Tenam Puente

Mayan Archaeology > Chiapas > Chiapas

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The best demonstration of the overlap between the Classic and Postclassic eras.

The archaeological zone of Tenam Puente was built in the Classic period (300 to 600 A.D.) although its peak occurred in the late Classic period (600-900 A.D.). It was a center of power in the western strip of high lands in the Mayan world, and it seems to have survived to around 1200 A.D., before it was abandoned for reasons that are still unclear.

A visit to the site is quite impressive due to its size and the amount of buildings there.

` It is built on a strategic position, on the route that links the Highlands of Chiapas and Guatemala with the Mayan Lowlands, over a mountain that dominates the Comiteca plain, which extends all the way to the Montebello Lakes.

The core zone is composed of 60 structures distributed over an area of 30 hectares. Most of these buildings, and the most important, are located inside what has been named The Acropolis. To construct it, it was necessary to level the hills with high and long terraces built on different levels which, as they ascend, their extension and height are reduced.

Open and closed plazas, squares and courtyards were built over these platforms.

The most interesting aspect of these constructions is the coating of cut and polished calcareous stone pieces that fit perfectly without the use of any adhesive.

Building 7 is one of the most interesting constructions, it is 17 meters high, and consists of various bodies and two small ball courts that restricted access to the upper levels.

Hours
Monday through Sunday from 8:00 to 17:00
Rates
35 pesos
How to arrive

From Tuxtla Gutiérrez, the state capital of Chiapas, take highway 190 which leads to the municipality of Comitán de Domínguez. Once in Comitán, take the exit leading south of the city and you’ll find the sign pointing towards the archaeological zone of Tenam Puente.

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Map and address

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The site is located 13 kilometers southeast of the city of Comitán, close to the town of Francisco Sarabia.