Palenque Mayan site in Chiapas. This is our favorite site and also the favorite sites of our RV group. I think this is a pretty fair conclusion as we seen all the major sites in Mexico This site sits in the Rain forest jungle in the mountains of Chiapas. Chiapas is like no other state in Mexico and really is more like Guatamala than Mexico. A truely beautiful place. These building are huge and in the jungle setting and with many of them on the side of the mountain or or a hill they are spectacular!

The Temple of Inscriptions. We went to the bottom down a stairway and seen the tomb of Pakal II which had a solid one piece stone lid that weighed 5 tons. There was a Jade Mask we seen in Mexico City and other treasures. This is unusual as this is really about the only tomb that was found in the Mayan structures all over Mexico. Here is a link if you want to know more.Link

Another view of Palenque

Azul Agua in the mountains of Chiapas. On the way we seen the Misol Ha falls which you can walk in underneath. The mountain scenery and villages are very nice. This color is due to rock particles in the sun reflecting the turquoise color spectrum much like glacial tilth does.

Azul Agua, some of the guide books suggest safety issues here but that certainly was not the case. One can go swimming here. As we found consistantly in Mexico you can do things you would not ever be able to do in the US and there are no safety concerns. What I mean is you have to be smart enough not to do something stupid. If you do you can get hurt or killed and really basically that will be to bad but little if anything changes. A few places where a number of people were killed some changes eventually took place. This part of Mexico is very hot other than during the winter months so it is a very popular spot to relax on week ends and holidays to stay cool.

An Olmec head, these are from some of the oldest culture in Mexico. These were found about 40 km from the stones they were made from. Wheels were not used but probably they were rolled on posts and loaded on rafts and floated to location and then rolled on posts. The carving and movement and setting them up is remarkable!!! They seem to have an African influence but others say they tried to make themselves look like Jaguars which they worshiped. They were found near La Venta, PEMEX found oil is this area so the whole site was moved and set up again exactly as found in La Venta Park at Villahermosa. Both times we were at Villahermosa the Mosquitoes were very bad. They were terrible in the park so bring lots of bug spray. This was the exception as insects and bugs were not a concern in all of Mexico other than some "NO-SEE-UM's at Batopilas in the bottom of Batopilas Canyon in the Copper Canyon area and a few mosquitoes at the RV park north of Cancun. On the way into Palenque and as we left to go to Villahermosa we seen the largest scale most mechanized farming we had seen in Mexico so far. We also saw lots of cowboys and lots of cattle and it looked like they were doing a good job of producing beef. In Mexico fences consist of many sticks in the ground generally with barb wire. Often these sticks are trees that have been cut and because of the climate they set roots back on and the posts start growing as trees so you see many living fences. I am sorry to say we both were never able to get a picture of this. It was in a moving bus or where it was not possible to pull off the road. However if you go to this URL and click on a thumbnail you will see exactly what I am talking aboutLink

An Ox cart that went through our RV park at Tehuantepec. It was one of many and were actively used by the local farmers. The road from Villahermosa to here was terrible; especially when you turned and headed south. For several miles in one town the oil roads were actually broken up like 6 - 12 inch pieces of flat rock and you drove through this. It was all like this, there was no place to drive where it was better. It is the worst I have ever seen. Tom and Gwen from our group who are from Canada broke an axle on their travel trailer and ruined a tire on this stretch of road. The Green Angles which are hired by the government to patrol the roads and help motorists assisted us in finding them a place to get it welded. They were underway again by about 10 am the next morning, it is amazing what the Mexican mechanics can do with so little!!! The cost for the repair was very, very reasonable. When we left here we got on the Pacific Coastal highway 200 which goes though the mountains or between the mountains and the coast and there is a lot of pretty scenery and windy, hilly roads. It is this way for a good deal of the highway all the way to Acapulco

We took a side trip to Port Angles which is as far south as you can get in Mexico and is on the Pacific coast. We got into some narrow streets and could not get turned around. Believe it or not we finally found a RV park so pulled in, tough turn and our travel partner scraped their awning on the entrance. We had a late lunch of sea food on the beach. A very laid back and out of the way place but believe it or not a few tourists find it! We paid the guy 20 peso's for parking and headed back out and down the road. If you want a warm place in January this would be it and it is laid back, few tourists, definitely Mexican and prices are reasonable. There are no American stores nearby that I know of. You could fly and take a bus in or there is an RV park although you would want a generator as the electricity would not run an A/C although in January you could get by with a fan but by March it starts to get hot! It would make it a lot more fun if you could speak some Spanish.

