I am now in Palenque and went to the Mayan ruins, by the same name, today. I took a jungle tour from a young man named Fausto. It was very interesting and we explored some of the approximately 90% of Palenque that has not been excavated. I saw my first wild monkey....actually two howler monkeys having breakfast.
Palenque was a Maya city state in southern Mexico that flourished in the 7th century. The Palenque ruins date back to 226 BC to its fall around 1123 AD. After its decline, it was absorbed into the jungle, which is made up of cedar, mahogany, and sapodilla trees, but has been excavated and restored and is now a famous archaeological site attracting thousands of visitors. It is located near the Usumacinta River in the Mexican state of Chiapas.
Palenque is a medium-sized site, much smaller than such huge sites as Tikal or Copán, but it contains some of the finest architecture, sculpture, roof comb and bas-relief carvings that the Mayas produced. Much of the history of Palenque has been reconstructed from reading the hieroglyphic inscriptions on the many monuments; historians now have a long sequence of the ruling dynasty of Palenque in the 5th century and extensive knowledge of the city-state's rivalry with other states such as Calakmul and Toniná. The most famous ruler of Palenque was Pacal the Great whose tomb has been found and excavated in the Temple of the Inscriptions.
By 2005, the discovered area covered up to 2.5 km² (1 sq mi), but it is estimated that less than 10% of the total area of the city is explored, leaving more than a thousand structures still covered by jungle.
This is my guide Fausto. This city was abandoned and given back to the jungle 1300 years.
These howler monkeys were through with their breakfast and resting....these were the best shots I was able to get of them. Fausto told me that there were twelve monkeys in this group.