We were busy being herded into line to wait for a trolley to take us from the entry of Tulum to the entry into the ruins when I looked up…my mind was having a hard time processing this wonderful sight, that led to more as my eyes scanned beyond the line of people in front of me
A performance was about to begin by Los Voladores de Papantla (The Flyers of Papantla). The ceremony and ritual performed by these men is one that is said to have begun some 450 years ago in the mountains of Veracruz, Mexico, to appease the gods who were thought to be causing a drought. The ritual is carried out by various groups around Mexico, and we were lucky to see them here in Tulum, as well as in Playa del Carmen on another day. I’ve combined my photos from both places here. The ritual consists of the Voladores performing a short dance around a pole, followed by four men climbing the 30 meter pole, plus one elder or chief who will perform a ceremony at the top on a small platform with a flute, whose music represents bird song; the costume hat’s flowers signify fertility, the mirrors represent the sun, and the ribbons represent the rainbow.
La Danza/the dance
Heading up to fly
I’ll put a few more photos into a gallery, click on any photo to open the gallery
I will show more photos on my next post of the Voladores hanging out prior to and after performances. Beautiful faces.