It’s Time to Travel said my Heart… Definitely, said my Soul

The countdown has begun… Are you ready?

We’ll be boarding the bus in exactly four months’ time…

 

Southern Campeche & Quintana Roo Adventure

Thursday February 20th – Tuesday February 25th, 2020

We took this trip a few years ago. The thrill of seeing these Maya sites deep in the forest, without all the tourist trappings, and swimming in gorgeous blue Lake Bacalar are among our best travel memories.– Edith Wilson, Washington, DC

“A visit to Calakmul and Kohunlich was on the top of my bucket list for years; I went there two years ago, and I know I have to go again!” – Suzanne Lewis, Mexico City, CDMX

The roadless travelled in Edzna

DAY ONE, Thursday February 20: 7:30 am

This morning, we’ll board our chartered bus and drive from Merida to EDZNA, Campeche’s great city of the Itzaes. At this site there are more than twenty monumental buildings and an ingenious canal system that allowed for extensive farming. Many different birds can be seen, especially hawks. After our visit we’ll continue on to the city of CAMPECHE, the capital of the state, and check into the Hotel Baluartes for one night. The hotel is close to the colonial city center and the seaside boardwalk; where you’ll find many restaurants, pubs, shops.

A “Monster-of-the-Earth” facade at Chicanna

DAY TWO, Friday February 21: 9:00 am

Today our bus we’ll travel deeper into the Campeche countryside. Our destination is the Chicanna Eco-lodge, where we’ll stay for two nights. Along the way, we’ll visit four archaeological sites: BALAMKU, famous for its spectacular high relief stucco works; majestic BECAN, known for its fortified city walls, a moat and stunning stuccoes; XPUJIL, great for seeing birds; and finally, CHICANNA, with its Rio Bec style “monster of the earth” facades. At the end of the day, we’ll settle into our comfortable cabañas, perhaps have a drink before dinner, and then call it a night; we need to be up early the next day.

 

Spider monkey at Calakmul

DAY THREE, Saturday February 22: Before sunrise

Yes, we’ll be on the road before sunrise and will travel directly to CALAKMUL. This site is one of the largest and most impressive archaeological sites in the Maya world, and the early start will maximize our chances of spotting interesting birds such as toucans, toucanettes and wild turkeys; as well as mammals like tapirs, howler monkeys, spider monkeys, ocelots. If we are VERY LUCKY, maybe even a jaguar. In Calakmul, 6,750 ancient structures have been identified; the largest of which is the Great Pyramid. Called, Structure 2, it is more than 45 metres (148 ft) high, making it one of the tallest of the Maya pyramids. If you miss climbing pyramids in Yucatan, you’ll be happy to know you can do so in Calakmul.

Stucco masks at Kohunlich

DAY FOUR, Sunday February 23: 9:00 am

We’ll leave the eco-village after breakfast, and on the way to Bacalar, we will visit KOHUNLICH, a beautiful Maya city set amongst exotic palms. Larger-than-lifesize stucco masks adorning the balustrades are indeed impressive. Following our time in Kohunlich, we’ll see DZIBANCHE and KINICHNA. It is likely that we’ll encounter some interesting birds and animals as these two archaeological sites receive few visitors. Arriving in BACALAR, we’ll check into our accommodation and have the rest of the afternoon and evening to rest and explore the town. There are good restaurants in town and along the shore of the lagoon.

Bacalar

DAY FIVE, Monday February 24: Sleep in…

You can sleep in this morning because we’ll be spending the entire day in Bacalar, relaxing and enjoying the location. We’ll take a boat ride on the lagoon and those who want to could have lunch and a swim at the CENOTE AZUL, a very large surface cenote. The rest of the afternoon will be leisure time to enjoy the area at your own pace.

DAY SIX: Tuesday February 25: 11 am, bags ready to load

We’ll check out of our hotel at approximately noon, giving us time to have a morning swim and full breakfast before we travel to Merida, arriving back at Mejorada Plaza about 6:00pm. 

The tour includes: 

  • 5 nights of accommodation at tourism class hotels

  • 5 full hotel breakfasts

  • Transportation by private coach with a professional driver

  • 2 bilingual tour escorts, 1 bilingual guide

  • Entrance fees at all sites included in the itinerary

Not included:

  • No meals except breakfast are included. As well, it should be mentioned that many of the locations we’ll visit are remote, and our choices will be limited to simple regional fare. However, in Campeche and Bacalar we’ll find some interesting restaurants. At the pre-departure get-together in January, we’ll advise group participants what they should bring in terms of food and drink.

  • Personal services such as laundry, hotel phone calls, room service, and tips are not included.

Important:

The service providers carry standard accident insurance, but it is the responsibility of tour participants to have their own policy for emergency hospital-medical coverage that is valid in Mexico.

Prices:

Single Room: 16,500 pesos (including tax)

Sharing Double P/Person: 12,500 pesos (including tax)

Payments:

50% at time of booking

Balance by December 15, 2019

Refunds:

If cancellation is made before December 15, 2019, a full refund less 1,000 pesos (p/pers) will be made. December 15, 2019 – January 31, 2020 a 50% refund will be given. After February 1, 2020, it will not be possible to refund any payments.

For more information:

Please phone or whatsapp Carlos Rosado at:

52 999 457-7713

Or send an email:

carlos.rosado@yucatandiscovery.com

Facebook

1,2,3… 4,129… 4,130…

Facebook

It happens far too frequently; I wake up, my eyes snap open, and I immediately know three things to be true:

  1. It is not yesterday, and today has barely begun.
  2. I’ve not had nearly enough sleep.
  3. And I’m certain I will not get even 5 more minutes of it… until God knows when.

