Dec. 21, 2012: Eyewitness report from the end of the world and Mayan Calendar in Mexico

TULUM, Mexico - A planetary kin circle featured dozens of new-agers gathering to reflect on 2012 and look ahead to 2013 as part of a week-long ¨Galactic Festival¨ taking place at the Uno Astrolodge on the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula.

The lodge and camping site is near the Mayan ruins of Tulum, which date to 1200 A.D.

The events are to mark the Dec. 21, 2012, end of the Mayan calendar - and they are some of the few actual commemorations I´ve found starting before this Friday´s solstice and historic calendar-end date.

I arrived late last week - flying into the Cancun airport - and immediately traveled an hour south to Playa del Carmen.  There, few signs of the approaching calendar end date were evident. A few T-shirts for sale and advertisements for a music festival were all that could be seen on the city´s famous 5th Avenue pedestrian walkway.

On the whole, Mexicans in the bustling seaside community seemed much more interested in Christmas. Holiday decorations lined the streets and a huge tree filled the municipal plaza. And nearby, Walmart was packed with shoppers.

Another hour´s drive south to Tulum and the vibe was similar. Tourists and locals going about their daily routines. But here some talked of planned celebrations at historic Mayan sites in the region.

According to hoteliers in the area, special commemorations are planned for Friday at the Tulum fortress ruins, as well as at the Mexican Riviera eco-park, Xel-Ha. In addition, the famous Mayan site of Chitzen Itza is expected to draw a huge crowd and offer numerous events related to Mayan culture and tradition.

Back at the Uno Astrolodge, a schedule of meditation, yoga and astrological study continues throughout the week, with more new-agers from around the globe expected to join the countdown to the end of the Mayan calendar.

To read more stories about the Mayan calendar got to www.newsnet5.com/mayancalendar

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