Chichen Itza

El Castillo


Looking Head On

Image description

This is a view of El Castillo on a sunny day, which demonstrates the symmetry of this structure.

It shows several uniquely Mayan attributes that went into the construction:

  • It reveals the nine tiers, split by the stairway to give 18 smaller tier sections, the same as the number of months in the Mayan calendar.
  • It shows the 26 rectangular panels on either side of the stairway (about three or four per tier). Adding to 52 panels, the same as the number of years in a Mayan cycle.
  • Though not feasible to show here, there are 91 steps on each of the four stairways leading up to the top of the structure with a common step at the top to all four sides, leading to a total of 365 steps--same as the number of days in a year.
  • An overhead view of the structure shows that it is skewed exactly 18 degrees, same as the number of months in the calendar.

These structural points are discussed in greater detail here.

-- Chris Reeves