Laguna Campechen - Mexico
Laguna Campechen is on the Yucatan Peninsula to the south of Tulum on the northern border of Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve. Maya hand-excavated canals link Boca Paila (the sea entrance) to Laguna Chunyaxche and Laguna Muyil, where ancient ruins are located. Laguna Campechen is also linked creating a vast inland waterway of narrow canals and big lakes. The Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve is one of the largest protected areas in Mexico - one third tropical forest, one third fresh and saltwater marshes and mangroves and the rest marine including a section of the barrier reef. The area boasts all five species of Mexican cat, including jaguars and pumas, monkeys and 300 bird species as well as endangered turtles on the beaches and crocodiles in the mangroves. The remaining ancient ruins at Muyil (Chunyaxche) date from 1200 to 1500AD and there are more than 100 mounds and temples in the vegetation.