In the Lowlands of Guatemala (July 2014):

Flores, Tikal, Yaxha, Sayaxche, and Aguateca

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Flores and Lake Peten Itza:


The pretty town of Flores is built on a small island on Lake Peten Itza, connected by a causeway to Santa Elena on the southern lakeshore.


The three following photos show Flores from the village of San Miguel located on the lakeshore north of Flores and during a boat ride between the two places.




Sunset over Lake Peten Itza seen from Flores.



North-east shore of Lake Peten Itza (near the village of El Remate).




Templo VI.


Templo I.


View over the forest from Templo II.


Gran Pyramidi in El Moundo Perdido.


Around the Plaza de los Siete Templos.


Templo V rising above the forest foliage (seen from the top of Templo II).


Templo V seen from its base.




Washerwomen along the shore of Lake Salpeten Macanche (a few kilometers east of Lake Peten Itza on the way to Yaxha).



Main pyramid of the North Acropolis of Yaxha seen from the top of the construction known as the ′′Greater Astronomical Complex′′.


Part of the North Acropolis seen from the top of its main pyramid.


Pyramid known as ′′Structure 216′′ in the East Acropolis.


View from the top of ′′Structure 216′′ over Laguna Yaxha.




The town of Sayaxche, located on the road between Flores and Coban, sits on the banks of the Rio Passion. There is no bridge over the river, which must be crossed by ferry or boat. Sayaxche is the gateway to several archeological sites, including Ceibal and Aguateca. It is also possible to ride the Rio Passion down to the Mexican border.





The archeological site of Aguateca is reached from Sayaxche by riding up the Rio Petexbatun (a triburary of the Rio Passion).



The trip to Aguateca eventually traverses the Laguna Petexbatun.


Beyond Laguna Petexbatun the Rio Petexbatun becomes much narrower.


The remains in the city of Aguateca are not as impressive as those of Tikal or Yaxha. But the site is particularly interesting: the city sits on a flat hill defended by vertical cliffs and split by a deep narrow ravine (see map and photos below), a position that may explain its military successes. In addition, Aguateca feels more remote than Tikal or Yaxha.


Inside the ravine.



View from the hill toward the east over swamplands and the south end of Laguna Petexbatun.


Royal family residence.


Casa Comunal.


Templo Dinastico.


Templo Inconcluso.


Monkeys playing above the ruins.


Large ceiba tree.


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