style resembles that of the Temple of Venus and the stucco-covered floor has five different levels, a building technique to prevent water from accumulating in the courtyards and channeling it towards the north and east instead.

Cobos noted that the building had been buried by the ancient inhabitants of the city, thus preserving it. This was common practice among the Maya who often built new temples on top of monuments erected by their ancestors because they believed that it concentrated divine energy and power.
Experts are optimistic that this new find will reveal more about urban planning and social classes in this great city. Another dig is in progress at Structure 2D6, a courtyard and gallery to the north of the Temple of the Warriors and archaeologists are also restoring the Great Wall which once enclosed the sacred heart of Chichen Itza.

This recent discovery is a powerful reminder that this incredible Mayan metropolis is still revealing its secrets. Why not plan a visit to Chichen Itza during your next trip? Thomas More Travel offers a variety of tour options to this UNESCO World Heritage Site, which was declared one of the Seven New Wonders of the World in a 2007 poll. Contact