Making up for yesterday's "lost" day, I grabbed a 7.30 bus this morning to La Entrada, the crossroads town in northwestern Honduras where I needed to catch a transfer to Copan Ruinas. I was checked into my hotel before noon and at the impressive Mayan archaeological site by 1.00 p.m.
This was my second trip to Copan following an August 2008 visit during which I had no camera. Today's visit was mainly for the purpose of getting photos--in that I can report I succeeded beyond expectations.
Click the following link for a very interesting website about Copan Ruinas:
Apart from the thrill of again seeing this amazingly well preserved site, I can report the oddity of traveling from one of the least touristed areas of Honduras--the Ruta de Lenca which I've just traversed from Perquin to Santa Rosa--to one of the top tourist destinations in Central America.
The village of Copan Ruinas, which I remember vaguely as a quiet, hot, dusty, and somewhat unkempt municipality now sparkles and shines vibrant with international restaurants, coffee shops and bars, a slew of hotels, and more tourists than I've seen anywhere apart from Granada, Nicaragua. These tourists are more affluent and of a wider age range than the college age backpackers I encountered in Nicaragua. The French seem particularly well represented here.
Readers of this blog have probably noticed that I'm not a huge fan of spending big bucks for the "touristy type" tours no matter where I go. Anything that costs more than $20 gets a long hard look before I decide to spend.
But the $15 admission charge to these 1600 year old ruins were definitely worth the splurge for me--even for a second time. From its Classic heyday circa 426-900 C.E. this important Mayan settlement was second only to the even more remarkable--and larger--ruins in Tikal, Guatemala.
Now that I'm only seven miles from the Guatemalan border, and a six hour microbus ride to Antigua, and since my return mission to Copan is basically complete, it's feasible for me to catch tomorrow's noon micro out of here and be in Antigua tomorrow night. From there the famous market town of Chichicastenago is only a couple hours away and Guatemala City's airport is only an hour or so. I will be very happy to have most of these arduous bus trips behind me.
A note about my photos: my readers understand, as I do, that a cutting edge 21st century blog needs photos along with other up-to-date bells and whistles. I appreciate my readers for their patience in bearing with me until I can return to the States, download the software, and upload some of my hundreds of photos. I hope to have an excellent slide show on this blog by August 1.