Even though the path leading to the ruins is full of vendors displaying their wares, many vendors walk around trying to sell you souvenirs. They tell you "One Dollar Lady" and me loving a bargain gets out my $1.00 U.S. "Oh, no Lady, --1 Mayan dollar" O.K. What's a Mayan Dollar I ask. "100 pesos " or $10.00 U.S. For one thing there's no such thing as a Mayan dollar and they all seem to use the same sales pitch. And besides the same little masks that they were selling were at the mall for 50 pesos or $5.00 U.S.
P.S. If you see Papa Smurf, let me know. The last time I saw him he was in the company of 6 gorgeous U.K. ladies.
I hope the lady does not mind me showing her picture like this .
I guess she knew what she was doing ,going down the Pyramid like this .
In her case she looks young and athletic.
But for most of us going down this Pyramid would be better to do it in a fashion that will be shown in my next warning of danger tip .
Like Frank Sinatra used to sing
I did it myyyyyyyyy wayyyyyyyyyy."
Running up the side of El Castillo is a silly venture but running down is sheer lunacy. Here the husband found a friend to run down with.
See all those people walking down carefully? That is how you should go down, it is a long way to the bottom should you slip and tumble down.
This tip may be moot in 2004, I heard that they were going to stop letting people walk up El Castillo in 2004 due to wear and tear.
Well, it's not really a danger. But if you have problems with height you should think twice before going up. I really don't like heights but had climbed the Sunpyramid in Teotihuacan and thought this one would be easier. But it wasn't...
It's not so bad to go up, but once you're up there it's a bit worse. It's very steep and the platform on top is not so wide. If you are seriously scared of heights you should at least have someone with you so they can help you get down again. It's a fantastic view from the top, but I didn't see so much up there. I was just wondering how the %(! to get down again, and thought my skeletons would be part of the pyramid in the future. But in the end I managed to get back down again...
If you are going to run up the side of the El Castillo (like in the Reebok commercial except I think that was at the ruins at Tikal), make sure you make it all the way to the top without stopping or the crowd at the bottom will groan audibly and your loving wife will report it to you so that you think you need to do it again (see next tip)
Apparently when I reported that the crowd groaned audibly when he didn't make it all the way the first time, he somehow viewed that as a challenge to do it again, this time up a different side.
But at least he had enough sense not to bite when I said that he should do all four sides :-)
In August, as you can imagine, Chichen Itza was an extremely hot place to be! So if you are visiting, especially at this time of year it would adviseable to bring plenty of sunscreen, insect repellent and we had massive golfing umbrellas to cover us from the sun - this was invaluable as there is no shade, and we took plenty of water with us.
If at all you do get the chance to climb the pyramid, be extra careful, especially climbing down - it is very dangerous. On one side there is a rope going down the middle that can help people. Don't be too proud to come down slowly on all fours!
There is very little shade at the ruins site and at midday it can be VERY hot. Be sure to wear sunscreen, especially if you are pasty white like me, bring some water to drink and if you're especially prone to sunburn not a bad idea to wear a hat.
I guess it goes without saying that the interior of Mexico gets a little hot in the middle of August. When the sun's beating down on you. And you're out in an open field. Yep, that describes my day at Chichen Itza. A great day, but a HOT day.
If you're doing a tour, your guide should give you a bottle of water when you leave the bus. Bottled water is also for sale throughout the ruins. Make sure you dress light - light shirt, pants. And if you're susceptible to sunburn like me, make sure you wear a hat - there's some shade at Chichen Itza, but much of it is in the wide-open sun.
Take care of yourself out there.
I think this is the way to do it ,just like in this picture here ,nice and slow nice and easy
No Rush no Fuzz no Mush or whatever .
DONT FORGET YOUR CAMERA ,YOU NEED TO TAKE PICTURES FROM UP THERE.
Be careful to document every little scrape or spot on your rental car as even in the nice hotels, rental agents will try to charge you for damage to your car that you did not cause. I had this happen to me at the Westin in Cancun and they would not intervene. I had to threaten to call the police.
I had this happen to me while having a rental car filled up near Cancun. The attendant filled the tank then covered up the price area on the pump and tried to charge us dollars by the amount of fuel dispensed (which was considerably more).
After several hours of searching, I found the indisputable evidence photographed here.
All of the "stones" in the stucture are actually made out of a kind of polyethylene/fibreglass compound. When you think about it, who could possibly believe that a bunch of stone age savages created such spectacular buildings with fine lines and straight edges. Now, all of these "stones" have the mark of their origin, but of course they are turned inward so tourists can't see.
They somehow made a mistake with this one. It's near the base of El Castillo, you can see for yourself.
One of the themes that sucks the crowds into Chichen Itza is human sacrifice, which supposedly happened on a massive scale during the Toltec period. The attached photo, from the imaginatively named Platform of Eagles and Jaguars, is a picture your guide will doubtless take you to to show "evidence" of the human sacrifice story.
Apparently (according to the plaque in front of it and your guide) the jaguar (symbolizing the Toltec people) is holding a human heart in its claw and devouring it.
Human heart? What a load of cobblers! Looks more like an advocado to me.
Yes, yes, there is another platform engraved with hundreds of skulls, but we all know that the Chinese built this one.