20:45 - 87.3Koordinaten: 20 ° 27 '0 "N, 87 ° 18' 0 " W

Xel Ha is an archaeological site of the Maya in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo on the east side of the Yucatán Peninsula on the Caribbean coast.


The ruins of Xel Há located about 15 km northeast of Tulum right on the Carretera 307, the road that connects the tourist centers Cancun and Playa del Carmen in the north and the state capital of Chetumal on the border with Belize. Xel Ha is one of the newly founded in 2008 Municipio Tulum.

The prehispanic settlement consists of two sections, one about 1 km located in the country village with residential and religious buildings and port facilities on the coast. The two parts were connected by a Sacbé.


In Xel Há, there were probably two periods in which the city had greater significance. In between was a period of stagnation, characterized by the sharp drop in construction activity.

In the period 100-600 AD, Xel Há developed for well- most populous settlement of the surrounding coastline. From this period palatial buildings have survived, such as the house of birds. Stylistic features suggest a connection to Central Mexico and especially Teotihuacan.

Probably Xel Há stood as a port and local coastal center with major domestic cities, in particular the neighboring Cobá in close relationship. Various researchers assume that Xel Há acted together with Xcaret, Tancah and Muyil as ports for Coba, over which ran a flourishing trade with the more southerly cities in what is now Belize and up to Honduras. Between Xel Ha and Coba there should have been a Sacbé.

From about 1200 AD Xel Há developed as part of the dwindling influence of Cobá again into a prosperous port and trading point. Xel Ha was part of the coastal trade network that the Caribbean coast retreated with a large number of locations along the region and transported economically. This shows the construction of numerous residential and religious buildings as well as a wall between the coastal buildings and port facilities. This wall was similar to Xcaret, most likely a wall of protection against attacks from the sea. Some researchers see this as a feature of uncertain life circumstances that existed at that time in the Caribbean coast region.

After the arrival of the Spaniards on this coast, the place gradually depopulated. The inhabitants took in the southern areas of the Yucatán Peninsula, which were not conquered by the Spaniards, refuge. Middle of the 16th century was to leave the place.

In the 1980s, opened in Xel Há an eponymous water park, which is now very popular with tourists. Embedded here is in a nature reserve, the world 's largest natural aquarium. It offered driving numerous activities such as snorkeling, scuba diving, dolphin swim or kayak.