Tikal, one of the great Mayan Ruins
Tikal Travel Blog› entry 5 of 7 › view all entries
After our visit to the market of Chichicastenango, we prepared for an early flight to Flores, our gateway to Tikal. It was a quick airplane ride, it took us about half an hour to reach the city of Flores, but from Flores to Tikal, its another 1 hour ride by car. We stayed in Tikal Inn, one of the hotels that is within the protected area of Tikal. The hotel gave us the warning that after 10 pm electricity would be turned off. There I knew that the place is being run by a generator.
The entry price for the park cost about 150 quitzales (20$), and i guess for locals cost about 25 quitzales($3.
Here in Tikal are a numbers of pyramids that are just being left and engulfed by nature. As our tour guide has explained, it takes a while for this ruins to be excavated. First of all, the ruins is covered with the rich soil of Tikal and has grown a good numbers of trees and i guess the forest itself is one of the 4th largest producer of oxygen in the world, and so it's not only uncovering the ruins that is important but maintaining a balance ecosystem itself.
Anyways,our next stop, Temple IV, the tallest structure in Tikal which is about 212 feet from the base of its platform to the top. The first glimpse you get of the temple from the maudslay causeway is awesome, for the temple has not been restored and all but the temple proper and its roof are covered with foliage. The stairway is covered in earth and roots, but you can get to the top of the temple using a system of roughly made wood ladders set against the steepside of the pyramids. From the top of the temple IV you would be able to view Temple 1( temple of the great Jaguar) and Temple II. Well temple IV got hit by lightnings two years ago, and so the archaelogist responded, and had stabilized the place.
Entering the Great Plaza from the Tozzer Causeway, you'll be struck by the towering stone structure that is Temple II, seen from the back. Also called the Temple of the Masks because of a large face carved in the roof comb, the template dates back from about A.D. 700. Temple II, has a steep staircase on the side, and so you could easily go on top. The view on top is very awesome, looking at Temple I and the Acropolis.Directly across from Temple II you'll see TEmple I (Temple of the Great Jaguar), the most strikin structure in Tikal. One of the lintels has been removed for preservation in Guatemala City. The whole structure is made of limestone, as are most others at Tikal. The credits for excavating this area should be given to the archaelogists of University of Pennsylvania.
Anyways, late that afternoon, it started raining heavily, and so our chance of witnessing the sunset would be very dimmed. So we just decided to visit the Tikal Museum (with no photography allowed) so i started reading whatever details in the pictures and artifacts. There were two important items that were stolen in this museum dating back in 1981,two jaded carvings, that up to this time remained lost or stolen.
As soon as the rain stopped, we headed back to the hotel.As the night gets darker or reached 10 pm, the electricity was turned off. You'll be hearing all the animals and insect making different kinds noise. It was a complete darkness and my first experience for a hotel with no electricity.