a Mayan city in a jungle setting: Tikal
I leave Belize to get in Guatemala, I move away from the Caribbean coast to the picturesque village of Flores. Geographically, Flores is a projection of land in the southern part of the Peten Itza lake and is flanked with an only bridge to reach it. We cross the bridge and we get into another dimension, a cobblestone road encircles the blocks of colourful houses and gives the impression of a tourist sphere besides the city of Santa Elena. A cosy place to cheer us up or to prepare us to receive a visual and emotional slap in the face because this small peninsula is the entrance gate to the archaeological site of Tikal. “Stones and stones again” or “just another Mayan site” will say the blasé tourist, but on the shady paths of the dazzling and enchanting city of Tikal, probably dawned the honour of the most beautiful site of the Mayan empire.
The site is huge and the ways numerous to link the monuments to one another. More than ever, the jungle took over the old edifices of an extinct civilization which formerly built and livened up these stone-made pyramids. To wholly live the Tikal experience, we must set off in search of adventure like a trip we would embark in without any established plan or like a dish we would order without knowing its contents. Return to the roots of a genuine exploration, where elements of surprise invited themselves at each junction of the discovery paths.
In the return bus, the sensory whirl hardly fades that a seed has jut germinated in my head. Another city, even bigger and more mysterious whose main pyramid would cover the totality of the central square of Tikal by itself. Unimaginable to tell oneself that this site keeps on wandering anonymously far from the desires. To reach it, we must dust our trekking shoes and walk for 2 days through the forest to finally marvel at this grandiose city known as El Mirador. Unfortunately, it's not the good season to go there but this sort of adventure attracts me and just arrived, I have already a good reason to come back to Guatemala.