Thursday, January 7, 2016

Christmas Cruise Part Three - Mexico

Our second and final port of call was Cozumel, Mexico. We didn't stay in Cozumel for long though. Our shore excursion was a trip to see the Mayan ruins in the town of Coba. So we took a 40 minute hydrofoil boat ride from the port in Cozumel over to the town of Playa del Carmen. There we met up with our tour host Addy and the other six people on our tour for a 90 minute van ride on the mainland to Coba. 

At Coba, we spent all of our time inside the national park that holds the Mayan ruins. We picked up a local tour guide named Sergio who explained about the history of the area and the significance of everything we saw. Coba's dominance was from around 600-900AD when the area had around 50,000 inhabitants. Coba was abandoned around 1550 and archaeologists didn't start to access the site because of its overgrowth until the 1950s. This area was opened up to the public in the 1970s. We had to travel back into the rainforest to get to the temple. Many people walk or rent bikes that they pedal themselves. Our tour company had booked us bicycle cabs - Parker and Daryl rode on one and I rode with the smaller two boys on another. Our drivers got us through the muddy paths and people pretty quickly.

Here we are finally at Nohuch Mul. This is the largest Mayan pyramid left on the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico at 138 feet tall.  Only the front half has been excavated; the back half is still covered by brush and dirt and trees. This temple pyramid dates back over 1,000 years in age.

All 5 of us climbed the pyramid! Parker and Wesley went zipping up the 120 steps super fast. Daryl and I took it a littler slower holding Davis' hands as we climbed together.

Amazing views of the rainforest canopy.

It was a pretty awesome adventure to check off the bucket list. The two older boys have now walked on the Great Wall of China and climbed a Mayan pyramid - plus Daryl and I have seen the pyramids at Giza, climbed Mount Sinai, toured Israel and visited Stonehenge.

Part of one of the Mayan roads left.

This is one of the famous courts that the Mayans used to play ball. The ball weighed about 10 pounds and you had to get it into the hoops at the top of the sloped wall. But you could only move the ball with your elbows, hips or knees.

Another ruin at the site - this one is called "The Church"

Once we got back to the bus we had a small simple lunch of a sandwich, chips and cookie. The boys loved seeing the labels.

Heading back to the dock in Playa del Carmen. The dock was right next to a very fancy all-inclusive resort that had two areas - one for families and one for adults only.

Someone was a little tuckered out and slept the whole way back to Cozumel.

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