When the Kath is away...
Central and South America - 2005
About Me (2)
Costa Rica (2)
Kath's Confessional (3)
The Weird and the Wonderful (1)
Viva Mexico! (8)
* Horsing Around Chugchilan
* Through the Clouds to Chugchilan
* Half the fun is getting there - Saquisili
* A Dog Called Quito (and a city too...)
* Of Showers, Monsters and Monkeys
* Beach Bummers in Puerto Viejo...
* Costa Rica entry-turned-rant
* Learning to dive in Utila
* Leaving Guatemala
* Lazy Days in Lago Atitlan
* Little altars everywhere... Chichicastenango
* Shopaholic goes abroad - The Chichicastenango Market
* Half the fun is getting there... To Chichicastenango
* Comments on the El Mirador Trek
* El Mirador Trek - Day 6
* El Mirador Trek - Day 5
* El Mirador Trek - Day 4
* El Mirador Trek - Day 3
* El Mirador Trek - Day 2
* El Mirador Trek - Day 1
February 25, 2005
After spending a sleepless night listening to the hippy flute player, the snoring cabana owner (his head directly behind our paper-thin wall), their 3 fighting dogs and dozens of cackling hens, we caught the "taxi" back to the crossroads and made our way to Palenque via various colectivos. From our musty cabana at the edge of Palenque National Park, we walked the 1/2 hour or so to the site entrance, sweating buckets on the way (but not complaining about the heat!).
Palenque is one of the most famous Maya sites in Mexico, and I can only imagine one of the most well-kept. The grounds were like a park, lush and manicured, with shady patches to sit and admire the buildings and picnic areas with recycling bins. Very nice, and a great contrast to the dusty and parched grounds of Teotihuacan.
Palenque is a Classic-Period Maya site, with its heyday around 700 AD. The small fraction that is excavated and explored dates from around this time. The center of Palenque is a huge building called the Palace, an administrative and residential center built and rebuilt over centuries. The Palace is filled with fantastic carved stone panels, mostly human figures, and in the middle rises an impressive tower (unique in the Maya world) constructed by King Chan Balum in honor of his diseased father. It is his father's grave that is the main attraction at Palenque, and one of the main reasons I was so eager to visit. Sadly, the tomb of King Pacal was closed, as was the museum. Doh!
However, our visit was still worth it, and we spent a nice afternoon strolling around the different pyramids and temples, taking in elaborate carvings of sacred rituals and mythical Maya figures at each altar. Again, once I figure out how to reduce the size, I will post pics. I am starting to feel stupid now...
Posted by kvabo on February 25, 2005 03:27 PM
Category: Viva Mexico!
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