Ruins next to the beach in Tulum, Mexico

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The ruins at Tulum is one of my favourite archaeological sites. One reason for this is the fact that you can see the whole site in a little more than an hour, unlike most sites where you need a lot of time to explore all the hidden treasures.

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We were in Tulum during July, a hot a humid time to be there. We rented bicycles and cycled to the ruins early in the morning, to avoid walking around in the heat of the afternoon.

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The Tulum ruins are unique because it is located next to the beach and overlooks the ocean. One can imagine Mayan royalty sitting proudly inside their walled city, looking out over their kingdom and the Caribbean.

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Tulum was one of the last Mayan cities built and it was still inhabited when the Spaniards arrived in Mexico in the 15th century. The Mayan city lasted for 70 years after the Spanish started occupying Mexico.

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The structures are built out of grey stone. Below the God of winds temple can be seen looking out over the ocean:

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We spotted these beautiful flowers around the ruins:

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Palm trees on an archaeological site!

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Here I’m standing in front of the Great Palace:

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There were many lizards all around and on top of the structures. Dirk nearly stepped on the biggest lizard of all!

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I tried to warn him, but was so shocked at the size of this creature that I didn’t communicate clearly. Luckily, Dirk didn’t step on this guy, and nobody got hurt.

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You can go down to the brach for a quick swim:

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From this side the seaweed on the beach is visible.

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We had lots of fun trying to spot lizards in between the plants.

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We took this picture just before we exited the site:

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Here I am pointing at the lizard on the wall:

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As we left the site before 11am, tourists stood in long lines waiting to enter; we were lucky to have missed the rush.

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