Tropical Mayans and Star Wars

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Flag of Guatemala  ,
Friday, August 21, 2009

Our main reason for coming to Central America was to become evn more culturally enriched and check out another ancient culture... the Mayans.

What better place to start but Tikal. the most significant Mayan ruin in Guatemala and for you Star Wars freaks out there.. the setting for a scene in Star Wars: A New Hope.

Another nightmare bus journey.. the normal waiting in 35 degree heat until they fill the bus with people, chickens, bags of rice and tourists.... 2 hrs later and we are ready to leave... Arrive at our destination town Flores, nice pretty town 30km from Tikal...

Then an early start following morning to Tikal which is set in the middle of a tropical rainforest. This was not a normal park... this thing was vast with Mayan temples scattered all round the place. Well they believe up to 90,000 Mayans lived here so hence the vastness.

We spent 5 hours sweating in the jungle trying to find these temples, but it was worth every second, amazing scenery and great to cast yourself back in time and imagine you are part of the powerful kingdom of the Mayans. Just inside the entrance was a gigantic Kapak tree.. the sacred tree of the Maya...(again Richard we thought it would look great in your garden). The highlight was the climb to see the 4th temple which was the scene for star wars and the main square which contained 2 mind blowing temples one of which was 150ft high.

That evening we bumped into most of our tour group from Semuc Champey so a night was spent drinking 50 cent beers re hydrating ourselves after our jungle trek... for some reason we didnt feel so re hydrated the following morning... oh well a good excuse to spend another night in Flores watching the sun set over the lake before we hit Belize.... oh its a tough life after all....
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