Cenotes Sagrados y Ruinas Mayas

Authored by:
Jennifer Tubbs

Jennifer Tubbs

Our weekend adventure in Valladolid started off with a bang - the Light Show at Chichén Itzá. An ancient temple illuminated in the night sky told the history of the Mayan people from the pre-Hispanic era to colonialism all the way up until the modern day. Students practiced their Spanish comprehension skills as a narrator detailed the origins of the Mayan people - the sacred cenotes, or sinkholes. In fact, Chichén Itzá derives its name from these holy aquifers. “Chichén Itzá” roughly translates as “people of the cenotes.”

Fortunately, our students didn’t have to sacrifice themselves to Chaac, the Mayan water god, for a chance to swim in one of the nearby cenotes. The ancient Mayans weren’t so lucky! During times of drought, the devout went on pilgrimages to Chaac’s abode to make the ultimate sacrifice - their lives in exchange for rain. 

On our last day away from Mérida, we stopped in Izamal, the yellow city, to explore the plaza, mercado, and historic church. While some were taking in the scenery and enjoying shaved ice, others felt up to a little more exercise. We climbed a Mayan temple and were rewarded with a history lesson from our guide at the top.

Returning to Mérida, we ate lunch at el Museo de la gastronomía, where we got a hands-on lesson of how the traditional Yucatecan dish cochinita pipil is prepared. 

Students are rested and ready for another week full of service!

Saludos,

Jenn

 

 

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