Thursday, April 21, 2011

Adios Mexico, Bonjour Vancouver!


Hello readers!  Just had an amazing vacation in Cancun, Mexico.  Literally, all we did was wake up - eat - tan/swim - snack - tan/swim - eat - sleep!  Talk about vacation! 


We stayed at the Cancun Caribe Park Royal Grand, which in my opinion, should be rated as a 5 star hotel (currently 4.5 star).  Five star staff, food, amenities, personalities of staff, beach, cleanliness- especially for non drinkers like hubs and I.  I'd like to rave about this place on blogger, but have already done so on TripAdvisor.  Check out the reviews, including mine, here ---> Cancun Caribe Park Royal Grand


Early in our trip, we took a trip to Chichen Itza, in the state of Yucatan.  At first I thought there was just one Mayan Ruins, but in reality, Mayan were autonomous people who had their own temples, kings, and states.  They were in frequent communication with each other, had markets for trade and had their own economical system.  Chichen Itza is just barely 10% excavated, despite the sweltering heat, I was trying to picture the vastness of what could be unearthed on this arid land full of dense bush, even secretly hoping I would find a crystal skull!  The Mayan mythology and cosmology is so interesting, I highly recommend reading up on it!

Some facts about Chichen Itza:
  • positioning of these temples and structures are based on sacred celestial geography
  • most famous Mayan Ruins site in the state of Yucatan
  • Each face of the four-sided Temle of Kukulcan has a stairway with ninety-one steps, which together with the shared step of the platform at the top, add up to 365, the number of days in a year
  • At sunset on the vernal and autumnal equinoxes, the stepped terraces on the pyramid creates a shadow display of seven interlocking triangles.  The light and dark interplay gives the impression of a long tail leading downward to the stone head of the serpent Kukulkan, at the base of the stairway (see video below)
  • There is evidence that the Mayan's utilized soundwaves-  "Words softly whispered at one end of the great ball court (measuring 545 feet long by 225 feet wide) are clearly audible all the way at the other end and a single clap or shout sounded in the center of the ball court will produce nine distinct echoes." "...at the pyramid of Kukulkan where the sound of a hand clap is echoed back as the chirping sound of the Quetzal bird."
  • The Great Ball Court is a site where some game was played but how they played is not fully understood, but with carved depictions on the wall of human sacrifice
  • The Observatory is believed to follow the path of Venus, Sun and the Moon
  • Human sacrifices took place here, and the acts were sacred, not a form of punishment


Here's a video on the equinox shadows at Chichen Itza


We also visited and swam in a Cenote in Valladolid.  Read more about Cenotes Here.  Let it be known that this particular Cenote had fishes swimming in it that were literally blind.  The water was so refreshingly cold, really saved the day!  On a side note, I couldn't help feeling like I was in the movie Sanctum LOL!
   


Finally, the primary reason for travelling was the Carribean beach.  White sands, azure waters, clean, warm, so inviting, friendly yet treacherous.  We lived for the beach!

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