Tulum Travel Blog› entry 9 of 26 › view all entries
October 9th, 2009 – by: geokid
The architecture of Tulum is typical of the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula. Structures of the architecture usually have a step running around the base that sits on a low substructure of platform. Doorways are usually narrow and columns would be present for support if the building was massive or had multiple levels. The exterior wall are typically plain with one or bands of molding at the top. Each room usually has one or two small windows with an altar against the back wall. The roof can be either a wooden beam and rubble with a flat ceiling or an all stone Maya vaulted ceiling.
Some archaeologist suggest that Tulum was dedicated to the Diving or Descending God. There are numerous example of images of this god in the stone carvings and murals of Tulum.
Things not to miss are the defensive wall, Temple of the Frescoes, niched figures of the Maya “diving god”, the Temple of the Diving God, the Castillo and the landing beach.
Tulum is located at the seaward edge of a tall, steep limestone cliff and is protected on the landward side by a defensive wall that varies from about 10 feet to 16 feet in height and 24 feet thick. The wall parallel to the sea is about 1,300 feet long with the 2 side portions about 550 feet long.
The Temple of the Frescoes is the central platform of the ceremonial precinct and is one of the more spectacular structures at Tulum.
The Castillo is the tallest structure at Tulum at 24 feet in height. The Castillo is the largest structure in the eastern complex. The Castillo was built on a previous building that was a colonnade in design with a beam, rubble and mortar roof.
Coastal and land routes converged at Tulum which is well documented in the artifacts found in or near Tulum. These artifacts include manufacture copper objects and obsidian from the Mexican highlands, obsidian from Ixtepeque in northern Guatemala, gold manufactured objects from Panama and Oaxaca , Mexico,jade from Guatemala, and a wide variety of ceramic objects from all over the Yucatán.
It may have been one of these seafaring canoes that Christopher Columbus first encountered off the shores of the Bay Islands of Honduras.
There is little to no parking at the site of Tulum.
The access fee is 40 pesos (video cameras extra 30 pesos). Open daily 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
The city was first mentioned by Juan Díaz, part of Juan de Grijalva's expedition of 1518. The first detailed description of the ruins was published by John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood in 1843 in the book Incidents of Travel in Yucatan. Work conducted at Tulum continued with Sylvanus Morley and George P. Howe beginning in 1913. The work was continued by the Carnegie Institution from 1916 to 1922, Samuel Lothrop in 1924 who also mapped the site, Miguel Angel Fernandez in the late 1930's and early 1940's, William Sanders in 1955, and then later in the 1970's by Arthur Miller.
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