As if finding the ceiling fan from “Apocalypse Now” in Belize wasn’t enough, there was an even more extraordinary discovery made while I was driving through the jungle: Caracol.
This is the name given to a large ancient Maya archaeological site, located in what is now the Cayo District of Belize, approximately 40 kilometres south of Xunantunich and 15 kilometers away from the Macal River.
I’d simply been driving around when I’d noticed a signpost to a tourist spot and, intrigued and with a lull in the exercise, decided to explore. I’m glad I did as it proved a stunning experience.
Numerous movies have made use of its temples sticking out of the jungle canopy, including the “Indiana Jones” series and “Star Wars” (when the Millennium Falcon flies to the rebel base near the end of the film–just before the attack on the Death Star–it passes over the site, I’m pretty sure).
It had been raining and so I wore my waterproof Gortex jacket but as I stomped up the steps of the pyramid I soon had a bead on and next the jacket was wrapped around my waist. At the top, the jungle’s canopy stretched far away, leaving me all alone. Very cool.