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Ruins of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula

Apocalypse when? The Maya, known for their tall pyramids, epic ballgames and human sacrifices, once dominated the Mexican state of Yucatán. These days, the area makes a fascinating destination for a photographer, with pre-Columbian and colonial architecture, eerily lighted underground pools and jungle landscapes. It's also one of the safest states in Mexico -- unless, of course, you believe the profiteers selling the idea that the Mayas predicted an end to everything on Dec. 21, 2012.
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