The journey to Palenque was indeed an experience. It took 5 hours along a windy road with zillions and I mean zillions of speed bumps. For those of us not feeling 100%, it wasn't the greatest experience. I was so cold as my body temperature just kept dropping. In the end I was huddled in my seat against a window with my hoodie up and sunglasses on. My new nickname was 'Una Bomber'!!!! I have little memory of the journey as I passed in and out of consciousness. When I did manage to open my eyes the views were amazing. Long drops, huge forests, and winding roads criss crossing the mountains. It also seemed to be raining a lot so I closed my eyes and drifted off again. I was glad when we arrived - I needed a bed. I stumbled to the hostel, climbed the stairs, dumped my bag and collapsed and slept till the next day. How do you know Jackie is sick? She is quite/ What about really sick? She sleeps during the day. What about really really sick? She actually loses her appetite. Gosh this was serious!
You will be pleased to hear though that sleeping worked and I was at least able to go on the trip the next day. I was so pleased because the trip was to visit the ruins and go swimming in waterfalls.
The Palenque ruins were out of this world. The guide was entertaining, informative and very importantly not insane! The ruins were only discovered in 1952 and the process to reclaim them back from the jungle is a slow process. There is a lot to see but you can see many more still covered by undergrowth with trees growing on top. The buildings that had been cleared had wonderful carvings on them and in some areas the remnants of the vibrant colours they would once have been covered in. One of the carvings was of a rabbit skull - you could tell because the teeth were massive. There were plenty of buildings to climb up or through. It was a real adventure. We also walked through the jungle and the guys had a go at swinging on the vines. Tarzan eat your heart out. The Museo here was one of the best. Some of the artefacts they have discovered here really are unique. They also had the huge sarcophagus which one of the key rulers had been buried in. It was an amazing tomb - beautifully carved. How they moved it I don't know because not only did it look heavy but it wa sthe size of a small van!
Then we went to the waterfalls. We visited Musol Ha and Agua Azul. Musol Ha was a large pool at the bottom of a huge waterfall. It was so beautiful. It is where they filmed the Predator movie - luckily no alien beings killing people while we were there!!! The second waterfall was actually a series of several layers flowing down many tiers - a bit like a wedding cake. Here we walked to the top of the cake …. oops sorry …. levels and swam in a pool at the top. The guys impressed us with their leaps from the swing rope and as is always the case they became more impressive as the guys had to beat the last one! Gino won I think with a flying black flip turning into a perfect frontal dive. The guy is seriously part monkey.