The legend of the aluxes

Aluxes

Mexico is a country extremely rich in culture, beliefs, and history, so it is not surprising that it is also rich in mythology, which is reflected in the iconography, customs, and legends past and present. In Mexico you can find magical places and folktales wherever you go, and the beautiful destination of Cancun is no different.

Under a bridge situated between the airport and the hotel zone you will find one of the most popular legends in Quintana Roo state. If you arrived in Cancun by plane or have travelled between Cancun and Playa del Carmen you may have noticed a small stone pyramid with a tiny house on top. What may at first glance look like a simple Mayan welcome to the millions of tourists who pass it each year, actually reveals something rather sinister.

Cancun-Nizuc bridge

It is a story about aluxes, mythical beings of the Yucatan peninsula similar to elves or goblins. They are said to be the size of children but with the bodies and faces of adults; mischievous creatures that enjoy getting together and scaring humans. They are also said to be possessive of their territory and will stop at nothing to protect what they believe is theirs.

The legend goes that when construction began back in the 1990s on the bridge that marks the entrance to Cancun the first advances made were destroyed inexplicably on at least three occasions. Many locals said it showed all the signs of angry aluxes.

The house for the aluxes

Realising that they were making no progress and following the recommendation of those indigenous to the region, the engineers decided to call a Mayan priest. The priest carried out a ritual to contact the aluxes with the aim of creating a pact that would allow construction to continue unjeopardized. The small pyramid and house was built and offered as a gift to the aluxes, and from this point onwards the construction of the bridge could be completed without being tampered with.

 

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