➜ Playa Del Carmen tour – day 3!
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Here is Day 2 in case you missed it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UsOjHxk1j5o
0:00 On the road to Chichen Itza (Yuka Tours) with our tour guide, Steve! Yuka Tours provided super comfortable transportation, which was included with the trip. This is a link to the tour we took: http://www.yucatreks.com/tour/chichen-itza-valladolid/
0:30 There are a variety of open shops and vendors all throughout the Mayan ruins. Some people get mad about this, but Steve explained it perfectly: hundreds of years ago, the city was a vibrant place and was also filled with vendors. Commerce has existed throughout all of history, so there isn’t any sense in getting upset in seeing this happen again in recent times. Also, you can score good deals if you haggle with the vendors and your dollars help contribute to the local economy. The quality of the goods is better than what you will find in 5th Avenue, so if you want to pick up gifts this is a good place to do it.
1:00 Steve explains how the city was formed out of the jungle. They left the city and the jungle immediately came back. The sun is EXTREMELY strong here so make sure to wear sunscreen and bring an umbrella and a hat. This is one of the largest ancient cities for the Mayans and features diverse architectural styles due to cultural diffusion. This could be seen as the “New York” of the Mayan age.
2:05 Watch out for the wind…two people from California apparently do not know how to operate an umbrella 🙂
2:15 Skull platform or Tzompantli. This platform used to carry decapitated heads as a means to scare or intimidate their population.
2:40 Mayan ball game pit for their version of racquetball. What isn’t similar to racquetball is that the losing team is killed and their heads displayed for all to see.
3:00 The Temple of the Bearded Man: this is a masonry building that was likely a holy site.
3:13 Chacmool is a pre-Columbian type of sculpture with a bowl that held offerings to the gods. They likely depicted warriors or soldiers.
3:35 El Caracol Observatory: a giant building that was likely used as a lookout or a place to observe the night sky. It seems to be aligned with the orbit of Venus, which the Mayans held in high esteem.
4:15 Hacienda Restaurante Selva Maya. You wouldn’t think a buffet place would be good, but this place served up delicious, traditional Mayan food that you likely would have trouble finding anywhere else in the world.
5:22 Zaci Cenote: gorgeous underground cenote with beautiful, awe inspiring landscape. However, likely to be crowded with hordes of tourists.
5:42 Cenote Xkeken: another cenote that is much more hidden and usually filled with locales. Swim with guppies, catfish and harmless bats and enjoy beautiful scenes such as a ray of sunlight shining down from above.
7:17 Cathedral of San Gervacio: located in the ancient town of Valladolid, Yucatan, this is a beautiful house of worship.
7:54 Puerto Cocina Urbana: amazing seafood restaurant a bit off the beaten path in Playa Del Carmen’s 5th Avenue. Especially known for their seafood tacos and dishes. Extremely fresh and highlighted recommended.
8:48 Parque Los Fundadores: we came back to see a performance of flying Papantla men (Voladores de Papantla). They fly around a 98 ft pole while music plays (supposedly invented to end a drought).
9:22 Karen’s Seafood Steakhouse and Pizza. This is a cute place to rest and have a drink. The food and drink are unremarkable, but do it for the live music and the swing chairs!
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Music Provided by NoCopyrightSounds:
Umpire – Gravity (feat. Liz Kretschamer): http://nocopyrightsounds.co.uk/video/umpire-gravity-feat-liz-kretschmer-ncs-release/?download=1
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