A fair chunk of the day (about seven hours) was spent on a minibus, travelling to Palenque. There weren’t many breakfast options open for the early departure so I had to make do with a coffee and a bar of chocolate. The Chiapas region is great for both of these. It was one of those chocolate bars with hardly any sugar in, giving it a nice bitter taste. That’s how I’m trying to justify eating a bar of chocolate at this time of the day anyhow!
Part of journey passed through Tabasco. Like Eccles, Frankfurt and Champagne, it’s also a place and not just something you shove down your gob! The journey itself was fine. Most of it was on what can be described as proper roads although it’s fair to say that they do love a speed bump in Mexico.
Our accommodation was just outside the city of Palenque. The hotel is actually located just inside a national park. It’s the only such hotel with the park due to a grandfather (or is it grandparent in the days of feminism) rule, on account of the hotel being around before the national park was a national park, so to speak. Such a setting has its advantages and disadvantages. It certainly looks lovely in photos and the pool is great for the hot and humid climate. However there are bugs all over the place. Mosquitoes (of the bog-standard variety rather than disease-carrying) aren’t too bad but I saw plenty of spiders, lizards and a substantial cockroach took a liking to our shower. The girls next door got hounded out of their room after it became overrun with ants. While eating at the outdoors restaurant something ran across people’s feet under the table. I suppose if we wanted the authentic jungle experience then certainly got it! On dark walk back to the room there was a vociferous humming of grasshoppers and screeching of howler monkeys, supposedly the loudest animal in the jungle. However this was soon drowned out by the sound of the fan in the room.