I've written about Toniná several times as it's one of my favorite Mayan ruins, but recent visits to Chinkultic and Tenam Puente are rivaling it for favorite.
|View from the tallest temple in Tenam Puente|
So these cities survived the collapse and lasted another 300 years, until finally being abandoned in 1200AD.
Chinkultic is built up the side of a mountain giving it a commanding view of the valley and lakes. It can be seen from the highway, glistening edifices marching up the side of a green mountain. It is the only city in Chiapas to have a cenote, a sinkhole lake fed by underground springs. Cenotes were used as receptacles for sacrificial victims, some of whom where tossed in already dead, and some still alive. Several hundred feet below the highest temple, the cenote's water would have been a hard landing and probably fatal to anyone falling in. Archeologists have found some personal artifacts at the bottom of the cenote including jade jewelry.
|Well proportioned pyramid in|
Neither of these sites have a museum. There is only a room at the office with posters and information in Spanish mostly, though Tenam Puente had much more English signage. Both sites had stelae describing the feats and accomplishments of the elite rulers, and both have yielded well preserved carved stone artifacts, now in the national museum in Mexico City.
Tenam Puente is about 8 kilometers from Comitán, while Chinkultic is about an hour's drive away, and part of the Lagunas Montebello National Park. There wasn't much in the information about the two sites relationship with each other. I would guess they are about 50-60 kilometers apart, probably far enough in the days before roads and beasts of burden to remain relatively friendly.
|Youngest three temples, Tenam Puente|
|The Cenote at Chinkultic|
|Sacrificing platform, Chinkultic|
|Highest pyramid, Chinkultic|
|View down into the mostly unexcavated area, |
from the top of Chinkultic