|Today we went exploring in the hotel zone. The hotel zone is a strip of land along the beach that is filled mostly with large, fancy, expensive hotels. Between the hotel zone and the city is a nice lagoon. The hotel where we are staying is in the city and is called the Hotel Alux. Alux means gnome in English. (A tiny man that lives in the forest. He has a white beard and a pointed hat.) Hotel Alux is not fancy and does not have luxuries such as a swimming pool, but it is a nice, basic hotel and costs only $27 per night. Those on the beach start at about $200 and will get more expensive in the tourist season which starts the first of December.
One can easily get from downtown to the beach in about 30 minutes on a city bus.
Also in the hotel zone is a small Mayan archeological site called El Rey (the king). It is not a very significant Mayan site compared to some that will be seeing later in the trip. We went there to check out the ruins but mostly to see the birds and iguanas that call El Rey their home. We saw about 30 Spiny-tailed iguanas of various sizes and colours. A few of them were quite large.
I am on a quest to see how many birds I can see in the next six months. The record for the number of bird species seen in one year is 755 (Have you seen the movie "The Big Year" which is about this contest). I have made a list of 360 new ones that I want to see. I probably won’t see them all but I will give it a good try. Today I saw 16 species of which four were new to me. The best one of the day was the Yellow-throated Warbler. A tiny bird that lives in Central America from Panama as far north as the southern tip of Texas.
It was a good day but Laura and I both got a bit of a sunburn.