Trippy Travel Photo #13: The Human Tree, Tikal, Guatemala

Trippy Travel Photo #13

Ready to play Trippy Travel Photo Game #13 and possibly win a mention/link back to your site? It’s easy! Just…

1. Look at the Photo/Study the Details

2. Guess what/where/why!

What do you see in the photo?

Where was I traveling when I saw it/them? What famous site is this part of?

(If you have no idea, it’s OK to make up silly answers. That’s fun, too!)

3. Check back later!

–Post your guesses here in the Comments Section (tweets and FB comments don’t count–sorry)

–Keep checking and guessing as the guessing gets good…

–See who won…maybe it will be you!

The prize?

A mention of your name and a link to your site from within this post.

And the winner is….

Alain Wong of His initial guess was the hottest one of all–the Tree of Life in Oaxaca, Mexico. He later narrowed it down to Tikal in Guatemala. No one’s %100sure if it’s a Cypress tree, but we think it is and so (unless someone corrects us), that’s what we’re calling it. Or perhaps a “human Cypress tree” is a better name?

The answer: Human Cypress Tree–Tikal, Guatemala

This tree, which resembles a human body (or perhaps two of them), was photographed on the grounds of Tikal, Guatemala. Located in the El Petén rainforest, it is one of the major sites of Mayan civilization, inhabited from the 6th century B.C. to the 10th century A.D.

Tikal, a great trade, religious, and political center that dominated the region at times, was estimated to have had a peak population of 100,000 to 200,000 with an urban density of 600 to 700 people per square kilometer. The grounds where this photo was shot contain intact temples and palaces, as well as public squares.

What makes it especially beautiful is that it’s technically in the jungle. In the early morning, there is often a mysterious mist and the sound of howler monkeys in the distance.

Can’t get enough?

Like this game? Enjoy learning about new places? Here are all of the Trippy Travel Photos–guesses and winners–all on one page.

26 Responses to Trippy Travel Photo #13: The Human Tree, Tikal, Guatemala
  1. Aaron @ Aaron's Worldwide Adventures
    November 22, 2011 | 1:42 am

    My first instinct was legs, but I’m going to go with trees…
    Aaron @ Aaron’s Worldwide Adventures recently posted..Escaping Reality to TofinoMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      November 22, 2011 | 8:36 am

      Hi, Aaron. Good guess! Yes, they’re trees. I wonder if you might know where…

  2. Claire
    November 22, 2011 | 8:12 am

    I agree with Aaron-I was thinking elephant legs, but then I went with trees. Very old trees in some famous forst or garden. How about the Garden of Gethsemane in Israel?!
    Claire recently posted..Sometimes, Travel Rears Back and Slaps you in the FaceMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      November 22, 2011 | 8:37 am

      Great guess, Claire! Yes–trees. And yes–somewhere famous, but not a forest or garden. The Israel guess is a good one, but wrong continent. Thanks for playing!

  3. Andrea
    November 22, 2011 | 12:10 pm

    Trees, Thailand, an island – maybe Koh Samui.

    It’s been a long time but from vague memories there is a male tree next to this female one…

    • CB Driver
      November 22, 2011 | 9:04 pm

      Hi, Andrea. Thanks for playing! Great guess–and one that makes me curious re: what you’ve mentioned. Thailand..islands…and male/female trees. I like that you see a gender in this tree, too. Anyway, unfortunately, the photo was not taken in Thailand.

      So…now we’ve ruled out Israel and Thailand. Any more ideas? :)

  4. Lynette
    November 23, 2011 | 2:12 am

    Cypress tree,Okefenokee Swamp, Florida

    • CB Driver
      November 23, 2011 | 9:14 am

      HI, Lynette. Great guess! I’ve been to certain parts of Florida that have lovely trees and I can see how you might think it’s from there. But….the photo was not taken in the US. Any other thoughts? :)

  5. Robert Watson
    November 23, 2011 | 6:38 am

    They sure look like Aussie eucalyptus gum trees, but you haven’t been down here. They have lots of these growing in southern California, but you wouldn’t put in something from your own country. [this is like CSI:ChickyBus]
    Another place where there are heaps of these is Uruguay, but you haven’t been there either, so I am narrowing down to Argentina or Peru. My heart says it will be Peru, but my brain is going for Argentina, inland from BA.
    My guess is “Argentina”.

    • CB Driver
      November 23, 2011 | 9:20 am

      Howdy, Robert! Love the idea of “CSI: Chickybus”–hilarious! Perhaps I’ll use that for something (if you don’t mind)? :)

      Re: where….well, I might use the US for one of these–if the photo is “trippy” enough. That would make it tricky since people would think I wouldn’t. (he, he, he) Anyway, right now, you’re winning the game. Why? Because you’ve guessed somewhere in Latin America–and that’s closer than anyone has gotten. It’s neither of the countries you mentioned, however. Peru, because it’s further north, is “warm,” though.

