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Life Love & Adventure Follow my journeys around this little blue planet as I tread wearily into unknown waters, sipping on the nectars of ancient fruit trees, grappling linguistics with foreign tongues, and bathing in exotic sensations ...

Mexican Road Trip - Part 2

MEXICO | Friday, 8 February 2008 | Views [649] | Comments [5]

Ok so the horse riding adventure into the mountain indian village didn´t turn out as planned. Montezuma´s Curse took hold of me and wouldn't let me leave the toilet for a couple of days!
Needless to say, I was a little disapointed but in the end, there were more excellent adventures around the corner. We left San Cristobal and made the 5 hour bus trip to Palenque, but first we stopped at the most beautiful cascading waterfalls I've ever seen - Agua Azul.
This is pretty close to paradise, nestled in the thick of the Mexican jungle, sparkling crystal waters flowing over multi-tiered falls into pools of white pebble stones. The day was sunny and hot and it wasn´t long before we all got into our bathers and frolicked in the cool water, finding our own natural spas in the rock niches. I'm constantly bewildered how one day you can feel at the bottom of the barrel and the next day you´re floating on cloud 9 :).
The tourists are well catered for here with several outdoors restaurants under thatched roof structures, as well as the usual string of local craft and souvenir stalls. We could have stayed there all week but the bus driver was a little impatient so we had to keep going to Palenque.

Our hotel was themed in a similar thatched roof style with big spacious bedrooms. The adjacent hotel had the pool so we all headed there for more cool water and fun in the sun. Tequila sunrises and a boys vs girls frisbee match in the water might have upset the other tourists trying to relax but we mad our own fun and ignored the scowling expressions from the Dutchees.

The next day we journeyed to the famous Palenque archaeological site to see the ruins of this city.
Only 2% of the original city has been unearthed and the rest is ´protected´ in national park with the jungle still claiming ownership of the remaining buildings. We had a local guide lead us through the site, and the hot and muggy weather started to take its toll on some of us. Palenque was ruled by Pacal who's tomb still lies in the Temple of Inscriptions, one of three temples which are aligned the same way as the three main pyramids at Giza in Egypt, ie. to the stars in Orion. There are other links between the Mayans and Egyptians as we got told later. Its Pacal's tombstone that is engraved with the picture that the infamous Erik Von Daniken claimed was of the Mayan king riding a flying machine! The palace temple was free for us to look around and a lot of the original stonework is still existing although the nearby museum holds all the treasures. It includes a unique observatory tower which leans slightly to the south to counter for its latitude north of the equator.
 There is also a 'Skull Temple' and the 'Red Temple' and the ball court similar to that at Monte Alban (I've since found out that the losers of the ball game had their hands cut off, weren't they lucky :)). But it was on top of one of the other pyramids that I made my own sacrifical offering to the gods when I left them my breakfast! I'm ashamed to say the heat and my weak stomach turned me inside out temporarily (or could it have been that damn mezcal from the night before, hehe). Anyway, I welcomed the offer to see the nearby waterfalls, which weren't as impressive as Agua Azul, but refreshing anyway. We saw monkeys in the jungle canopy as well which was a bonus :).
We ended off the day lazily by the pool or catching up on some much needed sleep, then went and had dinner with some live music being provided by some talented locals with traditional instruments.


We spent the whole following day in a bus to Merida, where I am now, and the afternoon thunderstorms have given us a tropical lightning show (complete with the tropical rains). We´ve got a fun day planned for tomorrow where we´ll be swimming in an underground cave in the jungle somewhere, so I´ll try keep you all up to date with the next installment of this fascinating country :).

Hasta luego!

Tags: On the Road

Comments

1

Hola amigo...I checked out Agua Azul and see what you mean, tis beautiful !!
I am impressed that you left an offering to PACAL hehehe now you can tell everyone you left a bit of yourself there :p

Hasta luego Elmatteo

  Leeroy Feb 8, 2008 9:02 PM

2

Hi Mat, Iam enjoying your journals so much, I often check out the place you have been to on the net, and just checked out Agua Azul, it looks amazing. Keep well and have fun Love Trudi

  Trudi Feb 8, 2008 10:52 PM

3

hey mattso...once again it sounds like you and your traveling companions are living it up...do I hear a hint of "This is where I want to live for the rest of my life" in your voice..lol....take care in paradise mon

  Chris Feb 10, 2008 2:33 AM

4

Howdy again Mate. I was wondering where you were and now it's clear....having far too much fun! :) Man, you've gone from sub-zero temps to slowly climbing warmth, right into steamy tropical weather! This trip has given you heaps of experiences, and that's just the weather :) I have images in my head of some of the movies i've seen filmed in hot tropical places. Brilliant to hear you're still having so much fun. Swimming too! (Sorry to hear about the involuntary toilet worshiping :)Agua Azul sounds and looks very very nice. Thanks for the updates on your adventures. Keep'em coming :)

All the best mate.

S.

  Steve Watson Feb 11, 2008 10:43 AM

5

Hi Matt, Can't wait till the next instalment. Love the photos . that 'mezcal' sounds powerful stuff!!!!Just what sort of a mixture is that, I wonder??? Keep enjoying yourself and stay safe.
love Barb xx

  barb grant Feb 12, 2008 3:56 PM

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