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An interpretive text from Tulum, the most heavily trafficked archaeological site that we visited, invites the tourist to imagine the first encounter between the Spanish and the ancient inhabitants of Tulum from two different perspectives. This encounter, it tells us, … Continue reading
You would be hard pressed to find any history of the Yucatan Peninsula in which the relations between the indigenous Mayan population and the Hispanic conquistadores would be described as anything other than fractious and violent. Certainly to call it … Continue reading
Leaving Uxmal we discovered a restaurant that surely relied upon the tour buses that visit Uxmal. In fact, two pulled in after (thank goodness!) we had already ordered. Most of the [other] tourists were Russian. The bus driver (fluent in … Continue reading
How ruinous should a ruin be? As I visited Uxmal, I noticed the contrast between the ruins that Stephens described (and lived in) and those that I saw. The stones used to be a jumble, but today the monuments are … Continue reading
Plaque at the entrance to Uxmal informing us that in 1976, the government of the state of Yucatan gave these “installations” to the INAH (Instituto Nacional de Antropologia y Historia):
Up to this time our course had been before the wind. Our journey from Merida had again been a sort of triumphal procession. We had been passed from hacienda to hacienda, till we fell into the hospitable hands of Don … Continue reading
As soon as we entered the grounds of Uxmal, we stopped. This first sight of the Pyramid of the Magician was so much more. . .well, magical than anything we had seen so far. In fact, the best term to … Continue reading
Stephens wrote about the treatment of Indians working on Haciendas like the one where we went to the spa: Early in the morning we were roused by loud bursts of music in the church. The cura was giving them the … Continue reading
Why travel in the footsteps of Stephens and Catherwood or anyone else, for that matter? I think footsteps add historical depth to a journey. They help us think about the space between the past and the present. Others have felt … Continue reading