Of all the Maya ruins, none exude the royal, palatial feel like Palenque. Perched in the hills with broad sweeping views down into the gulf plain below, one can sense the power the rulers must have felt at this location. The architecture and spatial arrangement of buildings are in harmony with the natural terrain. The structures have detailed stucco depictions of the elite and their gods. All of these factors combined with the howler monkeys and rainforest overgrowth make for a truely magical experience; especially if you get there right when they open before the tour buses and midday heat arrive.