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THINGS TO DO > Cultural Activities


The Maya entertain tourists with storytelling, music and dance, craft lessons, and village tours. Spend one day or many days with a Maya family to learn more about their culture. Maya MusicHelp prepare a meal with crops freshly picked from the milpas. Work the fields with a Maya farmer. Hike to nearby caves and waterfalls, and ride in a dugout back to the village under the shade of tropical forests. For more information on spending a night in a Maya village, click on TEA or Homestays.

Storytelling - Entertaining fables and folklore have been passed down through generations. These ancient stories are shared with visitors, usually told by an elder in the native Maya language (Kekchi or Mopan) and translated into English by a younger Maya villager.

Music - Musicians play a variety of instruments including the harp, flute, and the marimba. Dancers in cultural dress accompany the musicians. The performance will last an hour usually after supper.

Craft lessons - You may be taught how to make baskets from the jipijapa plant, after learning the process of shredding, washing, bleaching and drying the fibers. During your hikes through the forest, your guide will point out the jipijapa plant.

Maya corn meal

Village tour - This is a one hour introduction of the layout of the village. The school, church, stores, and other sites of interest in the village are shown. A walk along the river shows the smooth slab stones which the women use to scrub their clothes on. Learn the history and significance of each village and why it was founded.

Farm demo - Visitors are taken to the fields and shown the different type of crops grown, with an explanation of planting and harvest. if you are up to it, you can assist with the many chores necessary to make the milpa produce.

Cooking - Try your hand at patting out tortillas by the fire. It's not as easy as it looks! After a few tries and some instruction from the women, you will have them puffing up fluffy and light.

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