Less famous than the soaring pyramids of Tikal, Yaxha is a beautiful nearby site far off the normal tourist trail.
Yaxha too is an ancient Maya site, the ruins located in a spectacular setting on the shores of a lake. Sunsets are unforgettable at Yaxha as the sun slowly sets behind the tops of the ancient buildings before seemingly dipping into the lake.
Some folks may remember that season 11 of the reality show Survivor was was filmed on sight in Yaxha. The contestants lived on a small island named Topoxte which can be visited by boat from Yaxha.
The sunset tour to Yaxha departs every afternoon at 12:30 PM and arrives around 2:00 PM. The price of 160 quetzals includes an experienced local guide who speaks English who will show you around the site. The tour concludes at the summit of the highest pyramid to watch a spectacular sunset. The shuttle back to Flores leaves Yaxha at 7:00 PM and takes about 90 minutes.
Note: There is an 80 quetzal entrance fee to enter Yaxha and this is NOT included in the price of the tour.
If you want to visit Yaxha without a guide, the price for transportation to and from Yaxha is 110 quetzals.
A few useful tips for visiting Yaxha:
- Consider an overnight stay. There are lovely thatched-roof huts on the lake shore where you can pitch a tent or hang up a hammock. For more comfortable accommodations, there is an eco-hotel a short distance away called El Sombrero.
- Be sure to bring plenty of drinking water.
- Wear comfortable shoes, not flimsy flip-flops or sandals.
- Don’t forget your bug spray!
- Food isn’t sold at Yaxha so bring your own. We highly recommend ordering one of our lunchboxes, available in both omnivore and vegetarian varieties.
- Bring a flashlight for the trip back after watching the sunset.
- Take advantage of the unique environment and spend a moment in quiet reflection at the top of the temple. Remember, you are entering a space which has been sacred to humans for thousands of years.