FROM THE INTRODUCTION: "This is a book about the ancient Maya, but it's also a travel book. Today, travelers who find themselves drifting between Central Mexico and Honduras cannot help but cross the path of the ancient Maya. Some of them come specifically to see the ruins while others, like myself, stumble upon them and find ourselves in thrall to the wonders that are still half-hidden in the jungle. After my first visit, I was hooked. I kept coming back to this mysterious part of the Americas, never quite satisfied that I'd seen enough. In the end, weighed down with journals full of stories, it seemed like it was time to do something constructive with all this accumulated wordage. I'd also like to think that it makes for an interesting story. While my companion and I weren't cutting our way through the jungle with a machete or trying to stay one step ahead of a civil war, as John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood had done in the nineteenth century, we had our share of misadventures. Granted, most of these episodes have to do with monkeys but I don't see how that should detract from our heroic exploits..." Part history, part travelogue, this narrative guides the armchair traveler to more than two dozen ancient Maya sites in Mexico and Central America. The author fills these pages with humor and adventure while musing on one of the world's most mysterious civilizations. This book is an ideal introduction to the world of the ancient Maya and follows in the grand tradition of enlightened travel. A must-read for anyone who feels the allure of lost cities and ancient civilizations.
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