Friday, 5 January 2018

Mexico - Exploring Chichen Itza

Blooming Fiction, Travel Excursions, Chichen Itza

Mexico boasts an impressive array of historic sites, one of the most well known being the Chichen Itza. 

As one of the new seven wonders of the world, the Chichen Itza often attracts more than two million visitors a year.

Located on the Mexican Yucatan Peninsula, the stepped pyramid from Mayan times has dominated the ancient city that thrived here from 600 AD to the early 2nd century. A lot of the history surrounding the Chichen Itza is shrouded in mystery and much of today's non fiction is purely fiction. With no records or evidence available to corroborate facts, much of today's knowledge is speculation.

Blooming Fiction, Travel Excursions, Chichen Itza
Blooming Fiction, Travel Excursions, Chichen Itza

Enlisting on to a tour group is the best way to explore the city of Chichen Itza. Getting lost is easy when you're left on your own to explore so join up with a local tour guide to get the most out of this excursion.

The main focal point of the city is of course the pyramid, also known as the El Castillo. Restoration work on the pyramid has only been conducted on part of the structure to indicate the state of the monument before work began. 

Interesting facts about the El Castillo include the fact that the temple at the top is not central. The Mayans believed that nothing should be perfect except for their god, which is why no Mayan pyramid was ever 'perfect'.

The city was built with impeccable levels of knowledge and acoustics. Structures were erected in such a way that sound on the ground would rise up to the top of El Castillo. Simply clapping your hands at the base at the pyramid will emanate a tinny sound that echoes from the top of the structure. 

Blooming Fiction, Travel Excursions, Chichen Itza
Blooming Fiction, Travel Excursions, Chichen Itza

In addition to El Castillo, there are many other structures still standing, or at least partially, on the site of Chichen Itza. 

The Ball Court is one of the largest structures still standing, aside from the pyramid. This was used for games of two teams who would aim to get the ball through one of the hoops on either side of the wall. The only downside to the games was that the losers often lost their lives too. 

Another piece worth seeing is the Wall Of Skulls. Exactly what it says on the tin, the many faces on the wall indicate the history of this monument as to being a place where people were quite literally beheaded. Their heads were left on display on top of the monument after the carnage. A splash of water onto the wall reveals some stunning colours which soon disappear as the water dries. 

Being a UNESCO World Heritage site, you cannot climb the pyramid but there are still ample opportunities to get some fantastic photographs of the ancient city.

If you're looking to stay in Mexico, try the Sensatori in Riviera Maya.

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