Mayan Archaeology > Yucatan > Yucatan
The three flint sun-stones
Oxkintok, which means “Three-day flint” or “Three flint sun-stones” in Mayan, has one of the longest Mayan site occupation periods, from 300 B.C. to 1000 A.D. Unlike the rest of the Puuc cities, it had its peak during the early Classic period (300-500 A.D.) when most of the monumental buildings were constructed. The architecture displays a dominance of pyramid bases over roofed spaces, which is a style associated with Petén+. This city is also known as Maxacan or Tzat Tun Tzat.
It is characterized by the antiquity of its hieroglyphic inscriptions (475 and 859 A.D.), by the guardians on the anthropomorphic stone columns, and above all, by the uniqueness of its early buildings.
Oxkintok’s best known building is the Labyrinth or Tza Tun Tzat, formed by three superimposed levels. From the moment you enter its only door, a childish fear of getting lost comes over you. In ancient Oxkintok, there is also a secret gateway to Xibalbá, the underworld.
There is a mortuary chamber at the end of its intricate hallways and levels, which holds the remains of one of the great lords of Oxkintok.
The men of stone in Oxkintok, located in the east end, are obese figures, dressed in mesh vests, zoomorphic chest pieces and clothing decorated with intertwined rope.
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To get to Campeche from Mérida, take the southwest exit of the city towards Federal Highway 180 Mérida-Calkini. Drive for 50 kilometers on the road to the town of Maxcanu. Before reaching Maxcanu, there is a left turn that leads to the archaeological zone of Oxkintok.