We stayed at a school yard here lined up by the town mayor. We all gave school supplies to the kids. This was at Puerto Escondido. We found kids waved at us a lot and we often passed out school supplies, ballons, etc. at topes (speed bumps) and also stopped at a school and asked if we could give the kids some school supplies which they gladly interupted classes and let us pass things out. We did not give money to kids, candy as it would give them tooth decay and we did not give to those that begged but gladly gave a tip to those who helped us in anyway such as leading us to where we wanted to go with their bicycle, etc.

This is a scene repeated throughout Mexico; another which we don't have a good picture of is women washing their families clothes in the river and hanging them out to dry. We seen this countless times. This picture is in the Acapulco area.

Sunset from the patio at the hotel Flamingo out over the Pacific. This is a famous place where movies stars such as John Wayne stayed when they made movies here. I have never been any place where the sunsets are more beautiful than Acapulco. It is just amazing to see the sun drop into the ocean. As it makes it final decent into the water you can literally see it moving.

A beach party at Pie da la Cuesta northwest of Acapulco at our RV park. It is considered to be one of the greatest places in the world for sunsets. We had a singer and it was a great time. It does not get any better than this!

Another Acapulco sunset but they just don't get any better than this so I have put up several

Yet another sunset at Acapulco

The bay at Acapulco one of the deepest in the world. Since the first days of the Spanards it was a trading port with the Phillapines.

One of many masks at the private Mask Museum in Acapulco. Masks are found in the early Mexican culture and still are very much a part of carnavals and parades and celebrations. There were hundreds of masks in this museum.

Another shot of the bay at Acapulco. It is also very spectacular at night with all the lights.

A picture taken from our cruise boat of the cliff where the famous Acapulco Divers do their dives. This is west of the bay and right on the Pacific. There is also an open theatre near by where you can listen to the thunder of the surf and watch the sun set. In Acapulco downtown you don't see the sun set most places because of the mountains to the west.

And yet another fabulous Acapulco sunset.

Edith served a pancake and orange juice breakfast for everyone of our caravan at our RV park at Acapulco. Once she got it rolling a number pitched in and we had sausage and bacon as well as coffee and tea. It was a big hit with virtually everybody showing up and was mentioned as a highlight by a number of people on our last night when people were asked to mention highlights.

Another shot of the breakfast on the Pacific. It ended with whales putting on a show right off the beach. Some that left for our next stop a bit later the next day seen even a better show of whales and dolphins

Oxen at a small town near our RV park close to Cuernavaca the city of eternal spring.

This is Taxco with an even better climate than Cuernavaca. It is a famous colonial city of silver mining up in the mountains. The streets are narrow, things are the same as they have been for centuries as people who fix things have to get it approved so things are not changed.

There must be more than a 100 silver shops in town, I mean that these shops only sold silver. There were of course many other shops and a very unusual market that seemed to almost be underground between buildings and in allesy. It was very unique. It appeared people came here from all over the world to buy things here, many of which would be sold again. This silver serving set sold for about $10,000 but they would deal. There were many items that were reasonable but I would not say low priced

This church is fantastic in and out! It was built by the person who discovered the big silver mine here. If interested you can read about it at this URL Link There is a good picture here that is better than mine as they were working on the church and much of it was covered when we were there.

