The dense jungle surrounding Palenque is home to a variety of exotic animals, most notably a huge population of howler monkeys. You can watch them frolic curiously at the ruins and, if you opt to sleep in one of the many jungle accommodation options, you might catch one swinging from a tree outside your window. The Lonely Planet refers to “some magical spots where howler monkeys romp in the tree canopy and unseen animals chirp after dark,” selling it as a charming and desirable trait of the place you are going to sleep at night.
Have you ever heard the howl of a howler monkey?? It is the stuff of nightmares. A deep, guttural, LOUD roar that sounds nothing like the cute furry mammal it comes from. I kid you not, it sounds exactly like a dinosaur. From dusk until sunrise, these devil monkeys howl into the black night, like a T-Rex pummeling through the jungle to come eat you alive. It’s absolutely terrifying, and there is nothing magical about it.