Maya Ruins > Santa Rosa Xtampak

Santa Rosa Xtampak is located 137 kilometers from Campeche City, in Hopelchén municipality. Close to kilometer 79 driving on the federal highway 261, there is a detour to a paved road of 32 kilometer that leads directly to the site. It is well marked.

Entry fee: 38 pesos

Time needed to visit: Allow about 1 1/2 hours

Hours: 8:00 am- 5:00 PM

In Spring and Summer time, wear light clothes because the temperature is over 30° C. During June, July and August, wear mosquito repellent and suitable clothes for rainy weather.

Map to Campeche and Santa Rosa Xtampak


temple santa rosa xtampak
Xtampak is a Maya word means "old or ancient walls". It is a very old site, having been occupied during the Late Preclassic (BC.300-250). During the 200-year period from AD 600 to 800, in the Late Classic period, Santa Rosa Xtampak was the regional capital in the Mayan area. The site is a little out of the way, but is worth it due to the palace located in the heart of this ancient city. Santa Rosa Xtampak is considere as the largest and most important pre-hispanic city in the Chenes region. At one time it was a regional Mayan capital.
The Palace is a three level building with 27 rooms on the fist level, 12 on the second one and 5 on the third one, reaching a total of 44. It has got four external stairways, two of them are located on the west side of the structure and lead to the second level. When we visited Santa Rosa Xtampak, we were the first visitors that had been there in days. The caretaker took us around the site and pointed out some tunnels and stairs that we could climb The other two stairways are non-practical and link the second and third levels. In addition, this building has got two internal stairways, unique in the area, which communicate the three levels. The eastern side seems to have three pyramid-temples with a three-level building on its rear. The central staircase on the east side leads to the entrance of a mud-wall hallway on the third level and it was once sorrounded by a great zoo-morph mask. The Serpent's Mouth Edifice, with a typical Chenes facade, has some decorative elements from Puuc architecture such as the series of three tiny drums located on the highest part of the lateral lodgings. Its main facade consists of an integral zoo-morph porch, representing the Monster of the Earth nabbing over its bended legs, which can be appreciated next to the ear rings, and with an extremely opened mouth which happens to be the entrance to the edifice.

Edifice 24

entrance to temple


indiana jones tunnel

The site, which is the greatest in size in the Chenes region, was built over a natural elevation by leveling and flattening its peak. Extending on a surface of aproximately 9 square kilometers, we can appreciate a great amount of edifices in the area, some of them of great size prevailing the Chenes architecture, although there are also some structures with Puuc influence, besides disperse chultunes all over the establishment. The heart of this ancient city is confomed by a series of patios and plazas intercommunicated with each other and some other groups relatively isolated. A broad causeway with an altar close to its East End, links the Palace's Plaza with a pyramidal base of the Northeast Group. Santa Rosa Xtampak is one of the few sites in the region with sculpted and plain stelae.

The Red House and its annex, form a narrow 14 meters long and almost one meter wide hallway that constituted some kind of a side street. These three lodging edifices, in conjunctive, are arranged to form the siohuette of a letter "L". The district or quarter is a 2,300 square meter area limited by two edifices on its four ends. Structure North, South and West had one single row of lodgings and broad stairways in both ends of each edifice. The East Structure had two parallel rows of lodgings. The Southeast quadrangle has three main constructions (the South one, West and East) linked on its corners, while the North one leaves an open space on its east side, which once served as the access to the architectonic conjunctive. Another entrance is located on the center of the West edifice and consists of some kind of vaulted porch. The North, East and South edifices once had central stairways which allowed the access to the higher level of the buildings from the inside of the quadrangle. The West Structure has got multiple entrances formed by stone wall columns covered with finely carved ashlars. Almost at the center of the quadrangle there is a small platform in a quarangular shape, which was possibly an altar.
east structure santa rosa xtampak

You will definitely feel like Indiana Jones exploring this site. Not only will you be alone, but you will find lots of hidden treasures, tunnels and mysterious places.

Last updated: June 21, 2011

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