Experiencing a Mystical Mayan Ritual

Temazcal at Westin Resort, Cancun (Photo by Bill Rockwell)

By Dave Zuchowski: In my travels, I’ve come across the Native American sweat lodge ritual at far flung places like Jamestown, Virginia and New Mexico. But I recently encountered one of the most elaborate of them all in Cancun where I learned about the temazcal ritual at the Westin Resort and Spa. Native Americans from Alaska […]

Exploring the Mayan Ruins of Cobá

Coba-Lindsay-Taub-024

Cobá is less than two hours from Playa del Carmen, and is different from the other major Maya sites in the Yucatán for three reasons. One, it is not as fully excavated as sites like Chichén Itzá  and Tulum, and excavation is still in progress on parts of the site. Two, it is located near […]

Tulum: Maya Heaven

El Castillo at Tulum

The Mayan ruins of Tulum are located about an hour from Playa del Carmen, and have undoubtedly one of the most breathtaking settings of any Mayan site. In fact, it is the only significant Mayan ruin that lies on the coast, perched high on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea. It wasn’t until the late […]

Chichén Itzá

Chichén Itzá, El Castillo

My Mundo Maya excursion in the Yucatán began at the pre-Hispanic world’s most celebrated archaeological site, Chichén Itzá. Possibly one of the most complex Maya sites, it was originally built by the Maya and later conquered by Itzás and Toltecs, and ultimately defeated by princes of Mayapán. Having seen so many photos of the site […]

Why the Maya calendar does NOT mean the world is coming to an end in 2012

Resident iguana at Chichen Itza

There has been a tremendous amount of hype surrounding the year 2012 and predictions that the end of the world as we know it is upon us. Movies have been made, books have been written, and hysteria has been created. But rest assured, the Maya calendar did NOT predict the end – at least not […]