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My Journey Round The World » Mexico

My Journey Round The World

279 days on the road…

Yaxchilán – Bonampak

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Two last ruins Maya sites before leaving Mexico: Yaxchilán which was a wonderful one - I would say my favorite with Tikal! – in the middle of the jungle! You reach it in lancha (boat) on the Rio Usumacinta, which is already an adventure! I loved to travel there in the middle of 2 countries: Mexico & Guatemala. You even have a red line inside the lancha – as for Boston ;) We could  even explore inside of the building with my electric lamp! It was great to follow this small labyrinth & beeing able to see some bats… Just before leaving we saw one monkey runing from branch to branch while hearing an Alouatta – howler monkey. Pretty loud & I would say a bit scary in the middle of ruins in the jungle! The same noise which woke us up in Palenque… Once again I couldn’t see it…

Bonampak was smaller but quite impressive as it was really high! Especialy to go up! It’s also one of the only site where you can see mural painting.

We spent the night in a Lacadon village – ok it was a bit too much a tourist attraction rather than a real cultural encounter! But the place was nice, close to a small river & it was really interesting to see how the clothing were changing: only white long tunic & everybody (men & woman) with long hair on their back – sorry no pictures! This community is said to be one of the most faithful guardians of their cultural traditions & a model to follow for regional sustainable agriculture.


Palenque

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What a wonderful view on the morning when we woke up in our small Cabaña, in the middle of the jungle! Unfortunately I woke up pretty sick… We took our time & went to the famous ruins in the afternoon. Quite impressive!!! After a small nape between Templo del Sol & Templo del Cruz I was still pretty exhausted… We went back for a nape in our cabaña. I decided to stay 1 more day in this little paradise in order to take a good rest before going to Guatemala.

Today we had a nice promenade on a cascade in the National Park ;) Tomorrow we are healding to Guatemala with a 2 days trip & more ruins….


Travel San Cristobal – Palenque

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What a trip!!! We spend 12 hours in the bus!!! Between hot & cold thanks to air condiotionning – I woke up sick the next morning! After more than 2 hours drive we stopped in the middle of nowhere – in a small city. We had a short break & just before going back to the bus, the driver said that we had to go all the way back to San Cristobal & up to Villhermosa to reach Palenque because of a landslide! Great day in the bus! Arriving in Palenque around midnight… Luckily people helped us to get a taxi to go to El Pachan, close to the ruins, where we have been able to find a room…


Last day in San Cristobal

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We had a nice & quiet last day in San Cristobal, having lunch in a typical cantina “Los Amigos” & visiting for the last time the city…


Los Pueblos Tzotziles – Chamula & Zinacatan

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On Friday, we decided to go to visit the Indigenous city close to San Cristobal. As most of the travel guide said, it was a really touritic place! After Chamula that we didn’t like because of that, we moved to Zinacatan. A bit less touristy… Just a bit… As we were got up by a little girl who bring us to her house to show us their work. Which was pretty interesting! We then had a short walk around the city & stop for a small lunch before going back to San Cristobal & seeing the kids coming back from school with their tradiotional clothes :)

We had a really quiet evening, preparing Guacamole & having fun in our lovely hostel :)


San Cristobal de las Casas

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Such a beautiful city! The oldest Spanish city from the Chiapas region with low-lying haciendas, tight sidewalks, cobbled streets. The town, made famous when Zapatistas took briefly control in 1994, is surrounded by Maya villages. It’s a cosmopolitan city full of foreigners as well as Tzotziles Indigenous, coming down from there mountains to sell their products on one of the most fascinating market in Mexico. At 2140m, I was so happy to find a better climate for me :) A bit cold at night but at least not so hot during the day!

We arrived around 10am & found a lovely hostel thanks to my dear Routard guide :) Only french people there… Fleur was the only “foreigner“ :) We went for a walk around the city, discovering our new environment… Lovely!

As the taxi driver, who bring us to the hostel offer his service, we decided to go on a trip to the Sumidero Canyon (Tom you would love it!) & the zoo in Tuxtla, on the next day. On the way there, he stopped at the cimetery: so colorful! He explained us that compared to Europe, death is not a sad moment, that’s why graves are so colorful as well as church. Those colours represent the sunbeams – if I get everything right as it was all in Spanish!

Thursday we went to visit the market, huge one with one part dedicated to Indigenous. You can see the different traditional cloth, small kids behind back of women or even small girls selling you vegetable or fruits – they already have really good commercial skills!!!

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Sumidero Canyon/Cañón Sumidero

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Again so many things to share: this beautiful San Cristobal de las Casas city, boat trip on the Canyon del Sumidero, colorful San Cristobal market – where I tasted an ant this time (I have pictures, yes, yes!) :) , the Maya villages, our lovely “french” hostel, the little disappointment to miss my friends Fred & Vincent, our great food tasing… but time is flying!

Tomorrow, we’ll say goodbye to Simon & I will be leaving with Fleur to reach Palenque, last stop in Mexico! Hope to find time to write about all the adventures soon! Still you might be able to see some pictures soon, thanks to Ariane ;)

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Huatulco

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When coming back from the Turtle Center, I spent sometimes on Mazunte beach, there I met Simon! We had a small lunch & decided to leave the same night for San Cristobal de las Casas. So I went back up to my lovely house in order to say goodbye to my host & pack. I totaly forgot that I’ll have to go down again, by night… I have to say that I had fun, with my frontal lamp, my 2 backpacks & my sticks – to be sure to arrive in 1 peace!

Unfortunately the bus was full on Sunday evening… As Potchula was a total dead city, we end up in Huatulco, a bigger beach resort 100km away. Me who wanted to escape beach & hot weather! I know lot of people love it but  it was really too hot for me… At least we had a good fish lunch! In the evening – while waiting for the bus until midnight – we went to the Zocalo – main square – which is usually full of people. However this time it seems pretty empty but really noisy because of birds… Just behind us, we heard singing, we finally followed a church service, just outside the church with people singing & dancing. It was amasing to see all those people so “motivated” & happy! I wish it could be like that when I was going to church as a kid!

When we got on the bus for San Cristobal, I foundFleur – an Australian girl speaking french! - who I met in Oaxaca hostel on the day I was leaving :)  


La Ventanilla

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Such an amasing day… Kind of a little dream! I climbed down the paradise house to go to visit La Ventanilla, an ecotouristic reserve with a mangrove: home to crocodiles, birds, turtles… I don’t know how, but I joined a mexicain tourist group while boarding. Thanks to their guide – Moises – I was directly integrated! Jorge & Hilda offered me snack on the island – I taste sope (toasted tortillas with red beans, cheese & salsa) thanks to them! They even offered me the entrance to the turtle center and more! They told me that people were always really helpful with them while travelling to Europe so they wanted to offer that too! It was hard to leave such nice people when they were heading back to Huatulco! THANK YOU VERY MUCH – I had a wonderful time!!! I’ll be really happy to go & visit them in Mexico – where they invited me – lucky me! ;)


Mazunte

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Little corner of paradise, but I can tell you, the place was worth the effort! I had to climb kind of “road” full of holes – but yes, even cars are coming here – with my 2 bags – good training for the Machu Pichu! – up to Edwige & her son Dorian who welcomed me in their superb house above Mazunte. Colourful house, really nice kitchen & lovely bathroom without telling you about the terrace… Gorgeous view! The way down at night with the frontal lamp was quite something!