remote area, one of the greatest civilizations of it's
a city that endured for centuries ...
The Maya began building Tikal around 600 B.C. and at its peak some 1,500 years
ago Tikal was a wealthy metropolis, home to an estimated 100,000 Mayans, as well as an important religious, scientific, and political center.
The site today consists of over 3,000 structures extending over six square miles including temples, palaces, ceremonial platforms, ball courts, terraces, avenues and plazas.
The 5 Great Pyramids of Tikal give this ceremonial centre a majestic grandeur unique among Maya cities. The height of the temples, crowned with tremendous roof combs; the complicated assemblage of the palace structures of the central Acropolis; and the complexity of the chronology of the North Acropolis are staggering to anyone visiting Tikal for the first time.
is a Place for Wondering not only
at the engineering accomplishments of the Maya,
but at the
jungle splendors of the Petén region in Guatemala.
The site of Tikal is a national park where
the native flora and fauna still flourish relatively
Tikal Offers Opportunities for Wildlife Watching
Roaring howler monkeys and squawking parrots provide nature's soundtrack and along the paths, spider monkeys,
gray foxes, coatis-mundis, deer, oscillated turkeys and peccary are visible to the visitor.
Today, one can sit
atop a pyramid, gaze at the Great Plaza
and roof-combs rising up from the sea of jungle and imagine the
time, more than a thousand years ago, when the plaza
was alive with activity and the city was surround by
cultivated fields dotted with houses. But one can do little more than imagine, because there is no coherent history of Tikal and there may never be one. Bits and pieces of information are picked up from drawings on pottery and bone, tools, similarities in artistic styles between Tikal and other Mayan and Non-Mayan centers, and the few glyphs that have been deciphered up to now.
Museo Cerámico, displays some fascinating archaeological exhibits, including a skeleton with ornate jade jewelry in a reproduction of a burial vault, along with stelae, shells, ceramics, inscribed bones and other items recovered from the excavations. The museum is located near the park entrance.
archeologists from all around the globe and the wild-life surrounding the ruins, make Tikal a naturalist's dream.
This combination of archaeological remains and the natural environment of the Petén, makes Tikal the only place in the world which has been declared by UNESCO as both a Natural & World Cultural Heritage site.
Parque Nacional Tikal is located in the Petén region of Guatemala, and about 50 miles
northwest from the Belize border.
Located between Tikal and the border is Yaxhá, another important Maya site.