Mundo Maya Blog
About this blog
Travelers to Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, and Honduras in 2012 can expect a yearlong celebration of Maya culture, past and present—and Moon Maya 2012 author Joshua Berman is blogging about all of it.
- Maya 2012: A Round-up of Celebrations in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize & Honduras
- Reporting for National Geographic on Maya winter solstice in Belize
- Maya calendar cycle celebrated throughout Central America
- Feliz B'aktun! The New Dawn is Here: The First Sunrise in Caracol, Belize
- Maya Calendar 101: What Does “December 21, 2012” Really Mean?
- Gifts for Mayaphiles
- Books on the Maya: Suggested Reading for 2012
- Izapa Sunrise Story by Mary Jo McConahay
- Tranquilo Radio Tour 2012: Seven hours straight of talking about travel
- Tune in this Wednesday! Maya 2012 author Josh Berman on a radio show near you!
- End Maya-Aztec calendar confusion now!
- Q&A with Maya Experts on Satellite Imagery of Archaeological Sites
- Maya response to 'doomsday' 2012 stories
- Only a couple of rooms left for "The Great Return: Copan 2012" tour of a lifetime!
- 5 Questions about Traveling in the Mundo Maya for Rafael Garcia
2012: The Time to Travel to the Mundo Maya
December 21, 2012 is a big date. This is the day Mesoamerican astronomers inscribed on a stone tablet over a thousand years ago, at a site in southern Mexico. In the Maya Long Count Calendar, the date is called “13 b’aktun,” and refers to the end of a measured period of 5,125 years. Some say this cycle will click over, triggering a new spiritual era. Others say nothing will happen; and some associate the date with the apocalypse to help them sell movies, gas masks, and elaborate bunker designs.
No matter what you think will happen—there’s no denying that it’s an auspicious time to travel to an already alluring corner of the North American continent. This is why I decided to embark on writing my new book, Moon Maya 2012: A Guide to Celebrations in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize & Honduras, set to be released next month.
I first realized how close we were to 13 b’aktun at a Christmas party in Belize last year. I was in the Cayo District researching the ninth edition of my Moon Belize guidebook when I asked Lucy Fleming, founder of The Lodge at Chaa Creek, “So what do you have planned for 2012?” She said they planned to turn the famous Central American jungle lodge into an ancient Maya village in which guests could participate, while exploring local archaeological sites, attending ceremonies, and witnessing the end and beginning of an era. Her response made me wonder what others in the Mundo Maya countries were planning.
I started calling friends in Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and southern Mexico, and found that people were indeed planning 2012 festivals, ceremonies, symposiums, and special tours—many centered on teaching travelers about Maya culture, both ancient and modern. I also found places in each of these countries where travelers can stay in rural Maya communities in guesthouses, or even spas; and found primitive homestay opportunities and small community-based tourism efforts throughout the Maya area.
Traveling to the Mundo Maya in the year 2012 will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity—so start blocking off some vacation time, and stay tuned to hear more about my discoveries. I’ll be updating this blog weekly over the next few months with information on celebrations, ceremonies, can’t-miss attractions and cultural events all leading up to 2012.