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Teotihuacán, San Martín de las Pirámides

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Teotihuacan - Palace of Quetzalpapálotl

The Palace of Quetzalpapálotl has a significant role in Teotihuacán’s ensemble. It was probably the residence of the priests and governors - and holds in its subterranean levels frescos of blood sacrifices related to the cult of the jaguar.

The power of the jaguar comes from representing both sunny days (yellow) and night (its dark spots), but the butterfly (papálotl in Nahuatl Aztec language) was also an appreciated being.

The main patio has beautiful stone columns sustaining the structure. Many birds are represented in such columns. Here the rituals of the Pyramid of the Moon were prepared. [more ]

Teotihuacan - where to sleep

Once in Teotihuacán it may be difficult to find a place to sleep since many buses with tourists fill all the nearby hotels and Inns.

The Hotel Quinto Sol (Fifth Sun – like in the mythology of the Aztecs) is one of the largest and nice ones to consider, but if finding it full don’t give up! Just side by side with it they also run a couple of motel-apartments including a garage for your car and a nice Jacuzzi upstairs. In all comes quite cheap and comfortable!

Another option is the Club Med. and its facilities just adjacent to the archaeological site – normally over-booked in advance, so harder to stay there, but still relatively cheap and with nice food/restaurant/mood! [more ]

Teotihuacan - Avenue of the Dead

The Avenue of the Dead is the main artery of Teotihuacán. It converges into the Pyramid of the Moon in front of which even today people dance and perform seemingly Aztec rituals. In past times this was the path for those that were sacrificed - sometimes in numbers of several hundreds.

On the left side of the avenue facing the Pyramid of the Moon, you have the Palace of Quetzalpapálotl. Some hundreds of meters from the Pyramid of the Moon you reach the Pyramid of the Sun – and its front large square.

On the other extreme of the Avenue of the Dead survived one of the few Temples of Quetzalcoatl that the Spanish did not destroy. [more ]

The land of the Aztecs, Mayas and Olmecs

The Teotihuacan pyramids are the second full largest of such structures in the world, after those in Egypt. The Pyramid of the Moon and the Pyramid of the Sun represent all the mysticism of the Aztecs, although Teotihuacan itself was probably built by the Totonacs, later semi-destroyed by the Toltecs, inhabited by Mayas and Zapotecs, etc., and abandoned much before the Aztecs came to find and make Teotihuacan their own: “The place where gods are born.”

I drove from San Francisco, California, by car, before reaching the vicinity of Mexico City – where Teotihuacan is located 50 km to the northeast. [more ]

Magnificent Aztec Empire murals, pyramids and temples just 40km from Mexico City

This magnificent giant ancient Aztec city, Teotihuacan, was just 40 kilometers from Ciudad de Mexico and was an incredible large complex with many structures, temples and the superb Pyramids of the Moon and Pyramid of the Sun. This last one was 75 metres high. If you visited some ancient sites before, this one is the largest, so you need to be prepared for a lot of walking. My favorite part of this visit was the fantastic mural frescoes. Ceramics and mural creations were amazing remains from the Aztec Empire in Teotihuacan. [more ]

Mexico's Famous Pyramids

Teotihuacán is a large archaeological site that houses the third largest pyramid in the world, the Pyramid of the Sun. It is also home to the Pyramid of the Moon, which is not as large, but impressive nonetheless. The view from both of these pyramids is impressive. To learn more about the site, I recommend a visit to the museum (or you can buy a guide book ahead of time). I even enjoyed the souvenir stands, most especially because they offered crafts different from those I had seen in Southern Mexico.

The day we were here it was very hot. The Avenue of the Dead that runs down the center of the site is quite long and does not afford any shade. I highly recommend bringing sun protection and water, especially for those who are more sensitive to the sun and the heat. Also, take your time, there is a lot to see here and between the heat and the altitude, some people tire rather quickly.

Overall, this is an impressively large site and well worth a visit. [more ]

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1. Pyramid of the Sun 0.08 mi
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