Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Chichen-Itza Adventure

From our room I was able to capture a beautiful sunrise peeking over the resort. Before we leave, I will need to venture out early to catch the sunrise from the beach.

This was a great way to start off our day with an adventure to Chichen Itza. Our tour guide told us this one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. This means we were given a full history lesson of the Mayan people, the site and just about everything else on our 2 hour drive to the site and 3 hour plus time there. I soaked it in. Others in my immediate group did not.

I have not seen the pyramids, so the Temple of Kukulkan was huge. The most amazing thing was the precision of the Mayans in constructing it. I can see why it made a world wonder.

Unlike the Egyptians, the structures have no tunnels or interior chambers. They are built on a sub-base of stone and other fill material. The shell is where the details are applied. The Temple of Kukulkan, however, is built over another structure.
All of the major structures are roped off, not allowing visitors to climb the steps. Just looking at the steep sloe is intimidating enough.

The picture above gives a good reference of the height of the goal in the Great Ballcourt. No one is sure of the exact game rules, but the players had to basically put a solid rubber ball through the goal using their hips. The winning team's captain was later sacrificed and his head placed amongst others (photo below).
Though this was an all day tour, we still had a little time to kick back and have some fun at the Chichen Itza resort.

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