Yagul is an archaeological site in Mexico’s Oaxaca region inhabited by the Pre-Columbian civilisation of the Zapotecs, although the exact time of their first occupation of this area is unknown (sometime between 500 and 100 BC). Yagul was still in use at the time of the Spanish Conquest.
Somewhat dwarfed by the grandeur of nearby Monte Alban, Yagul is smaller and has undergone less excavation than its famous counterpart yet it does have a series of interesting monuments. Amongst other things, Yagul has a ball court, similar to the one seen at Monte Alban and at other Zapotec sites and a large labyrinth of a palace, thought to have been built for its leaders.
It is clear from the remaining parts of its fortress wall that Yagul was heavily defended, helped by its position atop a hill. Lower down the hill, visitors can see what was once its central plaza, surrounded by several palaces and temples. Also in this section is a site known as the Triple Tomb or “Tumba Triple”, one of many tombs found in Yagul. Visitors can ask to view the Triple Tomb, as long as escorted by one of the guards.
Yagul is often overlooked by tourists, but is worth seeing if only for the peaceful nature of its setting which makes viewing its sites a calmer experience than many in the region.