One Big City... Ancient Mayan Style

Trip Start May 01, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Mexico  ,
Sunday, May 14, 2006

The road leaving San Cristóbal is long and winding. It snakes downward from the city (which sits at over 7000 feet elevation) around tall peaks and through misty valleys, slowly descending into the lowlands of the Chiapas state. The geography changes slowly - arid alpine forests become wet, rolling hills, while the hills eventually give way to the massive, lush density that is the jungle of Mexico´s Yucatán Peninsula.

My next destination is dead center, right in the middle of this humid, steamy place. It´s a town called Palenque - a small, tattered little joint of no real consequence... except for the vast, ancient Mayan ruins, called by the same name, that sit just a mile or so outside town.

I managed to get to the Palenque ruins just after the opening hour of 8:00am. I had read that this site was great, one of the best anywhere in the Mayan world, and decided I would need to arrive early to beat the sandals-with-socks, khaki-short-wearing crowd that would no doubt pour in on droves of tour busses.

I did indeed beat the crowd, and what can I say... this place was incredible! The cool, early-morning mist still lingered over the tops of the structures, accompanied in the background by the soundtrack of jungle creatures and nearby flowing streams.

The pictures speak for themselves. But I must say that after sitting for a while and gazing at the ruins, one can really imagine this vast city at its peak, teaming with life, thousands of years ago.

Undoubtedly an amazing piece of ancient history.
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johnb22 on

Re: Great Pics Man!
Blue Phantom: The Lance Burton of the Inca Trail!

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