On day 1 we hit Balakmu and Chicana. On day 2 we hit Calakmul. And then we hit Becan and Xpujil on the last day. All the sites were good.
Okay as locations go Xpujil or Xpuhil was a remote small town with a couple "good" hotels and restaurants. The typical hotel bed resembles a flat rock. The pillow are not actually pillow but blanket stuffed into pillow cases. I carry my airplane pillow to use on such occasions.
That being said the food was pretty good even if the same everywhere. The menus were virtually the same at two different restaurants. The sites were fantastic.
Balakmu has an opening to enter a pyramid and see some stone carvings. This was really cool to see. This is the reason the site exists. The central carving was 10 feet high and a 4 foot width at the top and 10 foot width at the bottom. The inside the pyramid was really cool to. They are not necessarily solid as they appear. The next site we did was Chicanna. I though this was amazing. This was the first site that had the earth monster and the round protruding carvings. The Earth Monster is a large doorway (the mouth) with eyes, nose, teeth on the top and bottom, with lots of style around it. The curves corners with the protruding noses were very cool. They ended up being more common in the southern Yucatán Peninsula, but this was the first time I saw this style.
And my new 5 month old MacBook Pro crashed yet again.
Calakmul was the reason we came down here. It did not disappoint. It was awesome! It was a large site. It is not as unknown as you would think any longer, but still remote enough that tour buses are not coming. The "road" off the main highway is 90 minutes long and has pothole that can tear your wheel off. We arrived to two cars and left to fifteen. There is a flow to the site taking you through many plazas. Some were small and others large. Everything was climbable. We spent nearly 3 hours here. The best was last as there were two tall pyramids near each other. The second had a small pyramid on top of and behind the main pyramid. By the time I was down my legs were tired. It was worth every step.
Now follow that up Mexico! And so you did with Bacan. Arguably better than Calakmul, but it is a tough call. It was Amazing for sure. Again two fantastic pyramids. Also in the south is the first time I am seeing ropes going up the stairs of the pyramids. It is a nice touch. There were great carvings here and a covered carving behind glass that reminded me of Balakmu. Lastly we hit Xpujil. It was small but had a couple nice carvings on the back of the center tower of the main building. It was a jaguar in excellent condition. The steep stairwell to nowhere was a nice touch too. Although we spent 4 days here we should have done it in two.
Calakmul and Balakmu in one day and Bacan and Xpujil on the next day. Head out to Hochob and Campeche or Kohunlich and Chetumal.
There are many good site away from the tourist hordes in the south.
My photo and blog site for my 2016 travels and beyond
P.S. If you go to the destination page and click the link to locations, I share additional pictures from each trip