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>> Civilization Maya 1, (6 days / 5 nights)


Riviera Maya – Tulum - Bacalar – Kohunlich – Escarcega - Palenque – Agua azul (Waterfalls) - Palenque – Champoton - Campeche – Uxmal - Merida – Cnichen Itza - Ek-Balam – Riviera Maya


Day 1: Riviera Maya – Tulum – Bacalar

In the morning you will visit Tulum. The ruins are located on 12-meter cliffs, along the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula on the Caribbean Sea. This is one of the best-preserved coastal Maya sites and today it is a popular site for tourists. Tulum was protected on one side by steep sea cliffs and on the landward side by a wall that averaged about three to five meters in height. Among some of the more spectacular buildings at the site is the Temple of the Frescoes that included a lower gallery and a smaller second story gallery. The archaeological site is relatively compact. Its proximity to the modern tourism development along the Mexican Caribbean coastline has made it a popular destination for tourists.


You will spend a night in one of the local hotels in Bacalar, a small town in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. This was the first city in the region which the Spanish Conquistadores succeeded in taking and holding in 1543.


After the town was sacked by pirates in 17th century, the Fortress de San Felipe Bacalar was completed in 1729, and may still be visited today. Bacalar is also the name of the lagoon, Bacalar lagoon on the east side of the town. This lagoon has an unusual beauty , at sunset the water has all the colors of rainbow.



Day 2: Bacalar - Kohunlich – Escarcega – Palenque

In the morning you will visit Kohunlich. It is a large archaeological site of the pre-Columbian Maya civilization, located on the Yucatan Peninsula. The site covers about 21 acres, surrounded by dense sub-tropical rainforest, and it contains almost 200 mounds, that remain largely unexcavated. The city was elaborately planned and engineered, with raised platform and pyramids, citadels, courtyards and plazas surrounded with palace platforms. The places of the interest are: a massive, raised acropolis, or citadel, with a palace complex around a courtyard to the north-west; the Pyramid of the Masks; the marvelous, sunken Plaza Mervin; and a small ball court.
Next you are going to Palenque with a stop in Escarcega.



Day 3: Palenque - Waterfalls – Palenque

In the morning you will visit Palenque. The ancient Mayan city of Palenque, with its superb jungle setting and exquisite architecture and decoration, is one of the marvels of Mexico. It is about 150 meters above sea-level. It is a medium-sized site, much smaller than such huge sites as Tikal or Copan, but it contains some of the finest architecture, sculpture, and bas-relief carvings the Maya produced. You will spend a night in a local hotel.

Next you will visit the waterfalls and come back to Palenque.



Day 4: Champaton – Campeche

Next you are going to Campeche with a stop in Champaton. Campeche was founded by the two great civilizations: Mayan and Spanish. There are a number of upper-class Spanish mansions, churches and other colonial buildings still standing which serve as the city’s chief attractions. Campeche also has many brightly colored buildings reflective of Caribbean tastes. Campeche has many bastions built to protect the city against attacks and raids by pirates. Today these fortifications are the city’s main attraction. Notable sights in Campeche are: The Cathedral of the Conception; The Main Square; The Church of San Francisco. Accommodation in the hotel.



Day 5: Uxmal – Merida

In the morning you will visit Uxmal. Uxmal is one of the few Maya cities where the casual visitor can get a good idea of how the entire ceremonial center looked in ancient times. Some of the more noteworthy buildings include: The Governor’s Palace; Pyramid of the Magician; The Nunnery Quadrangle; a large Ball court for playing the Mesoamerican ballgame.

Next you will visit Merida. Merida – is the capital and the largest city of the Mexican state of Yucatan. Merida was founded in 1542 by Francisco de Montejo. It was built on the site of the Maya city, which have been a center of Mayan culture and activity for centuries. As the state and regional capital, Merida is a cultural center, featuring multiple museums, art galleries, restaurants, movie theatres and shops. Merida retains an abundance of beautiful colonial buildings and is a vibrant cultural center .



Day 6: Merida – Chichen Itza – Ek’Balam – Riviera Maya

In the morning you will visit a large pre-Columbian archeological site built by Maya civilization and located in the northern center of the Yucatan Peninsula. Chichen Itza was a major regional point in the northern Maya lowlands and exhibits a multitude of architectural styles. The site contains many fire stone buildings in various states of preservation, and many have been restored. The main structure in the center of Chichen Itza is the Temple of Kukulkan, often referred to as “El Castillo” (the castle). Archaeologists have identified in Chichen Itza the Great Ball Court about 150 meters to the north-west of the Castillo and it is very impressive. It is the largest ball court in ancient Mesoamerica.

Then you will visit Ek’Balam, a pre-Hispanic archaeological site in Yucatan. Ek’Balam means “black jaguar” in Mayan language. Ek’Balam includes 45 structures. The largest structure, known as The Acropolis, has a 5m tall jaguar’s mouth featuring winged Mayan warriors, as well as inscriptions in The Maya script. At the entrance to the Acropolis pyramid there is a monster-like figure that is said to be guarding the entrance to the underworld.

The journey ends in the Riviera Maya.




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