Museo Arqueológico de Palenque
After you see the ruins, be sure to leave time to visit Palenque’s museum, Museo Arqueológico de Palenque (10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Tues.–Sun.), which contains a truly incredible collection of stucco and stone artifacts found at Palenque, including ornate incense burners and perfectly preserved relief carvings and hieroglyphic panels, with excellent explanations in both Spanish and English.
The Museo Arqueológico de Palenque is not a huge museum—an hour should suffice—but absolutely worth visiting, and for many people a highlight of their visit to Palenque.
A new exhibit called “The Tomb of Pakal” includes a life-size reproduction of the sarcophagus and elaborately carved lid, installed in an exact replica of the crypt made of Plexiglas so you can see through to appreciate its unique design. (It’s more effective than it sounds.)
Professionally produced videos and wall displays describe the tomb’s discovery and explain the symbols and imagery found within. Two gift shops at Palenque’s museum have reasonably good selections of books and locally produced artesanía.
Admission to the Museo Arqueológico de Palenque is included with admission to the ruins—be sure to hang on to your ticket! Also note that although the ruins are open daily, the museum is closed on Monday.
© Liza Prado and Gary Chandler from Moon Chiapas, 1st Edition