The Mayan Civilization, a Mesoamerican culture who built their cities in present day Mexico and Central America, were once of the most sophisticated civilizations of their time period. Scientists believe the Mayan civilization was established somewhere between 2000 and 250 B.C., with the culture thriving and flourishing between 250-900 A.D. and dying out after the arrival of the Spanish in the 16th century. The Mayan civilization had a fully developed written language and they also made significant contributions to architecture, astronomy, math, and art. Today, we only have ruins to remind us of the once great Mayan culture. Here is an overview of some of the most famous and frequently visited Mayan ruins in existence today.
Tikal was one of the Mayan civilization’s largest and most developed cities. Archaeologists have discovered over 3000 structures in the 10 square miles that have currently been excavated, including many tombs and monuments dedicated to the Mayan royalty.
The ruins in Copan, just across the border from Guatemala are characterized by ornate stone carvings and hieroglyphics as well as a large ball court.
Chichen Itza, Mexico
As the former capital of the ancient Maya Empire, Chichen Itza is one of the most impressive and renowned Mayan cultural sites. The ruins include a 75 foot pyramid known as the Temple of Kukulcán and an ancient Ball Court where Mayans once played a mysterious ball game.
Archaeologists believe that Tulum, the only Mayan city located directly on the ocean, might have been one of the most significant Mayan ceremonial centers. Characterized by the hauntingly beautiful pyramid El Castillo perched on a cliff directly above the sea, visitors to Tulum can explore the remains of this ancient thriving city that once included homes, business, and roads. To visit these monuments just find some cheap flights operator and adventure is ready to go.