Teotihuacan – Gateway To The Ancients

On our arrival in Mexico in early 2019, we landed in Mexico City after nightfall. After a slightly hair-raising drive out of the city in the dark, having to compete with unknown roads, a very different driving style, and wild dogs randomly appearing on the roads as we drove about thirty miles northeast, we found ourselves in a hotel a few hundred yards from the ruins of Teotihuacan – although in the dark we didn’t see them that night.

The following morning we set off for the site, and having paid our entrance fee we made two very good choices – an early arrival, and entering to park behind the Pyramid of the Sun rather than around at the main entrance to the site. This meant initially avoiding all of the stalls selling souvenirs, and meant that the famous Pyramid of the Sun was the first sight we saw on arrival, and also the first building we arrived at, allowing us to climb it before it got too busy later in the day.

The Pyramid of the Sun was built around 200CE, a couple of centuries before Teotihuacan reached its peak, and several centuries before the whole city was abandoned between about 600CE and 750CE. Why, exactly, the city was abandoned is still a matter for debate – as many public buildings were burned around the year 600, some claim it was an uprising against the rulers from within the city, while others theorise that an outside invasion began the downfall. Either way, people seem to have slowly drifted away from the city to leave it empty by 750.

As you climb up the Pyramid of the Sun, you feel the effort that must have gone into building that single temple, let along the entire city. The structure itself stands at two hundred and sixteen feet, roughly half the height of the Great Pyramid at Giza, but you are starting your climb at an altitude of a little over seven thousand feet. Having landed only the night before, and having travelled from just above sea level in our home on the Isle of Wight, we found our hearts racing by the time we reached the top – something to bear in mind if you make a visit to the site.

After the Pyramid of the Sun, we climbed its sister temple, the Pyramid of the Moon. For me, this was a better view than from the top of the taller pyramid. The Pyramid of the Moon is a little over half the height of the Pyramid of the Sun, but stands at the end of the Street of the Dead, and so from the top you look down across the whole site in a single view. It was here that I found myself musing not about the end, but rather about the origins of the city.

When the Aztecs first rediscovered the city in the fifteenth century they named it Teotihuacan, meaning ‘the place where the gods were born’. Looking out across the site it is easy to understand why the Aztecs would have thought that. Trying to imagine the people of 300BCE starting a city here, and all of these structures being built by people by the fifth century really took some effort. Especially as we know so little about the people that built it, including who they were.

 

It was once thought that the Toltec people had built the city, but as they only came to prominence in around 900CE, nearly two hundred years after Teotihuacan’s decline, this theory is now generally considered to be incorrect. Other people look to the Totonac tribe, or even unnamed people who had fled to the area after a natural disaster and built the city up from humble beginnings.

 

Whoever built it, and for whatever reason it was abandoned, the site today stands as one of the best historical sites of its type that I have ever visited, and I would strongly advise that if you are heading to Mexico at any point in the future, this is definitely a site that you should be planning to visit!

Thanks for reading, and safe travels!

Greg

P.S.

For information on all of our projects, visit: www.gregandfelicityadventures.com

Follow us on Instagram at: https://www.instagram.com/gregandfelicityadventures

Like us on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/GregandFelicityAdventures

 

There are various places you can watch our documentaries and series!

 

ROMANIA: SEEKING DRACULA’S CASTLE: Our travel documentary looking into the history, legend and castles connected to Vlad Dracula III, sometimes known as Vlad the Impaler, and a journey around Romania:

Free Worldwide on Plex: https://watch.plex.tv/movie/romania-seeking-draculas-castle

Free (USA) on Tubi: https://tubitv.com/movies/579192/romania-seeking-dracula-s-castle

Prime Video (From £1.99, no Ads) (UK): https://www.amazon.co.uk//dp/B08RDPZP14

Prime Video (From $1.99, no Ads) (USA): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08RDJR4F2

 

TURKEY: FAIRY CHIMNEYS AND UNDERGROUND CITIES: A travel documentary across Turkey, from the Fairy Chimneys and Underground Cities of Cappadocia to the ancient Greek ruins of Ephesus and Hierapolis:

Free Worldwide on Plex: https://watch.plex.tv/movie/turkey-fairy-chimneys-and-underground-cities

Free (USA) on Tubi: https://tubitv.com/movies/579225/turkey-fairy-chimneys-and-underground-cities

 

Seeking Cetaceans In Scotland: A documentary about the work of the Cetacean Research and Rescue Unit as they work to help whales, dolphins and porpoises in the Moray Firth in Scotland:

Available to buy on DVD (with £5 from each donated to the charity): https://ko-fi.com/s/73e469d114

 

Greg Chapman’s Magic Show: An eight-part series of magic and entertainment with Greg:

Available to buy on DVD: https://ko-fi.com/s/7c1bc10a08

 

Mexico: Mayan Mystery and Marine Majesty: Filmed on our honeymoon in Mexico in 2019, our first travel documentary took us through the ancient sites of Teotihuacan, Uxmal, El Tajin, Palenque, Chichen Itza and Calakmul, and then on to see the whales of Magdalena Bay, whale sharks of La Paz, and more.

