November 2001

ihana.com - big trip - diary - mexico - november 2001 route map

 

 

Tomb

Head

Carrying deformed baby from underworld

Saturday 17 - Tuesday 20 November

As it was already dark, we stopped in a puebla (village) 10kms outside Villahermosa, Tabasco to get changed ready to hit the town. A drunk Tabascan came wandering over and started giving us advice on the places to go and then on personal safety, getting stabbed with machetes and things. Armed with this confidence inspiring knowledge we reached the town and after spending an hour trying to find the centre, left the landy in an estacionmento for the night. We ended up in a disco called Factory which was full of mad people who all wanted to speak to us. Fortunately so did the dorises and B managed to get his oil changed.

The next day T woke up with a severe dose of Moctezumas revenge and spent the whole morning unable to leave the town centre car park. Fortunately there was plenty of water and a bucket for cleaning up the mess...

In the afternoon, we visited La Venta park where there are a selection of 3000 year old stone artifacts from the Olmec culture. The park, complete with the ubiquitous Mexican zoo, is set in tranquil jungle surroundings dotted with handy toilets.

Leave me alone!

Marshland

First camp on the Gulf of Mexico coast

We headed north towards the Gulf of Mexico coast and stopped to camp on the beach at the tiny fishing village of Emilano Zapata. This was the first sighting of the Gulf since we left Galveston at the beginning of August and it was the same, a bit minging and no waves. The following morning saw us passing by Xicalango, the place where Cortes landed in 1519, before crossing a 3.8km bridge to Ciudad del Carmen where we dropped off our clothes for washing and updated the web site at one of the slowest internet cafes so far. We drove inland until the darkness got the better of us and camped in a gravel pit, complete with bulldozer and an old guy who sat guarding it all night.

Lots of steps...

...Mouse and Wiggy struggle to the top...

...but the view is worth it

T offers restoration advice

View of the Serpents head kingdom

 

Tuesday morning we went to the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve and the Maya site of Calakmul. 60km from the main road into the thick jungle, this complex is supposed to be the largest discovered with 1500 structures, most of which are yet to be excavated. Among the trees, monkeys and toucans watch the pyramids being restored. There was only two other tourists there, a couple of wicked travellers, Stuart and Chris who are doing a similar trip to ourselves but on motorbikes.

Next port of call is Uxmal for more cool Maya stuff.

 

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