Chichen Itza: December 12

  1. The first temple you see upon entering the several-acre grounds of Chichen Itza, the Mayan ruins.

  2. A pillar.

  3. Charming curlique.

  4. One of the lesser temples. Only the priests would walk (climb) up the very steep stone steps.

  5. The overall temple complex.

  6. A side building.

  7. Hieroglyphs, my favorite element of Mayan sculpture.

  8. Closeup.

  9. Marvelous glyphs all over the top of the building.

  10. Another ... closeup.

  11. Pillars AND outlying buildings.

  12. The main temple. It is not easy to climb up those steep stone steps. They put a rope in the middle that you can hang onto. 30 meters tall.

  13. In a more perfect world, I would remember the function of the circle of standing pillars around this building. There must be a web site.

  14. The stately, majestic temple.

  15. Guardians.

  16. I love the closeup.

  17. If you stare long enough, you might see a hundred images.

  18. A mythical beast is devouring a man?

  19. Some sort of grotto on the grounds of Chichen Itza.

  20. More of the wonderful glyphs. I can see where archeologists get transfixed and spend their lives deciphering.

  21. Gray and blue.

  22. The view from the top of the main temple. I climed up - that part was easy. Climbing down the steep steps was hard and I had to go one step at a time, sideways, all my weight on my right outermost thigh. For the next two days my thigh muscles were sore.

  23. Climbing down those steps.

  24. Little girls in traditional (Mayan?) dress, dancing in our restaurant, for tips.

  25. Beautiful girl.

  26. Mama balances a tray.

  27. On the way back to Playa del Carmen, our tour van stopped at this famous grotto. It's quite deep and people go for a dip. It was a hot day.

  28. A German dove in from ten meters, intimidating the Mexicans paddling around in the shallow end, hanging onto a rope. I think they couldn't swim.

  29. This day was Virgin of Quadalupe festival, perhaps the biggest religious holiday in Mexico. This cathedral was decked out with colorful flags.

  30. Closeup of the flags.

  31. Artshot (tm).

  32. Palm tree, tower and flags.

  33. A car decked out with Virgin of Guadalupe decorations. They drive around all day in convoys and kids run alongside, apparently or seemingly also all day.

  34. Funky lanterns.

  35. The best restaurant in Playa del Carmen is this Mayan traditional place - Yaxche. Don't ask me to pronounce it. I was fine with ordering off the menu.

  36. My hotel - Mosquito Blue - highly recommended (thanks Marc!)

  37. One of Mosquito Blue's two pools, at night.

Marianne Mueller
Last modified: January 5, 2005