Tulum: More than lizards and rocks.

Each Mayan city had a specific purpose and Tulum, situated on 12-meter tall cliffs along the east coast of the Yucatán Peninsula on the Caribbean Sea in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico, was a seaport, trading mainly in turquoise and jade and the only Mayan city built on a coast.

Easter2015-38There are several theories as to why a wall surrounds Tulum. One has a Mayan population of 600 on the inside, protected from invaders. Another suggests only priests and nobility were housed within the walls, while peasants were kept on the outside. ~Tulumruins.net

Easter2015-31Tulum was one of the last cities inhabited and built by the Mayas with its height between the 13th and 15th centuries. They managed to survive about 70 years after the Spanish began occupying Mexico.  ~Wikipedia

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Easter2015-35In the Yucatec language, Tulum means “wall” referring to the large barricade that surrounds the settlement. In the Mayan language, Tulum was called Zama, meaning “dawn,” which is fitting since it is on the eastern coast.

Easter2015-36Tulum honored the “diving god” or “descending god” and “the god of the bee,” an important insect for the Maya even today.

These lizards are frequently sighted on and near the ruins, but apparently are not honored. Lizards get no respect, right?

Easter2015-32The Tulum site is well preserved and the beach is gorgeous. It was chilly and our tour was rushed due to another group being bused in right after us. We could have easily spent another hour exploring the site.

All images by Joyce Meyer

 

 

Playa Del Carmen…a stroll through the neighborhood.

One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things. ~ Henry Miller

Playa del Carmen… it’s all beaches, surf and tacos, right? Not quite…

It’s also all about kids playing, people working to earn a living, raising families and living life the best they can. On this Sunday morning we see kids shooting off fireworks and selling oranges, men working on home improvement projects and tinkering with cars and scooters, a mother watches as a child teeters while taking first steps, clothes hang on the line drying in the warm sunshine, dogs play chase and families share a meal. Same, but different.

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Easter2015web-Playa del Carmen… ocean  is pretty, the weather is pleasant, dogs are plentiful and struggles are real.