Cancún Celebrates the End of the Mayan Calendar

From gala dinners to a pyramid made of bottles, Cancún rings in the end of an era

Pyramid of Positive Thoughts

As the world counts down to the end of the Mayan calendar Dec. 21, instead of worrying about the doom of the human race (which some observers expect to coincide with the occasion), Cancún is celebrating with a variety of events to mark the end of an era.

Eco-archeological park Xcaret is hosting a Day of the Dead celebration to honor souls of the departed from Oct. 30 to Nov. 2, and its restaurant, The Island, is offering a gala dinner, with dancing and a traditional menu, on Dec. 21.

Xel-Há, an ecological park that juts into the Caribbean Sea, is hosting a candlelight ceremony from Dec. 20 to Dec. 22 and a dinner party from Dec. 17 to Dec. 22 where guests can learn about astronomy while eating traditional Mayan food.

In Tulum, approximately 82 miles from Cancun’s hotel zone, artist Xavier de Maria y Campos is marking the occasion with a 40-foot-by-40-foot Pyramid of Positive Thoughts, which pays tribute to the Mayan legacy and will hold up to 700,000 positive thoughts. Locals and tourists can contribute to the construction of the modern-day pyramid by bringing recycled bottles filled with handwritten well-wishes to Cancun. Alternate layers of PET bottles filled with the notes will be layered with soil containing plant seeds that eventually will grow into a green covering over the pyramid, ultimately leaving a 40-foot-high pyramid of foliage behind.

Lauren Mack is the Travel Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @lmack.