Further back than 3000 years, a highly sophisticated civilization was evolving.
The Mayans lived in what is now Guatemala, Belize and the Honduras, their culture taking shape in that time span.
The Yucatan today is a wide and diverse landscape, matched in its diversity by the prolific flora and fauna, some of which are unable to be viewed anywhere else on earth today.
The bird life particularly is abundant, and includes toucans, macaws, parrots, hummingbirds that can’t be found elsewhere on the continent and the peninsula’s lowland rain forests (Chiapas, Campeche and Quintana Roo) are also home to wildlife that is as exotic as it is beautiful.
You will view ocelots, whitetail deer, anteaters, peccaries, howler monkeys, spider monkeys and margays, as well as the jaguar, the largest of wildcats in the Americas.
A bit further away are the upland cloud forests, as beautiful as the name, where you will find the many hued guacamayas as well as the quetzal, one of the most elusive of birds, deep emerald in color, with feathers that trail a foot behind it, which was considered to be sacred by the Mayans who civilized the area.
The Yucatan coast also affords you a wealth of wildlife, including the rare manatee, and the alligator, resting side by side in coastal lagoons.
Contoy Island, home to the Wildlife Reserve of Contoy, is the home and nesting area for
thousands of species of migratory birds.
The Yucatan offers, even in the underwater world, a rich diversity in creatures, bringing marlin, snapper, grouper and shrimp, as well as octupus and sailfish into your view, while the beaches that line it offer you the chance to see the sea turtles, which are nesting there during the summer months on the Yucatan.
During the height of their reign and amazing development, the Mayan Indians built incredible temples, and extraordinary ceremonial places, which have been for the most part, engulfed by the rain forests growth, leaving behind some of the most important archeological sites on the planet today, which can also be found in the Yucatan region.
Palenque and Bonampak (Chiapas); La Venta and Comacalco (Tabasco); Edzna, Chicanna and Becan (Campeche); Chichén-Itzá and Uxmal (Yucatán) and Tulum and Coba (Quintana Roo) to name but a few of them, are able to be viewed by the visitor to the Yucatan Peninsula.
The site of Bonampak,90 miles southeast of Palenque, is the site of the finest Mayan murals ever to be discovered. They are housed in the temple of the Frescoes, and show scenes of Mayan warfare, their sacrifices and their celebrations..
One of the most incredible and amazing sites, not to be missed while in the Yucatan region are the ruins at Chichén-Itzá.
Chichén-Itzá which translates to (‘City of the Water Wizards’.) is south of Mérida by about 75 miles, and contains the Pyramid of Kukulcan (El Castillo), where you can find the ‘Red tiger with jade eyes’.
Spring and Autumn equinox sees a gathering here of huge crowds who come to see the shadows work their illusions.
They create the illusion of a serpent descending the northern staircase.
While you are here you will also want to see the snaking columns of the Temple of the Warriors, a ball court in perfect condition, El Caracol (the observatory), the Caves of Balankanche and the Sacred Cenote (where young girls were sacrificed, by being thrown into the well for the rain god Chac).
In addition to the history and cuisine, you will find sports and outdoor adventures just waiting for you with the white sand beaches, parasailing, and boating, as well as deep sea fishing.
While in the Yucatan, you will want to pay attention to the wildlife not only for the sake of the beauty, but also for your own safety. There are myriad wild animals that should not be fed or interacted with. Stay safe on your hiking adventures.
Mexico’s past, as well as its present, with the wonderful restaurants, seafood that is unbeaten anywhere and the spiced dishes that it is so famous for, is waiting for you.
Come see what they have to offer.
Fatal error: Call to undefined function related_posts() in /home/outdoor/public_html/wp-content/themes/min/single.php on line 169