A week in the sun at Play del Carmen travel blog

Mayan Pyramide

Sun Worship

Game area, high priest at far end, king on upper left, normal...

This was the market. There used to be a roof on it

Space in a wall

What it looks like before it is restored

The rocks behind are the temple...according to Raphael, the archeologist

A wall they are working on at the main building

A water urn pre-restoration

Ek Balam, you want me to climb it??

The other side of the main building at Ek Balam. This is...

Climbing the main buildng at Ek Balam

The view from part way up

Steep and narrow stairs so that as people approach the high priest...

Sav jumps down the last few steps

We wake up today stupid o┬┤clock to be driven 2.5 hours to Chichen Itza. This is the ancient Mayan centre. We get a Mayan guide, Raphael, who grew up on Chichen Itza, is an archeologist AND works on the Mayan ruins. Amazing!

The site was incredible. There was the place where they played a game - it was a 6 pound ball, hit with sticks and you have to get it through a small stone hoop about 20 feet off the ground. The kicker...the winner gets beheaded as a religious honour.

All sorts of amazing audio tricks like echos and sounds changing from a clap into a bird call, visual tricks like sun poking through a window on one end, travelling a kilometer across the site and lighting up a statue on the other end, etc. Showed incredible understanding of physics.

Then Felix (our driver) drove us to a new archeological site called Ek Balam. It isn't on most Mexican maps of ruins yet. Raphael took us in and he worked at this site. We were allowed to climb it still, and it was HUGE, Much bigger than Chich.

Raphael took us behind the restored area to show us what it looked like when they started working on it, then took us to a hill of rocks and told us it was a temple. Quite awesome, literally.

We got back to the resort and went to the Asian restaurant: Gong. It was a wonderful dinner, but we were the only table filled in the restaurant. Needless to say service was wonderful. It was the night of the Superbowl, might have had something to do with it.

Guide: Raphael Burgos Perez phone # (045) 9992-646262

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