There is something venerable about ancient sites. Mythical places such as the Pyramids at Giza in Egypt or Stonehenge in England have the ability to take one into a timeless realm. Questions pile up in your mind: How could these primitive peoples build works of such magnificence? How did these folks manage to know so much about astronomy? We think our world is at the leading-edge of technology, but did you know that only recently and with the aid of satellites, have we realized how perfectly aligned every stone in these sites is? In fact, we couldn’t build them today with such precision with our most advanced technology.
The Pyramid of Kukulcan (The Castle) at the Chichen Itza complex is awe-inspiring. We chose a cloudy, crisp morning to visit the Mayan site after postponing it for a week. The ADO bus from Cancun to Chichen Itza takes three hours each way and it’s perfect for a day trip. If you leave from Merida, you can take the ADO bus to visit all the Mayan sites in this section of Yucatan: Chichen Itza, Dzibilchaltun, Mayapan and Uxmal. In this case, pictures don’t do justice to this impressive monument from times past. When you’ve traveled far and wide, most worshipping sites start to look like a bunch of old bricks. But there are always exceptions. And Chichen Itza is one of them. The powerful energy left behind by ancient rituals, sacred games and human sacrifices can still be felt. That gives Chichen Itza a high place in any traveler’s bucket list.
If you can plan ahead, do your best to visit at the time of the spring and fall equinoxes, around the 21st of March and September. The Mayans built the Pyramid of Kukulcan as a means of connecting with the Milky Way. And around those two dates every year, the light of the sun filters the energy coming from the galactic center to be delivered to the surface of the planet. When the dawn rises on the equinoxes, the light of the sun illuminates the nine steps of the pyramid and the sculpted feathered serpent comes to life, in what the Mayan pictured as the descent of Kukulcan.
While some visitors stand in awe at the light show, we felt this descent of heavenly energy to the earth deep in our hearts. You just have to go around Yucatan and the Riviera Maya to realize those guys knew where to settle all too well. And they certainly didn’t need to go anywhere to have a real trip!