Tulum: City of Dawn
Maya Ruins of TULUM
Tulum Archeological Zone, Yucatan Peninsula, Quintana Roo, Mexico
At the northern end of the Tulum complex stands the Temple of the Wind God (Templo del Dios del Viento), shown here. This building had a dual purpose. It served as a lookout post and it was also a storm warning system. The building was constructed with a hole in the roof which produces a whistle when high winds blow. When a hurricane approached the area, the Maya would know to take shelter when they heard the whistle.
This building is associated with the Yucatec Maya deity known as Kukulcán, the feathered serpent. According to Maya mythology: Kukulkan always travels ahead of the rain god Chaac, helping to predict the rains as his tail moves the winds and sweeps the earth clean.
The Walled City of Tulum
Tulum was one of the last cities inhabited and built by the Mayans, it was at its height between the 13th and 15th centuries and managed to survive about 70 years after the Spanish began occupying Mexico.
Tulum is a rarity among Mayan sites being built overlooking the Caribbean. The Mayans refrained from building large structures on the coast for fear that invaders would spot them from the sea. To protect against this, the builders of Tulum originally had plastered and painted the cliffs and walls of the buildings a sky blue.
Tulúm is the Yucatan Mayan word for wall referring to the16 ft tall, 26 ft wide walls that surrounded the city - another rarity for the Maya (only 1 other Maya city is known to have been built with walls). An alternate name for Tulum is ZAMA meaning "City of Dawn" referring to it's orientation toward the sunrise.
See my other shots from Tulum -
Port of Call: Cozumel, Mexico
Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL) "Spirit"
May 27, 2011