Tajin is a fascinating pre-Columbian archaeological site located in the southern state of Veracruz, Mexico. It is recognized as a UNESCO world heritage site and its name means “City of Thunder”. The site is littered with ancient structures but the most remarkable monument at El Tajin is the Piramide de los Nichos (Pyramid of Niches). It stands 60 feet high and has seven levels to it. It is believed to have been built sometime between the 4th and 9th century. The purpose on why this pyramid was built remains a mystery. I have personally been to Tajin several times during my childhood back in the 90’s. I loved going there because to me it was an adventure. My whole family and I would make the four hour drive (from Tamaulipas, Mexico) during the spring break season.
Pyramid Structures – Tajin
The best attractions to see for me were always the pyramids and “los voladores de Papantla” (aka Dance of the Flyers). These were highly skilled acrobatic performers who did amazing stunts in the sky. They would climb a pole 150 feet high and then slowly descend by circling down the pole with no safety harnesses attached to them! It was a spectacular sight to see.
Climbing some of the nearby pyramids was another adventurous and fun thing to do. Have you ever climbed a pyramid? The experience is surreal and it provided us with a breathtaking view of the entire ancient complex. Sadly, climbing the pyramids today are now strictly prohibited. During lunch time my family and I would then head on over to one of the nearby local restaurants to indulge in some delicious Mexican food. Once our appetites were satiated, I would then purchase little souvenirs for memories such as little handmade drums and flutes.
After a whole day of family fun exploring Tajin we would then make the long journey back home in the evening time. Although we were tired we were always very happy about the adventure we experienced together as a family. The memories of Tajin is something I hold very close to my heart and it was an experience that I will forever cherish. Today, Tajin is a very popular place to visit. It receives thousands of tourists each year and especially during the Cumbre Tajin Festival – a celebration of Pre- Hispanic identity and heritage that showcases both national and international musicians and entertainers.
I highly recommend that everyone visits this incredible ancient site and discover the history of my ancient Mexican culture because you won’t regret it!
~ Paola Parissi is a member of the ancient destinations team.