Watch free on YouTube: https://youtu.be/yfMpD868MHU

 

The Isle of Man: Railways, Castles and Seals: Our second travel documentary took us to the Isle of Man!

Watch free on YouTube: https://youtu.be/uCpUa6XEkbg

Welcome To The Adventure!

Greetings everyone, and welcome!

My name is Greg – magician, juggler, entertainer and travel documentary maker – and this is my blog! The main focus of this blog will be travel, history and magic, but do expect other topics to crop up as we go along.

Along with my wife (who for reasons of our work at Steampunk events and a series of Steampunk inspired audio-books I tend to refer to as Lady Felicity), we began this year launching a new adventure in our lives – the creation of travel adventure documentaries taking us around the world to share the sights, history, and wildlife in as  many countries as possible!

It all began this January, when we set off to Mexico on our honeymoon. We decided on this as our destination because it combined Lady Felicity’s love of marine wildlife, and her dream to travel to Magdalena Bay in the Baja California of Mexico, where at the right time of year you can take a boat out to see grey whales in the wild, with my desire to see ancient ruins in the jungles, and basically to be Indiana Jones (without the tomb-raiding aspects of his stories!).

From swimming with the whale sharks in La Paz (pictured below) to exploring ruins such as El Tajin (pictured above) we travelled all over in an attempt to see as much wildlife and history as we could fit in to a month.

About halfway through the month it occurred to me just how amazing the footage we were filming was, and just what a great experience it would be to share with the world, and with my background in video making and entertainment, we decided that we could create a travel documentary.

So our adventures began! In this blog I will be delving a little deeper into the history and stories behind some of the places which we have visited on our travels, a chance to provide more information than we could in our videos.

In the meantime, you can Watch The Mexico Travel Documentary Here and watch the videos of our latest travels on the Greg and Felicity Adventures Website!

If you’d like to help us out, then please leave a comment either on this blog or on our videos on YouTube – and be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/gregandfelicityadventures.

Thanks for reading our blog, safe travels!

Greg

 

For information on all of our projects, visit: www.gregandfelicityadventures.com

Follow us on Instagram at: https://www.instagram.com/gregandfelicityadventures

Like us on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/GregandFelicityAdventures

 

There are various places you can watch our documentaries and series!

 

ROMANIA: SEEKING DRACULA’S CASTLE: Our travel documentary looking into the history, legend and castles connected to Vlad Dracula III, sometimes known as Vlad the Impaler, and a journey around Romania:

Free Worldwide on Plex: https://watch.plex.tv/movie/romania-seeking-draculas-castle

Free (USA) on Tubi: https://tubitv.com/movies/579192/romania-seeking-dracula-s-castle

Prime Video (From £1.99, no Ads) (UK): https://www.amazon.co.uk//dp/B08RDPZP14

Prime Video (From $1.99, no Ads) (USA): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08RDJR4F2

 

TURKEY: FAIRY CHIMNEYS AND UNDERGROUND CITIES: A travel documentary across Turkey, from the Fairy Chimneys and Underground Cities of Cappadocia to the ancient Greek ruins of Ephesus and Hierapolis:

Free Worldwide on Plex: https://watch.plex.tv/movie/turkey-fairy-chimneys-and-underground-cities

Free (USA) on Tubi: https://tubitv.com/movies/579225/turkey-fairy-chimneys-and-underground-cities

 

Seeking Cetaceans In Scotland: A documentary about the work of the Cetacean Research and Rescue Unit as they work to help whales, dolphins and porpoises in the Moray Firth in Scotland:

Available to buy on DVD (with £5 from each donated to the charity): https://ko-fi.com/s/73e469d114

 

Greg Chapman’s Magic Show: An eight-part series of magic and entertainment with Greg:

Available to buy on DVD: https://ko-fi.com/s/7c1bc10a08

 

Mexico: Mayan Mystery and Marine Majesty: Filmed on our honeymoon in Mexico in 2019, our first travel documentary took us through the ancient sites of Teotihuacan, Uxmal, El Tajin, Palenque, Chichen Itza and Calakmul, and then on to see the whales of Magdalena Bay, whale sharks of La Paz, and more.

Watch free on YouTube: https://youtu.be/yfMpD868MHU

 

The Isle of Man: Railways, Castles and Seals: Our second travel documentary took us to the Isle of Man!

Watch free on YouTube: https://youtu.be/uCpUa6XEkbg