11.04.2016 - 12.04.2016 32 °C
Monday 11th April - Copan (Honduras)
We left very early (4am !) for the long drive to cross the boarder into Honduras,
It wasn't so much the distance it was more that we had to get through Guatemala City before the crazy rush hour traffic brings it to a standstill,
even driving through at 4.30am it was still starting to build up.
(So far in Guatemala we had experienced first hand, both a man and a dog getting killed by traffic,
so it was nice to get this behind us).
We passed through the border checkpoint really fast and arrived at Copan around lunchtime,
had a quick orientation walk around the "town" which was very small, with a main Plaza and all roads leading off went up very steep hills,
one of which was to our hotel !
Soon after we went to the Copan Ruins albeit via a dodgy mode of transport,
we'd arranged for a local guide to meet us and he turned up at the hotel in his pickup truck !
So 11 of us got In the back of the truck, plus 2 more in the cab !
Luckily it was only a mile or so away. We Visited the Copan Ruins, the most famous site in Honduras and
yet again when we arrived there was nobody there and we had it all to ourselves !
Walking through the jungle paths we spotted lots of giant Macaws sat in trees and flying around very close to us, even landing on the statues.
Copan is different to the other Mayan sites in that there are more Glyphs and Stale's around rather than pyramids, plus we got to go down inside 2 of the tunnels that the archeologists had dug in order to explore the hidden tombs below the main structures.
Given we were up at 3am we decided leave the site and return again tomorrow to visit the museum.
The weather was now just cooling down from around 32c,
So walked back to the hotel rather than get a tuc-tuc and went to try some local Honduras food.
Tuesday 12th April - Copan
After a good nights sleep, apart from the bloody Cockerel crowing from 3am onwards !
we set off to walk back to the Copan Ruins again to visit a live
Archeological excavation that was taking place close by and then onto the sites museum where a lot of the original artefacts are kept.
It's hard to believe, but Copan like Tikal has only 10-20% of the site excavated !
With both sites covering a vast geographical area where thousands of people lived when these were thriving Mayan centres.
When the civilisation ended, which most believe was due to droughts and the change of faith towards their leaders (gods),
the sites were abandoned and the jungle took over consuming it for centuries.
It's amazing when you walk round the jungle trails you see lots of large pyramid type hills covered in grass with trees sprouting out of them,
all of which contain a hidden temple or structure yet to be revealed,
It's like going back in time or being in part of an Indiana Jones Movie !
Las Sepulturas is the site where current excavations are taking place, they discovered this about a year ago and
estimate they will be there for another 5 years.
We couldn't take photos of the work but we then went to another area of Las Sepultures that was completed and accessed via jungle tracks.
We walked round the 2km trail all on our own (again) and then went onto the Copan Museum.
The entrance is via a Serpents mouth, which leads you into a large auditorium with the actual artefacts on display, well worth the visit.
We headed back to the Hotel (clocking up about 10km by now) and entered the town once again, when passing by the local market we suddenly spotted a pen of multi coloured baby chicks ? ! (Chickens).
It took us a few minutes to actually comprehend what we were seeing, they were coloured Pink, Orange, Blue and Green etc.
Sadly however we found out later what it was all about - the baby chicks had being dyed and were for sale as pets !
(Even worse is that many of them die during this barbaric process), apparently the children want different coloured ones as pets,
Very sad but true.
After a Burrito Brunch we boarded our bus for the long drive to the border to cross into El Salvador.
However even though we were going to El Salvador, we first went back into Guatemala, headed south and
then crossed into El Salvador as it was actually quicker and a lot safer !
Several border crossings and hundreds of Km's later we arrived in Suchitoto, quickly checked into our hotel,
Then went out to try some El Salvadorian Street food, the most popular are Pupusans,
Which is a tortilla either made with Corn or Rice and then filled with various ingredients, a popular and the one we had was
Frijoles can Queso (Refried Beans n Cheese) served straight from the pan, their very hot and gorgeous !