Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Day 3 - Chichen Itza / Ik Kil Cenote


This morning we take a short drive to Ik Kil Cenote where the group will go for a swim after visiting Chichen Itza. Can't wait to jump in this swimming hole!!!

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Chichen Itza, a Unesco World Heritage site, is one of the most visited places in Mexico. Come early to beat the heat and the crowds but no matter when you come, it is sure to amaze. Tales of the infamous ball court games are easy to imagine when you walk into the center of the court. There are 13 ball courts in the park and this represents the 13 heavens in Maya religion. El Castillo, the main pyramid of Chichen Itza, has nine platforms representing the 9 levels of the underworld. It also features 91 steps on each side of the pyramid and including the top floor, totaling 365 steps for each day of the year.

                      
                                

     detail of the temple with serpent heads at the base...




the Chac Mool at the top of the Warrior Temple





The view from the very beautiful Mayaland Hotel lobby looking out to the observatory of Chichen Itza. 


 The Mayaland Hotel also has incredible tropical landscaping and an observatory of its' own, private bungalows, and three pools.
Chichen Itza was once owned by the explorer Edward Herbert Thompson and the adjacent hotel, the Chichen Hotel, was once his hacienda. 




the observatory featuring nightly shows.


Moorish architecture dominates the style of the hacienda.


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