La Aventura with Patti & James

06 July 2018 | Faial Island –Atlantic Portugal
24 June 2018 | National Holiday day in Faial
22 June 2018 | afternoon whale watching boat trip
20 June 2018 | an enjoyable day trip to another island.
19 June 2018 | Fabulous Faial. – Azorean Island
18 June 2018 | Faial Island – Horta Harbour - Mid Atlantic
29 May 2018 | Mid Atlantic - in the middle of nowhere
26 May 2018 | the cruising yachtsman’s haven
25 May 2018 | party day in Hamilton
10 May 2018 | Vero Beach/Ft Pierce –road trip to Jacksonville.
12 April 2018 | Vibeke onboard
17 March 2018 | lovely to return to Belize and Mexico and meet up with sailing friends along the way
24 January 2018 | I have become so interested in Guatemala textiles
17 January 2018 | So great to catchup with so many friends and our families
01 November 2017 | what a wonderful Guatemalan fiesta to experience
29 October 2017 | Volcanic crater
28 October 2017 | Antiqua - Guatemala


25 February 2017 | TOUR TIME IN MEXICO

IMAGE – Cobá

Saturday 25 February – our Mayan tour day. We left the boat in the dark of the morning to catch the 5.30am fast ferry to Cancun. From there we caught the minibus into the main bus terminal with all the locals heading off to work – the town, very busy even at this early hour. The birds were singing their morning chorus in the trees and the buses and minivans were rushing past taking all the locals out to work in the Hotel zone. The workers all looked smart in their various corporate uniforms, chefs, waiting staff and cleaning staff all looked keen and happy with their day ahead.
Our 1st stop at the bus station was via the breakfast stall for a boiled egg, chicken and rice in a freshly baked roll was tasty indeed and a good start for our day.
We stood waiting from 6.40am outside the tour office for our arranged pick-up at 6.50. At just after 7am the staff from the tour office arrived for work, and after their quick phone call to the operator to confirm we paid our $US35 per person - the 16 seater van arrived and we off on our tour.
After getting through the town and stopping off at a few of the huge hotels out along the Cancun beachfront resort strip, our little 16 seater van was full with both American and Mexicans. Our multi-lingual tour guide Silvestre english was difficult to understand with his strong accent. The tour began by took a rather strange, and not the advertised route – 1st heading to Playa del Carmen to collect 2 Mexican girls and then on to Cobá - the long way round!
Silvestre did his ‘tour guide’ talk during the drive, from what I could understand he had an issue with Hollywood films miss-information about Mayan culture, and some views about various religions verses Mayan beliefs. Today we were visiting ‘Mayapan’ the original Mayan Indian name for the region. He told proudly about his distant relatives and how they were great builders, and they left thousands of temples and palaces spread through the peninsular in over 40 cities. Hundreds of stone monuments carved in strange glyphs known as stelae leave a historical account of the Maya past.
Visiting the ancient Maya ruins were one of the things on our “must-do” list whilst we were visiting the Yucatan Peninsula. Chichen Itza– one of the “7 Wonders of the World”, is about 3 hours inland from Cancun, but instead from my reading I thought Cobá would be a better visit for us. It is older than Chichen Itza, much larger than Tulum, and you can still climb the pyramid!
Also we only felt comfortable leaving the boat at anchor for the day. At least one other boat was left for a few days and had to be rescued by a few of the fellow sailors as she dragged her anchor when the owners were off on for a few days of inland travel. Many other chose to dock their boats in one of the local marinas during the time they were away travelling. We are planning on doing lots of travel in Guatemala when the boat will be in the boatyard- so this taster day trip works well for us.
Around 100 AD, the area around Cobá grew, and with it an increase in its social and political status making Cobá one of the biggest and most powerful city states in the Yucatan, and home to about 55,000 Mayan families. Beginning around 900 AD, Cobá started a lengthy power struggle with Chichen Itza, and after 1000 AD, Cobá lost most of its political weight among city states. It did, however, maintain some symbolic and religious importance and new buildings were constructed between 1200-1500 AD. Cobá was abandoned at the time the Spanish conquered the peninsula around 1550. Unlike the flat expanse surrounding Chichen Itza, or being along the Caribbean coast like Tulum, Cobá ruins are a silent testimonial to the once great Maya civilizations that tamed this jungle into a centre of mysterious magnificence.
The site is very spread out, and to make the most of the 2 hours here we rented bicycles to get around the site – good fun and good exercise.
We spent most of our time exploring the Nohoch Mul Group of ruins contains El Castillo, which rises 42m high above the jungle canopy - this is the 2nd tallest pyramid in the Yucatan, outreaching El Castillo at Chichen Itza. The climb to the top of El Castillo is 120 very steep and irregular steps. No - we didn’t make it all the way to the top – but enough to enjoy the experience AND the needed to descend going backwards holding the rope ladder – this also helped as we were not looking down!
Around the vast sight there are many ancient Stela, which are carved stoned with various inscriptions and images – but you can no longer make out anything clearly due to erosion. One of the famous Stela of Cobá has the Maya calendar and its calculation that a new era began on Dec. 21, 2012! Apparently this Long Count inscription says that when the 5,200-year Long Count of the Maya calendar ends the world will experience a “rebirth”.
We enjoyed our ‘Indiana Jones’ adventure around Cobá – and looking forward to visiting more Mayan sites whilst in Guatemala.
Vessel Name: La Aventura
Crew: James & Patti

Who: James & Patti