Rio Lagartos Is a Wild and Wonderful Natural Classroom
Did you realize that there could be a lot more to Yucatan than just vast stretches of sandy beaches and azure water teeming with marine life? With some creative thinking and initiative you will soon find yourself in the coastal village of Rio Lagartos, a scenic haven that is home to a variety of birds and animals. Referred to as the ‘Land of Flamingoes’, Rio Lagartos in literal translation means ‘river of alligators’ and while this region does not have any rivers yet it is definitely full of crocodiles and alligators.
The area of land that is presently designated as a bio-reserve was once inhabited by the Mayans who named it ‘Holkoben’. For them, it served as a transit point wherein they could rejuvenate themselves on their journey to and from the lagoons and salt pans. Some of the remnants of this great ancient civilization still mark the topography like cenotes and Mayan huts which offer curative mud baths to interested tourists.
The rest of the biosphere reserve comprised of scrub land, mangrove forests, lagoons and fresh water springs are perfect ingredients for a memorable adventure travel holiday.
Excursions to this region are conducted by day as also by night. And because daytime temperatures are high, chances of spotting wildlife in its natural setting are higher during the night. If you are a true nature enthusiast then a guided tour that would take you even to the far reaching corners of this habitat would be your best bet.
A local guide will lead the way all through the hike and you will come across many unique sights and learn how plants and animals contribute towards this delicate ecosystem.
Adventure travel tours to Rio Lagartos could be taken on foot, bikes or kayaks depending on the personal choice of the tourist. Irrespective of the mode of transport used, bearing in mind the dos’ and don’ts would ensure that the trip into the wilderness is not just an enriching experience but an enjoyable one, too.
Wearing full length pants and full sleeved shirt is a must. For complete protection, one must wear well-fitting shoes and a hat. Applying sun-block on your skin will save you from painful sunburns and bring or apply a mosquito repellent to keep bugs at bay.
Other important things to bring include a rain-coat, sufficient drinking water not to mention enough cash to last throughout the trip and cater for emergency. Of course, don’t ever forget to bring with you a pair of good binoculars and a camera during this adventure travel trip.
Since the primary reason for visiting this bio-reserve is to watch crocodiles in their comfort zone, learning about these creatures prior to the tour will give you better understanding. Most of the adventure travel tours in this region focus on the Mexican variety, also known as morelet crocodile, which is believed to be the offspring of a long and ancient lineage stretching over 125 years.
Although, smaller in size than their American counterparts, these are distinguished on the basis of some unique features like dark bands throughout their length and webbed hind feet.
Owing to their ability to survive in diverse surroundings, morelet crocodiles can be spotted near freshwater bodies, for example a spring along the lesser known hiking path of Sendero Peten Tucha, and also around some cenotes. Seclusion being their main priority, one of the reasons that they have survived in this region for so long is its dense forest cover which serves to shield the juvenile until they are old enough to venture out.
You can read about all these creatures during your biology lesson in the classroom too but if you get an opportunity do venture out on an actual tour because nothing in this world could be a better teacher than a real life experience.