At 11:00 a.m. we finally made it to Copan Ruins, Honduras having left Antigua, Guatemala at 3:20 a.m. Although we all snoozed on the quite comfy Hedman Alas bus, we were beat and decided to just relax at Via Via (our hostel) and watch the World Cup game between Honduras and Ecuador. Via Via was giving free cubre libres (basically rum and coke) drinks for each Honduran goal. We toasted our one free cubre libre to new friends and our planned tour of the Mayan ruins tomorrow. Little did we know, then, that our plan would be thwarted at each turn, or…wrong turn.
The next morning, after a great night’s sleep at Via Via, we woke up early on the morning of our first full day in Copan Ruins, excited to see the Ruins before the rush of day trip tourists arriving around 11:00 a.m. Determined not to pay for a mototaxi (the Honduran name for a tuk-tuk) we headed on foot to walk the allegedly short 20 minutes to the Ruins. We stopped first at B’alam cafe (one of the few open before 8:00 a.m.) and had a delicious breakfast.
Of course, not one of us had actually looked up the way and about 10 minutes into the walk we looked for help. With much hand pointing to accompany the directions rattled off in Spanish, we were confident we knew where to go. 45 minutes later it became painfully obvious that we were lost. Admitting defeat, we flagged down a mototaxi that dropped us off right at the entrance.
We immediately discovered our error – had we turned right at the enormous sign stating – Copan Ruins (Left), La Entrada (right) – we would have been a mere 1/4 mile from the entrance (la entrada!) to the ruins. Instead, by going left we had circled around the town of Copan Ruins and re-entered it at the end opposite our hostel. If you get to either of these signs, turn around! The ruins are the other way, lol.
Nonetheless, we enjoyed the lovely walk through a less visited part of town.
Happy to finally be at the Copan ruins, we approached the ticket counter only to discover, to our horror, that you must show a passport or driver’s license to enter! None of us had passports with us, having chosen to leave them securely stowed at the hostel. At this point, hot, sweaty and irritated, we gave up our quest to see the ruins that day.
On the walk back someone suggested we deserved a trip to the spa. Lucky for us, there just happens to be a natural hot spring spa a short (less than an hour) drive from Copan Ruins. Back at Via Via, we immediately booked four for the 2 p.m. shuttle to Luna Jaguar hot springs.
Tomorrow we shall succeed in seeing the ruins!
Audrey, Rhiannon, Trent and Evelyn – four directionally challenged unidentified amigos