CHARLOTTE, December 12, 2011— Mention the term “crystal skulls” and it immediately conjures images of mystery and intrigue. Even Indiana Jones got into the act.
For the traveler, the idea is seductive enough to challenge any level of curiosity, and the best place to begin is in
In its own unique way,
For upscale travelers who like to “rough it” by day and luxuriate at night,
The tiny nation on the northeastern coast of
First, English is the native language, mixed with an occasional sampling of Creole. Next, the exchange rate is 2
Most of the better hotel properties in
Outdoorsmen may want to attempt a “grand slam” by fishing for snook, permit, bonefish and tarpon at Machaca Hill Lodge which is situated within the canopy of a rain forest. Be sure to participate in Machaca Hill’s truly unique wake-up call system where a staff member knocks on the door at the appointed time to present you with a pot full of fresh, hot coffee.
Experiential travelers enjoy exploring the ruins at Lamanai Outpost during the day. Then, in the evening, following dinner, spotlight cruises patrol the lagoon searching for nocturnal creatures in their natural surroundings.
At Ka’ana Resort, visitors who are intrigued by the hidden mysteries of the spiritual world can schedule a session with Rosario Panti,
All of which is a circuitous way to return to those devious crystal skulls mentioned earlier. Depending on your source, there are either 12 or 13 crystal skulls which have aroused the curiosity of archaeologists throughout the world. All are believed to originate from
According to accounts, the Lubaantun skull was “discovered” by the adopted daughter of British adventurer, and publicity seeker, F.A. Mitchell-Hedges. While on an expedition with her father, Anna Le Guillon Mitchell-Hedges allegedly unearthed a skull from a collapsed altar as she was exploring the Lubaantun site.
It wasn’t until the 1950s, however, that Mitchell-Hedges even mentioned his daughter’s so-called discovery in a publication. Further investigation shows no documented evidence that Anna was ever in
Later studies proved that Mitchell-Hedges actually purchased his crystal skull at an auction at Sotheby’s in 1943. So why even bother to visit the location of such an obvious hoax?
To begin with, Lubaantun is the largest archaeological ruin in southern
Situated about 26-miles northwest of Punta Gorda on a hilltop surrounded on three sides by two converging streams, Lubaantun is, surprisingly, one of the least visited major Mayan sites. Despite its notoriety for the infamous Mitchell-Hedges skull and a variety of unique characteristics that are atypical of Maya architecture, you may likely be the only visitors at the site if you go.
In the modern Maya language the name means “place of fallen stones”, which is appropriate as earthquakes and tree roots have taken their toll over the centuries. Other than the removal of underbrush to clear the site, no restoration work as been done at Lubaantun.
As a result, the lush rainforest setting combined with structures featuring unusual rounded corners and the rare black slate and limestone bricks that were carved to fit together without mortar are, in many ways, a microcosm of
Though the crystal skull was probably a fake, the ruins at Lubaantun, and throughout
Travelers will not be disappointed by the diversity of activities in the natural wonderland that is
Peabod is Bob Taylor, owner of Taylored Media Services in Charlotte, NC, founder of The Magellan Travel Club which creates and escorts customized tours to Switzerland, France and Italy for groups of 12 or more. Inquiries for groups can be made at Peabod@aol.com Taylored media has produced marketing videos for British Rail, Rail Europe, Switzerland Tourism, the Swedish Travel & Tourism Council, the Finnish Tourist Board, the Swiss Travel System and Japan Railways Group among others. As author of The Century Club book, Peabod is now attempting to travel to 100 countries or more during his lifetime. To date he has visited 69 countries. Suggest someplace new for Bob to visit; if you want to know where he has been, check his list on Facebook. Bob plans to write a sequel to his book when he reaches his goal of 100 countries.
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