When choosing a shore excursion I often pick one that will allow me to better understand the country I am visiting. So recently, as a passenger on the Carnival Breeze, I decided to visit Discover Mexico Park while in Cozumel. As it turned out, it was a very good decision.
The first area in the museum was a four-screen video presentation. The film took two years of filming all over Mexico. The culmination of music and colorful images was a wonderful introduction to the museum and the country.
The next area was the Museum of Popular Arts; an excellent gallery of contemporary folk art. I was very impressed with the imaginative pieces all created by renowned Mexican artisans. Although I enjoyed all the experiences here, the art gallery was exceptional.
The next featured area was Diorama Garden. Beautiful plants and flowers surrounded models of many of Mexico’s famous sites. The scale-downed versions of Chichén Itzá and other pyramids, monuments, cathedrals, and the Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City’s elegant boulevard, were intricately detailed. Meandering along the wide shaded pathway was relaxing and enjoyable.
I thought this was the end of the tour until I came to the museum’s Papantla Flyers. The 1,500 year old ritual was being performed by four colorfully-dressed men or voladores who launch themselves backwards tied by a single string. The performance began high off the ground and the men were slowly lowered as the merry-go-round like structure rotated the men around a center pole. The centuries-old Mesoamerican tradition was created to appease the gods and bring back the rains during a time of drought. Fascinating!
Discover Mexico Park was designed to be fully accessible for individuals and their traveling companions that may be restricted in their mobility and can be enjoyed at a leisurely pace.
I would certainly recommend a visit if you are interested in history, art and culture.
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