Mexico/Yucatan: Chichen Itza (Revisited)
Chichen Itza is one of the 7 new world wonders and deservingly so. The classical Mayan pyramid has graced a lot of travel magazines and brochures as a “must-see-before-you-die” type of destination, and 1.5 million people visit every year. Chichen Itza was one of the largest Mayan cities in history and a center of the Mayan empire. Chichen Itza was founded around 450AD. and reached its highest point around 700AD. By the time the Spanish arrived in 1533, the site was completely abandoned. By the 19th century, it became the site of the largest archaeological works in the world, covering over 8 sq km (much of it is still unexcavated). The main attraction is the Pyramid of Kukulkan, rising 30m high, this four-sided includes nine-tier terracing and four stairways, one on each side, symbolizing the nine heavens and the four points of the compass. Major other points of interest are the Great Ball Court, the Skull Platform, Temple of the Warriors, Temple of the Carved Columns, Thousand Columns, and many more. It’s all fantastic except for the vast armies of souvenirs sellers everywhere, there’s more of them then actual visitors, absolutely aggressive and annoying.