I have been a “poor sleeper” for about 15 years. I have tried every remedy known to man, woman, conventional doctor, and quack too. Nothing helps. I don’t bother trying anymore. Not much I can do; it is just “one of the things” I don’t seem to have a handle on.

I have learned how to find my glasses and my phone, make tea, and navigate my way to the guestroom; all in pitch-black darkness. I make no noise as I settle down under the covers of the guest room’s comfy queen-size. After few sips of the hot herbal brew, I open up Facebook. This is when I learn about all kinds of nonsense, and also read some interesting stories.

Tonight was not an exception; did you ever hear how Sir Alexander Fleming’s farmer-father saved the life of then-still-a-boy, Winston Churchill? In gratitude, Winston’s wealthy father paid for young Alex’s education, right through Med School at Oxford. Later, the penicillin he discovered again saved now-adult-Winston from pneumonia. Alas, charming as the story is, it belongs in the nonsense file because it never happened.

I waded through my feed of same-old, same-old U.S. political B.S. I sometimes wonder why we who live in Mexico are so consumed by what the Bully does. There’s an easy answer to that; we are terrified of what he’ll “do” next. Meanwhile the Democrats continue their infighting and dithering-about. Of course the longer they delay choosing a candidate, and thrusting him or her into the fray, the more chance he-who-cannot-be-named has to increase his “base”.  What is happening with Mexico’s politics is out-of-the-box, but as I say, I wish the international community had more interest in this. I know people fear getting “involved” in local politics because it is not allowed, but it is still important to “know” what’s going on in the country where we live.

Next I read about what matters to me: my friends. A local baker who visits the prison to motivate inmates…  Antonio, you are such a surprising man. You find ways to make the world better, one baguette at a time. I learned that a friend I haven’t seen for some time has taken up pottery and she published photos of her new pieces. Debi, the creativity oozes out of you and into that clay. I also found out that a long-ago friend who has moved back to Merida is almost finished her house reno’. Betsy, I can’t wait to see you and your home. People are traveling; Kevin, your insights are so cool. Others, like me, have company staying for a while. Emma and I had a little soiree yesterday; not earth-shattering news to anyone but us. But I’ll post a picture anyways.

When I was younger and would wake up, I used to read. But my older eyes quickly get sore unless it is daytime. So, for times like this, I am glad to have Facebook. Sweet dreams to all.

 

Illuminating… think about it

A lovely little bird sent this to me…

(The following post is not my writing. The author is unknown , but the piece was sent to me by Jeannie H., my long-time friend and colleague. I could not have expressed the sentiment better. I posted it on facebook but not everyone I know is a member…  so for you too, here it is)

Think about this and if you agree…  pass it on…

***

Gringo (a): – Hi, where are you from?

Mexican: – Hi, I’m from Mexico

Gringo (a): – Ah! The land of Chapo Guzmán, narcos, marihuana, crime and extortion.

Mexican -I’m sorry, are you a drug addict or a TV junkie?

Gringo (a) – No!!! Why?

Mexican -Because if you were an athlete or sports fan, you would have identified Mexico with Ana Guevara, Hugo Sanchez, Julio Cesar Chavez, Finito, Chicharito Hernandez, Canelo Alvarez, Rafael Marquez, etc.

If you were an educated person, you would have asked about the Aztec empire, the Mayan culture, the Olmecs or any other of the great mesoamerican cultures.

If you were a well traveled person you would have talked about our majestic archaeological sites, our tourist-friendly colonial cities, our megalopolis or our exotic beaches… the astonishing biodiversity of our rainforests, mountain ranges, deserts, conifer forests…

You could have identified Mexico with our great painters, Diego Rivera, Rufino Tamayo, Frida Khalo, José Clemente Orozco; our composers: Agustín Lara, Consuelo Velázquez, Armando Manzanero, Juan Gabriel Jose Alfredo Jimenez, our writers and poets: Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Juan Rulfo, Octavio Paz, Juan José Arreola, Elena Poniatowska, Amado Nervo, Jaime Sabines;

our inventors or scientists: Manuel Mondragón, Guillermo González Camarera, Luis Ernesto Miramontes; our cinematographers: Ismael Rodríguez, Emilio Fernández, Alfonso Cuaron, Guillermo del Toro, Alejandro González Iñárritu, Emmanuel Lubezki, and even Luis Buñuel, who, being originally from Spain, chose to adopt the Mexican nationality…

If you were a gourmand, you would have asked about Tamales, Cochinita Pibil, Mole, Adobo, Chilaquiles, Chiles en nogada, Guacamole, Pan de Muerto, etc. Or our traditional beverages: Tequila, Mezcal, wines and beers.

However, I can see, the only thing you can relate to Mexico is the provider to American drug addicts…

I just want you to realize that México is a lot more than what ignorant people and fear-mongering media knows or chooses to propagate.

There are millions of honest Mexicans, who even without knowing you, will open the door to our homes, and that if you care to visit, you will love to get to know us and to visit us. Mexico is even more than I can possibly tell you!

¡VIVA MÉXICO!

Author unknown

PS: I have also posted a slide show that depicts the real face of Mexico. The photographer is well known to me… he is my son, Carlos. Life has gotten so busy for him, and he has not taken many photos lately…. But I hope he gets back to it because he is excellent. BTW, he not only photographs people… Have a look at his work: http://carlosrosado.blogspot.com