Inner Tubing in the Sanctity of Mayan Caves in Belize
After an hour hike penetrating the dense foliage of Belize’s Jaguar Paw rainforest, I greet a bearded black howler monkey mocking my decision to strip down to my boxers, rent an inner tube (and requisite miner light) to descend into the mouth of the dank, dark caves, part of the hallowed Xibalba underworld, where the ancient Maya performed secret, sacred rituals. This glide through the lifeless waters evokes a scene from Apocalypto. Halfway through, I disembark onto a craggy rock and dive into the inky cool water. Silence. A primordial place of tranquility. After a precarious swim through the jagged rocks that lurk below the surface, I reunite with my errant tube and float past artifacts into the dappled sunlight dancing along the exit. In the distance, the remnants of a jungle-veined ruin, a testament to the glorious Mayan civilization.