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Cozumel Beach Webcam, Mexico

Central America, Mexico, Cozumel
 

Cozumel live web cam

 

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Cozumel (Mayan: Island of the Swallows) is an island in the Caribbean Sea off the eastern coast of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, opposite Playa del Carmen, and close to the Yucatan Channel. Cozumel is one of the nine municipalities (municipios) of the state of Quintana Roo. Cozumel is a tourist destination for its balnearios, scuba diving, and snorkeling. The main town on the island is San Miguel de Cozumel.

The Maya are believed to have first settled Cozumel by the early part of the 1st millennium AD, and older Preclassic Olmec artifacts have been found on the island as well. The island was sacred to Ix Chel, the Maya Moon Goddess, and the temples here were a place of pilgrimage, especially by women desiring fertility. There are a number of ruins on the island, most from the Post-Classic period. The largest Maya ruins on the island were bulldozed to make way for an airplane runway during World War II. The ruins of San Gervasio are located approximately at the center of the island and are the largest remaining ruins.

The first Spanish visitor was Juan de Grijalva in 1518 , and in the following year Hernán Cortés came with a fleet and destroyed many Maya temples. Some 40,000 Mayans lived on the island then, but the smallpox disease devastated them, and by 1570 only 30 were left alive. In the ensuing years Cozumel was nearly deserted, just used as a hideout by pirates from time to time. In 1848, the Caste War of Yucatán resulted in resettlement by refugees escaping the tumult. A plaque at the Museo Cozumel states that Abraham Lincoln as the American President came close to purchasing the island of Cozumel as a place to send the freed slaves. The continued war in the Yucatan caused him to change his mind.

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