Mayan mysteries in Tikal.

GUATEMALA_TIKAL_22

Welcome to Tikal. As one of the main reasons why I wanted to visit Guatemala, these Mayan ruins definitely deserve their spot on my ‘this is…’ series. They’re worthy of the title ‘UNESCO world heritage’, not only because it used to be one of the most powerful kingdoms in ancient Maya history. When you visit, the atmosphere just breathes greatness and mysteriousness. Questions pop up instantly: how did they manage to make such grand temples in a time with such few building tools? How did they live? Who are those Mayans, that left so many secrets and not enough answers to silence our hunger for knowledge? Where did they sacrifice? – Yep, always interested in the bloody details. – Are there jaguars in the neighbourhood? Is it likely that I’ll be served for breakfast to some jungle animals?

Only one tip from me: take a guide and visit very very early in the morning. – Ok, those are two tips, but you can combine them, no worries. – First of all, you’re in a jungle area where it can get very hot and very humid at the same time. The last thing you want to do is climbing thousands – I’m exaggerating a little bit – of stairs while liters of sweat are gushing out of your pores. You will sweat a lot already in the early morning, but at least it’ll be bearable. Also,take a guide. Preferable one that can speak. Not only does he make sure you don’t get lost in the forest, he also tells wonderful stories about the Mayans, shows you animals you wouldn’t see otherwise and you actually know at which kind of buildings you’re looking at.

GUATEMALA_TIKAL_25
Ruins and jungle.

Don’t forget, Tikal is HUGE. Only a small percentage is excavated, but the site contains about 3000 different structures. Loads of them are buried beneath heaps of foliage, trees and other vegetation. – Tomb Raider level 3467 – Nevertheless, the small percentage of uncovered ruins are more than worth the visit. My favorite part of Tikal? The view from the top of Temple IV, overseeing the heads of the other temples above the crests of the jungle, is just priceless.

GUATEMALA_TIKAL
Sacred Ceiba tree.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_2
More jungle.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_6
Anyone volunteering to be sacrificed?
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_3
Pretty steep climb.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_10
Back of a Temple.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_11
Temple. Forgot which one.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_26
Jungle.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_4
Happy howler monkey.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_8
What’s this, what’s this?
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_15
Main plaza.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_13
Main plaza.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_19
Main Plaza.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_20
Beautiful Mayan decorations on Temple II.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_24
On Temple IV.
GUATEMALA_TIKAL_27
View from Temple IV.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s