From seat 7A, I look down to see miles of dense rain forest blanketing the ground below me. I’m 10,000 feet above the Mexican state of Chiapas, coming in for a landing at Palenque, where an ancient Mesoamerican city flourished for five centuries, until its Mayan inhabitants mysteriously abandoned it, leaving their temples, homes and palaces to be reclaimed by the encroaching forest, not to be rediscovered for nearly 900 years.
Summer is winding down, and autumn soon will be upon us, with kids back to school and people who take their vacations in summer back to work. In the Caribbean, that means good deals in the offing as the islands vie to attract travelers in the off-season.
Quick trips: Mexico
How integral is food to Mexico City’s culture? My taxi driver from the airport offered me a plate of her chicken tinga tacos. From a covered platter she kept inside her cab. She didn’t try to sell them to me. She wanted to give them to me, to welcome me with a taste of her native Mexico City. And maybe to show off a little for the food writer.
A pint-sized dish of cevichocho, served on the street in Otavalo, sparked an aha! moment that caught me unawares.
There’s a disarming glow along the walls of the Atlantis resort casino, and it might mystify even the most veteran gamblers as they weigh the merits of splitting those sixes against the dealer’s five.
Legend has it that Sir Francis Drake regularly anchored in Magens Bay with its spectacular white-sand beaches.
Music, mountains and the beach give the Marvelous City its unique style.
Tranquil bays, untrammeled forests, and beaches where my footprints are the first of the day — the Caribbean I treasure is one of solitude and escape.
The water taxi revved its outboard motors, spitting the scent of gasoline into the tropical air, then took off, headed from Belize City to San Pedro Town on Ambergris Caye, 35 miles away. Onboard, airplane-weary tourists, commuting locals, boxes destined for island businesses — and my wife and I with our luggage — crowded on wooden benches for the hour-plus trip.
“Care to kiss the ground?”
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