Cozumel (land of the swallows) is the largest of the Mexican islands and lies 12 miles off the NE coast of Mexico. Extremely important in Mayan mythology as the eastern most Mayan site, it is the sanctuary to the rising sun. It is also an important shrine to his consort, Ixchel, moon goddess and patroness of birth, medicine and weaving. Other than all it's mythology, Cozumel, is a delightful place to visit with it's warm temperatures, lovely sandy beaches and great reef diving.
Cozumel is a small island only about 28 miles long and 11 miles across, but too large to see on foot. So, we rented one of the old, stripped down VW bugs, so stripped down it was unsafe, open to the air but a whole lot of fun. Both our friend and ourselves had owned VWs in our youth so this was like making contact with our past.
And then we were off!! like a heard of turtles!! Pushing the gas pedal to the floor! Our top speed was 55 miles an hour and it sounded as if the jalopy would fly apart. Our hair was blowing in the wind and we were having a ball.
We had lunch while we watched the waves wash over the beach and then later enjoyed a delicious coconut drink while the waves pounded the rocks.
More than 30 Mayan sites are found on the island. El Cedral is the oldest with only a tower-like structure left of it. A small farming community surrounds it now, with a lovely little white church.
San Gervasio is a much larger site and maybe a more important one as the shrine of the goddess of Ixchel was located here. This site is known for its scared sacae -- roads. There are a number of these roads leading from all parts of the island, and they are in relatively good condition.
There are mangroves on the island but they are not easy to get to. It had rained recently so the road was not only bumpy but it had large puddles of water that we had to drive through.
We were rewarded for all our effort because at the end of the road were not only the mangroves but a whole passel of raccoons all begging for food, then eating dry stale tortillas.
Photos and story courtesy of Bob & Wilma.