January 8-9-10-11, 2015
"Mr. Cernikovsky's Friends of Archaeology" January 2015
... a trip by private plane to Yaxchilan, Bonampak, Palenque and "La Venta" in Villahermosa, Tabasco
This is the trip. Day One, January 8 ... we fly from Guatemala, with a stop in Tapachula, to a brand new airport in Palenque. Day Two, January 9, a bus trip to Corozal, high speed boats on the Usumacinta River to Yaxchilan. Lunch in Corozal and a buses to Bonampak. Day 3, January 10, take it easy in the hotel and afternoon visit to Palenque. Day 4, January 11, two buses to Villahermosa, visit of the Olmec heads in "La Venta" in Villahermosa and a flight back to Guatemala in the afternoon. Buses back to Antigua.
For your reference, I have indicated the locations of the 2011 trip to El Mirador, 2012 to Tak'alik Ab'aj and 2013 to La Corona.
Thursday January 8
10:00 - Departure for Tapachula
The usual $33 Guatemala departure tax that is
included in your routine flights out of Guatemala, is also included in the
cost of our trip, as is the $44 Mexican departure tax when we return.
11:00 E.T.A. Tapachula. Get from the plane, pass Migracion. Get back on the plane to Palenque.
14:00 - Arrived in Palenque. Two buses from Palenque airport to the Chan-Kah Resort Village. A quick check-in and a table in reception to pick up a sandwich and a beer, water or soda as you go to your cottage. You can relax in your cottage, swim in the beautiful pools, or use the hotel's restaurant and bar during the afternoon. The quicker our flight is, the more time to relax.
Your room has A/C, TV, a ceiling fan, an outdoor patio, and is set in the
jungle. But modern conveniences, such as the bar and restaurant, are
close by. There is room service and poolside service.
When we get back home, please go to sleep ... tomorrow is a big day!
Friday January 9
06:00 - coffee by the Reception
06:30 - Two buses leave from the reception area. This will be a long day.
06:40 - Sunrise
08:00 - Breakfast in Restaurante Valle Escondido in the Chiapas jungle, heading toward the Guatemalan border. This is drug-trafficking country, but on the Mexican side, from personal experience, I know it is heavily policed to protect the tourists. All totally safe. Mexico impresses me how they do things.
09:30 - Corozal, Mexico-Guatemala border. This is the wild-wild West all over again. Smuggling, drugs, illegal emigrants, and affluent tourists all there at the same, but do NOT blend together. The tourists always come out safe and never notice anything.
We get three high-speed boats to take us down the Usumacinta river, Mexico on the left, Guatemala on the right, to Yaxchilan. A walking tour of Yaxchilan, a splendid late-classic Maya site, where the river makes an almost 360 bend, the land sticking into Guatemala, but Mexican territory.
We then get the boats for the return trip, slower up the stream.
14:00 - lunch in Corozal, with beers, sodas, water, etc.
15:00 - buses leave for Bonampak
Bonampak is one of the most amazing Maya sites, it was a dependency of Yaxchilan, but the fame it has earned comes from the frescoes, some of which we will see (in small groups). In addition to being amongst the most well-preserved Maya murals, the Bonampak murals are noteworthy for debunking early assumptions that the Maya were a peaceful culture of mystics, as the murals clearly depict war and human sacrifice.
19:30-- return to our hotel, late, but dinner will be waiting for us.
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Saturday January 10
08:00 breakfast at the hotel
RELAXATE! Morning. You can relax in your room or swim in the pools.
But, I have also arranged a bus to leave the hotel (16-18 seats) at 9 and 9:30 and 10 a.m. into the town of Palenque. It will go to "Che", no, not Che Guevara, but the new local branch of the Chedraui supermarkets, in case you want to sightsee, shop, buy Mexican things (it has ATM machines). The bus will return at 10:30 and 11:00 and 11:30.
12:00 - a simple lunch at the hotel
13:30 - two buses leave from the reception for Palenque, only one kilometer away. We will visit the Palenque museum first, with Tomas Barrientos. Then the "ruinas de Palenque". These are mobbed by crowds in the morning. In later afternoon, it gets cooler and the crowds go away. We will probably pay for staying past the closing hour of 5 p.m. to have the site pretty much to ourselves.
17:50 - sunset
18:30 - two buses leave Palenque for Restaurante La Selva. A big Mexican meal and Mariachis! Viva Mexico! Enjoy!
Sunday January 11
07:30 - breakfast at the hotel
08:00 - check-out.
09:00 - Two buses will take us to Villahermosa, 150 kilometers away.
11:00 - "La Venta" Park, Villahermosa. This is where the vast majority of the Olmec treasures, found as oil-drilling reached the remote state of Tabasco in the 1920's and 30's are now located. We visited the actual site of La Venta, north of Villahermosa, last April, but it is empty, all the treasures are either in Mexico City or in Villahermosa.
A presentation by Tomas Barrientos, in an air-conditioned room they have in the park. It will be a little crowded, some people may have to stand. A guided walk around the site.
14:00 - outdoor pic-nic lunch in the park.
15:00 - two buses to the Villahermosa airport.
16:00 - leave for Guatemala, E.T.A. 17:30
Buses will wait to take you to Antigua and drop you off at your house. V.I.P. service!
Amazing Olmec items al "La Venta" ... April 2014
Why should you join the tour ?
Third, this is "Archaeology in Luxury", with a nice hotel and meals and drinks in nice restaurants.
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||bus from Antigua to La Aurora airport||private flight from Guatemala to Palenque||35 lbs. luggage allowance. Guatemala departure tax of $33 is included||bus transfer Palenque airport - hotel Chan Kah||3 nights in Hotel Chan Kah in either single or double room||presentation by Tomas Barrientos of UVG the evening or arrival, with a bar outside the conference room||dinner the night of arrival in Hotel Nututun, with 2 drinks, beer, wine, sodas, water. You are responsible for any additional drinks. Bus transfers||second day, all day trip in two buses, breakfast along the way, to Corozal, transfer to boats on the Usumacinta River, tour of Yaxchilan, lunch in Corozal, tour of Bonampak. Entrance fees and guides.||Dinner at the hotel, with 2 drinks, beer, wine, sodas, water. You are responsible for any additional drinks.||third day, breakfast at the hotel.||Buses between the hotel and Chedraui supermarket in the town of Palenque||buffet lunch at the hotel, with 2 drinks, beer, wine, sodas, water. You are responsible for any additional drinks.||tour of Palenque Museum and the Palenque ruins, entrance fees included.||dinner at La Selva, a nice Mexican restaurant, with mariachis, with 2 drinks, beer, wine, sodas, water. You are responsible for any additional drinks. Bus transfers||fourth day, breakfast at the hotel||Bus transfer to Villahermosa, 150 kilometers||Visit to "La Venta" park. Presentation by Tomas Barrientos about the Olmec history and culture. Tour of the park. Entrance fee included.||Pic nic lunch in the park||Bus transfer to Villahermosa airport. Private flight back to Guatemala's La Aurora. Mexico $44 departure tax included.||bus transfer to Antigua, which will drop you off at your home||a fun, interesting trip, totally unique in the company of Guatemala's top archaeologists and lots of friends go back to the top ^|
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