Orange Walk, Belize
Today we are setting out for a day at the Mayan Ruin Lamanai in the Orange Walk district of Belize. My first Ruins and our trusty cab driver is shuttling us there and we’ll be getting a bus home. About 6 hrs there and back. It’s my first trip to a Mayan Ruin and it’s exciting thought to be able to explore a major city of the Mayan civilization founded in the 16th century BC. We climbed into the cab for the hour or so drive to Orange Walk where we’ll be catching a boat up river for 2 hrs to the interior of Belize to the site. It’s only accessible by boat I’ve been told and looks like quite a trip. It’s not long after we set out I get a glimpse of my first crocodiles sleeping on the bank. The birds and wildlife are everywhere. The boat is zipping along on the New River and the day is sunny and beautiful. We pass by a sugar factory and a passing barge loaded with raw sugar. Even the locals use the river to get from point A to B with bicycle on board. We slow down to feed the resident tour monkey, I suspect he waits every day for his free bananas! Arriving at the site and gaining entrance we meet our guide and he takes us off for a Chicken, rice and beans lunch which is part of the tour package then it’s off to explore the park. It’s not crowded. There is a quiet silence with echoing howler monkeys in the background. The trees are huge and we are told these huge trunks are what traditional Maya canoes are carved out of. The buildings are inspiring surrounded by lush jungle. I am wondering how something so beautiful was built so long ago and still standing. Amazing engineering and ability. The High Temple is 33 meters tall and extends above the forest canopy to see coming dangers of that day. The climb up the steep narrow stairs seemed easy going up but seeing your demise coming down put a fear into many. There have been some tragic accidents here thus the rope to hang on to. Sitting at the top looking over the jungle there was a surreal feeling knowing you are looking over the jungle that people did standing here 3500 yrs ago and the view is far and wide. After making my way down and spending a few more hrs wandering around it’s time to load up the boat and head back to Orange Walk and catch the last bus to Corozal. The whole day cost about $80 US but I have seen a wide variety of prices for this tour. It has been another great day exploring new things in life. What adventure awaits me next?