This shows how so many things are still done in Mexico. We seen crews of 20 people cutting the road ditches with machettes. Every place you went it was mostly hand labor other than road and bridge construction had reasonable mechanization and some construction in bigger towns. Many small town construction projects of whole building, multi-story were build a wheel barrow at a time. We seem some fairly modern farming here with irrigation and some dairy herds and beef feed lots. There are a lot of people to feed in Mexico City so it makes sense

This cave is on a par with Calesbad and is fantastic. It is called Grutas de Cacahuamilpa. For more and better pictures of this cave go to this URL and note there are more thumbnails to click onlink

This is a church built on top of the pyramid in Cholula. Cortex regularly destroyed these and built churches on them or took the rock and built churches on top of the ruins. He vowed to build a church for every day in the year here but in reality there are about 40 which is amazing and that is why Cholula is called the city of churches.

The beautiful interior of the Santa Maria church in Cholula. Many say it is one of the most beaufiful in the world. Several on our tour who have been all over Europe say they have seen nothing there that equals this.

Crowded streets in Puebla. The most crowded I have every been on. There were lots of upscale shopping places and people appeared to be doing well here. There is a large Volkswagon plant here and people from Mexico City come here like they do to Cuernavaca to get away from the city.

This is the famous Talavera pottery of Puebla. It is very durable and can not be scratched. It is very difficult to break and for this quality the price was right. This picture is not the greatest so to find out more about this pottery go to this link. The pictures are thumbnails toward the bottomLINK

This area of three churches is the most visited church in Mexico and the second most in the world. It is The Shrine of our Lady Guadalupe. This is a picture of the old church and shows it sinking and tilting as Mexico City is built in a drained lake and is also very subject to earthquakes. The modern church is right beside it and holds 10,000 people. December 12th is the day that celebrates Lady Guadalupe and people come from all over Mexico and the world on that day. The story is quite long so here is a link that tells itLINK

Here is the famous and sacred potrait of Our Lady Guadalupe. It is viewed in the new church and the pope has visited here

The famous hairless Mexican dogs. These are very expensive.

We seen these all over Mexico. These looms made blankets and rugs. Mexico City is the largest city in the world and you hear how dangerous it is. That is definitely over-rated as most places are fine. The houses go up the side hills and there are poor sections and bad parts of town. The pollution was not nearly as bad as people make it out to be.

This is the Pyramid of the Sun at Teotihuacan east of Mexico City. You can see how huge it is. There is also the pyramid of the Moon which appears to be as large but actually is smaller but appears larger than it is because it is at a higher elevation.

A reproduction of the best ancient Mayan painting in Mexico which are found at Bonampak. These reproductions are at the National Archeology Museum in Mexico City. They are head and shoulder above anything else of what you can see of ancient Mayan painting anywhere.

Scenery as we left Teotihuacan and headed north for San Miguel De Allende. A lot of the area around Mexico City and to the north is like this. The amazing thing is that as we left the warm temperatures of the Pacific Coast, as it was March, we climbed to 6000 feet at Cuernavaca and stayed at a high elevation all the way north to Saltillo so we had pleasant day time temperatures and often the low 40's at night.

A parade in San Miguel de Allende. This was most of our groups favorite town. It is colonial in nature, very much in its original state and many beautiful buildings and definitely has a charm and friendliness about it. I have heard about it a long time and although things are always different than you picture them it was my favorite city with Acapulco running a close second for beautful scenes but Acapulco is touristy and not Mexico where San Miguel de Allende is Colonial Mexico even though there are a lot of people from around the world who have made it home It has a great climate and little air pollution.

The market in San Miguel de Allende

A statue of El Pipila a miner who was a hero of the independence movement in Mexico. If you want to know more check out Link

A narrow street in San Miguel de Allende

This is the famous colonial town and center of the independence movement Guanajuato. It was also one of my favorites and many consider it their favorite town in Mexico. It depends on what you like but either San Miguel de Allende or Guanajuato are great colonial towns little changed in building from its old colonial past. There are probably fewer foreign people who have moved here to live so for some they see this as being more Mexican than San Miguel de Allende It is one of the toughest names to pronounce other than some of the Indian names. If you sound it out like juan a hwa to using an ah sound for the "A's" you are close. Remember that ll in Spanish is a "Y" sound and "E" is an "A" sound like in able. Therefore it is a yen day

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