Mexico Tourist Destination Quintana Roo

Tulum was first mentioned by Juan Díaz, part of Juan de Grijalva's expedition of 1518. The first detailed description of the ruins was published by John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood in 1843 in the book Incidents of Travel in Yucatan. Stephens and Catherwood first visited Tulum in the mid-19th century AD. As they arrived from the sea Stephens and Catherwood first saw a tall building that impressed them greatly. This was most likely the great Castillo of the site. They made accurate maps of the site’s wall and other buildings while Catherwood made some stunning sketches of the Castillo, along with others, which would have been as close to a photograph as possible at the time. Stephens and Catherwood also discovered an early classic stele at the site that had an inscribed date of AD 564 that was most likely brought in from a nearby town to be reused.

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