Yucatan Peninsula Journals

Mayas in Calakmul

A January 2004 trip to Yucatan Peninsula by JesusW

Calakmul Photo, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico More Photos
Quote: Calakmul was one of the most powerful Mayan cities in the classical period. Researchers estimate that 60,000 people were living in the area at the peak of the city.
Panuchos at Xpuhil Photo, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico
Quote:
For breakfast I found THE best place in town, not a fancy luxury restaurant with fountain and expensive furniture, no, I found the real breakfast of the area.Start at the bus station, walk to the right till you reach the corner of the block. This is the crossroad between the highway connecting Chetumal-Escarcega and the road that goes north to the center of the Peninsula. Once in this corner (north-east) cross to the opposite (south-west) and you will find several ladies in small huts selling food, and lots and lots of people, some have "licuados de fruta" (fruit smoothies) but other make an excellent breakfast called "Panuchos" (no translation) which are fried tortillas with some refrie...Read More

Mayas in Calakmul

Overview

Calakmul Photo, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico
Quote:
The name is not the original; Calakmul means two mounds/hills. The real name of the city is not clear, but this kingdom belonged to the Kaan "serpent" kingdom, rival of "nearby" Tikal in Guatemala.Calakmul has the two of the tallest pyramids in the Mayan area (after La Danta at El Mirador), measuring 50m height and with a base measuring 2 hectares. On this site, researchers have found the largest number of estelae (140), or carved stone slabs, more than in any other Mayan city. At the height of the empire, it housed more than 60,000 habitants and engulfed an area of 30 square kilometers. The site is in the middle of a 1,700,000-acre biosphere reserve, and it was declared...Read More

Cabanas

Hotel | "Cabanas "El Viajero""

Wonderfull dinner Photo, Campeche, Mexico
Quote:
Just 15 minutes north of Xpuhil, you can find the town of Zoh Laguna (a dry lagoon). At the entrance of the town, you can find some rustic cabanas for 200 pesos a night (August 2007).They include a hot-water shower in a very ample but rustic private bathroom with a concrete floor, local TV channels, and fan. There is also a biiiiig bed and a hammock. Unfortunately on my second visit there, all the cabañas were taken so I had to go for the second option, a regular hotel room, which was also clean very, but didn't have the hammock nor the extra space, loosing some of the magic, but was convenient.The place is very relaxed and clean, but you may find the roosters and dogs...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 3, 2005

Xpuhil Bus Station

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Quote:
This is a bus-stop restaurant serving fast food and Mexican food. The quality is okay and the variety not big, but if you are traveling by bus, this is your first option for food. The second one would be the hotel where you are staying. Typical menus would include eggs, several styles; enchiladas with green tomatillo sauce; beef steak with potatoes and salad; grilled chicken; etc.  There are some small restaurants on the main highway, but you can't be too picky to eat there, as they are not tourist-oriented. Typical food includes salbutes, a piece of fried tortilla with beans and topped with chicken or pork, lettuce, and white fresh cheese. You can find different flavors of tamales:...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on February 3, 2005

Calakmul

Attraction | "Archaeological ruins of Calakmul"

Calakmul Photo, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico
Quote:
This Mayan site was one of the largest cities/states of its era and was the rival of Tikal, Guatemala, and Palenque, Chiapas, etc. Large jade offerings have been found in the ruins and especially in rulers' tombs, some of them in a good state of preservation. Some of the more recent research works have yielded amazing jade masks in the tombs of the kings and queens of Calakmul, you really need to take a look at them in Mexico City's Arqueological museum.Structure 2 is the tallest pyramid in the Mayan area, at 62m high. Inside the pyramid, they have found at least four tombs. In good Mayan tradition, the building suffered several reconstructions and additions, it began as a small pyrami...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 3, 2005

Calakmul
about 2 hours drive west and south of Xpujil
Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

Wild Oceloted Turkey Photo, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico
Quote:
This area is a biosphere reserve, and thus no human activities should harm it: no logging, no towns, and no hotels inside the reserve.To get from the nearest town with services (Xpuhil), it is about 120km and a little bit more than a 1-hour drive through a very healthy jungle full of life. You can meet wild animals that are not afraid of humans, as they haven't been harassed. On the road to the ruins I saw wild turkeys, deer, some tropical birds, and monkeys. The driver told me that, in 10 years of driving, he has seen jaguars three times but just briefly, as they are fast cats, but it would have been an incredible experience nonetheless.To get the most of the wildlife, you need to g...Read More
Quote:
If you arrive by bus, the only option you have is to take a taxi, but don't worry—it’s not that expensive. In this area, there is no good public transportation, so everybody relies on taxis to travel around. From Xpuhil pueblo, you can visit several archeological zones: Xpujil, Becan, Hormigero, Balamku, Rio Bek, and especially Calakmul. To get to Becan or the town of Zoh Laguna, it was only MXP$15 one-way. It is always a good idea to ask the price of the trip before you board the taxi and write it down on a piece of paper to make sure you understood the driver the first time; this makes for a nicer experience overall (not only in this area, but wherever you travel). Be aware that th...Read More