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Top Dream BMW

Article published in Motociclismo magazine in 2004.

Infinite skies, furrowed by white clouds accompanied the umpteenth dream journey of the BMW Italia motorcycle club, in search of fantastic archaeological sites and the discovery of beautiful colonial cities.

Read the story published in the magazine.

Yet another end of the year, yet another holiday, yet another Top Dream, a dream now consolidated over the years by the Motoclub Bmw Italia for its members, a few, about 40, between pilots and passengers. Each year an exclusive destination, to be traveled strictly on horseback. This year it was Mexico's turn, an extraordinary country for history and culture, to receive the attention of the group and the organization that took care of the event.

An articulated itinerary between Yucatan, rich in history and archaeological sites, and Chiapas, with its natural and landscape beauties.

4300 kilometers devoured in 15 days, full, rich, intense, which left in the participants and in us who were lucky enough to be there, a strange feeling of unfinished business, something that would have deserved a longer period of attention. The journey starts from Mexico City, a monster of about 22 million inhabitants, a catalyst of misery for many who, attracted by the mirage of a better life, every day arrives in the D.F. (Districto Federal), as it is called here.

An unofficial estimate speaks of 2,000 daily arrivals. A megalopolis that embodies the best and worst aspects of the nation. A city of colonial palaces and cultural treasures famous all over the world, but also of a truly disheartening misery, which has grown and continues to grow out of all proportion, disorderly, around its central part. A labyrinth of streets, Aces, viaducts, Eje as they call them here, which intersect each other without any apparent logical sense.

Really difficult to orientate, even the GPS, quickly, in the face of this messy road maze, go into crisis.

Of the fantastic city, the mythical Tenochitlan, which appeared in the eyes of Cortes in 1519, from the top of the pass that took its name located between the Popocatepetl and Iztaccihuatl volcanoes, built on the islets of a lagoon that served as a natural barrier to any attacks, there is nothing left.

The monster has swallowed everything, leaning heavily on the pre-existing swamps.

The long series of archaeological visits begins even before leaving the capital.

Teotihuacan. Gigantic.

In the dimension of the divinities it celebrates: the sun and the moon.

In the Nahuati language it should mean "the place where the gods were born" or "the place where one becomes a god". Interestingly, the root "theo" has the same meaning as "god" in the Greek language.

Yet another mystery of this mysterious land !!

The first 3 stages are real transfers. The weather that accompanies the top dream is strangely gray, cloudy, flat, and makes a landscape even more boring which, apart from a nice stretch of off-road vehicle, immersed in lush tropical vegetation, allows us to coast along beautiful beaches and get acquainted with the local people. Here, at least, we are really far from the most popular tourist destinations, fortunately.

The arrival in Campeche, in addition to sanctioning the entry into the Yucatan, offers a qualitative leap in the points established as the end of the stage. The city is beautiful, the only one in Mexico to have fortifications.

Inside the houses are painted in pastel colors, decorated with wrought iron. Certainly our favorite, at least until we arrived in Chiapas.

The legend says that when the Spanish explorer Francisco Hernandez de Cordoba, the first white man on Mexican soil, landed on the peninsula, in 1517, asking the Mayan inhabitants, whom he met what they called this region, they replied: "Yucatan", which more or minus means: "I don't understand you".

This peninsula that stretches between the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean sea, has the most beautiful beaches in the country and some of the most important archaeological sites. Unfortunately, the roads are endless, flat rectilinear, immersed in a continuous green tropical vegetation, which leaves little room for imagination and joy for driving. The sequence of sites is impressive in importance and beauty: Uxmal, beautiful, Chichen Itza, beautiful, Coban, interesting and unknown to the masses, Tulum, the only Mayan city built by the sea. Chiapas is located in the southernmost part of the nation and is one of the most beautiful and authentic regions of Mexico, although certainly one of the poorest. Here the Caribbean Sea and tourists are missing, but the group does not seem to notice it, quite the contrary! Beautiful mountain roads: curves, thousands of curves, very long, sometimes raised will accompany us for several days. The ribbon of asphalt rises and dominates a fantastic landscape that stretches as far as the eye can see, covered by a very clear blue sky crossed by dazzling white clouds.

The last Mayan site is probably the most extraordinary as well.

Palenque, literally "surrounded by trees", is one of the most beautiful and best preserved sites.

A temple on each of the small hills, surrounded by the virgin forest.


But the absolute protagonist is, fortunately, still the road, which will lead us first to the Agua Azul waterfalls, then to San Cristobal de las Casas.

The former are an invitation to a short break and an invigorating bath in its fresh turquoise waters due to the color of the stones of the seabed: more than 500 waterfalls with a height varying between 3 and 30m.

The second, as well as being the point of arrival of the day, snatches the palm of the most interesting city from Campeche: ancient, suggestive, quiet, relaxed.

Colonial houses and a market frequented by indigenous Maya and Tzotziles.

The latter are among those who have best preserved their ethnic originality.

We are now at the end, despite the last, splendid 200 kilometers that lead to Oxaca, (pronounced Uacaca), another colonial city full of charm, much larger than San Cristobal.

Homeland of metzcal, one of the national drinks, it offers another site not to be missed: Monte Alban, a set of pyramids and tombs, a religious city built by the Zatopeche on a cliff 9 kilometers from Oxaca, from which you can enjoy a breathtaking view .

From here only 500 kilometers to the destination, to the return of the vehicles and to the return to Italy.

The highway, very expensive, allows you to arrive quickly by diving into the chaos of Mexico (it is also called this by its inhabitants).

It's over.

We hope to see you next year for another dream.

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