      Thanks for playing! Hope you can narrow it down and be the winner. I think you’ll find the exact location of this tree/these trees fascinating because it’s somewhere ancient/historical.

  6. Michael Figueiredo
    November 23, 2011 | 10:25 pm

    At first I thought I was looking at my grandma’s legs (just kidding!) then I figured the photo was of some trees. Maybe Ta Phrom Temple in Angkor, Cambodia?
    Michael Figueiredo recently posted..Field Trip: A Visit to Crystal Cruises’ SymphonyMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      November 23, 2011 | 11:11 pm

      Hi, Michael. Funny guess (poor grandma)! :) Yes to the trees–no to Cambodia. Check out the comment that came in about 1/2 hour after yours and you’ll see a super hot guess–one that’s very Latin American! :)

  7. Alain Wong
    November 23, 2011 | 11:02 pm

    Hey Lisa,

    Here’s my guess: El Arbol Del Tule, a Montezuma cypress near the city of Oaxaca, Mexico, nicknamed “The Tree of Life”.

    • CB Driver
      November 23, 2011 | 11:12 pm

      Alain–your guess is the best one yet. You’re officially in the lead. I believe it is a cypress (but not 100% sure) and the actual location is in the country right next door! Keep trying and you may be the winner!

  8. Emme Rogers
    November 24, 2011 | 7:54 pm

    That looks like an Arbutus Tree.

    So I am going to say you are on the West Coast. The most abundant place for them is Southern Vancouver Island.
    Emme Rogers recently posted..Ummm … Brie … We’re WaitingMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      November 25, 2011 | 9:52 pm

      Hi, Emme. Great guess! Unfortunately, that’s not it. The tree was in Guatemala and the exact location/description will be announced shortly (at the end of the post). Thanks so much for playing! Another round’s coming in a couple weeks!

  9. Alain Wong
    November 25, 2011 | 12:51 pm

    Hmmmm…. here’s my second guess: a kapok tree from the ruins of Tikal in Guatemala.

    • CB Driver
      November 25, 2011 | 9:55 pm

      Hi, Alain–aka, “the winner.” Yes, you got it! Tikal in Guatemala. Just inside the park, from what I recall. I’m not sure if it’s a Cypress or a Kapok tree, but I think it’s the former and not the latter. I do recall the Kapoks (Ceiba trees?) and I recall them being a bit different. Anyway, you guessed Cypress previously and now, Tikal, and so–you are the winner.


      Hope to see you in a few weeks for the next round of the Trippy Travel Photo Game!

  10. Alli
    November 25, 2011 | 4:25 pm

    Ah, Alain you beat me to it! I thought Tikal as well but as Alain got in before me, I’m going to guess and say Parque Nakum, 25 kms from Tikal. This is a fun game, thanks for organising!
    Alli recently posted..Off the Beaten Track: A Tibetan Wedding in KathmanduMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      November 25, 2011 | 9:57 pm

      Hi, Alli. Thanks so much for playing. Alain did end up being the winner, but you came close. It was inside Tikal–on the grounds, that is. I’ll post more of a description in the “And the Answer Is…” section shortly. Glad you enjoyed the game. Another round coming up soon!

  11. Victor
    December 17, 2011 | 12:43 pm

    That is such a cool idea! Not only have we been to Tikal and I would have been clueless to make as close a guess as Alain did, but I am also looking for an engaging way to display our photos on Planet Vagabond and yours is very inspiring.
    Victor recently posted..Salkantay Trek with Rasgos Del Peru Tour OperatorMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      December 18, 2011 | 4:18 pm

      Thanks, Victor. I’m happy I’ve set up this game. It’s been a fun and educational experience. Alain was amazing in how he narrowed it down. He’s now the reigning champion!

  12. Alain Wong
    December 21, 2011 | 5:10 pm

    Haha, thanks— I was lucky.

    Can’t wait for the next Trippy Travel Photo!

    • CB Driver
      December 21, 2011 | 9:40 pm

      Great job! Hopefully, there will be another one soon!

  13. Rahul
    December 30, 2011 | 12:58 pm

    Intriguing and cryptic….btw, very well captured…. thanks for the post…i learned something new today…

  14. [...] that are nature-oriented and others that are “trippy” in some way–like the Human Tree I photographed in Guatemala. 6 Comments – Leave a comment! « Previous PostNext Post [...]

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