The Altun Ha Mayan Ruins is the most extensively excavated site in Belize. The core site includes thirteen structures clustered within two classic period plazas.
Plaza A is near the entrance to the site and is enclosed by large temples on all four sides. Here, a magnificent tomb was discovered beneath the Temple of the Green Tomb. Dating from 550 A.D., this find yielded a total of three hundred pieces, including jade, jewelry, stingray spines, skinflints, and the remains of a Maya book.
The Adjacent Plaza B is dominated by the sites largest temple, the Temple of Masonry Altar, which rises 60 ft. above the plaza and was the last in a series of buildings raised on this spot. This temple is believed to have been the main focus of religious ceremonies, with a single stairway running up the front to an altar at the top.
Several priestly tombs have been uncovered within the main structure; tragically, however, most of them had already been desecrated, possibly during political turmoil that preceded the abandonment of the site. It was here that archeologists discovered a carved jade head of Kinich Ahau, the Mayan sun god. At 15cm high, it is the largest carved jade piece to be found anywhere in the Maya world.
Just outside these two main plazas, a short nature trail leads to Clay-lined Rockstone Pond, which was dammed and used as a reservoir in ancient Mayan times. Altun Ha was an important trading and religious ceremonial center. Evolution of the temples at Altun Ha continued until about 1,000 A.D.
Tour Includes: Includes: Breakfast, lunch, and fees
Schedule: Wednesdays, 8:15 am – 4:30 pm
Cost: $250 (Air) + $5 park fee
Option: Boat transportation only $90 (Entrance fee & tour not included)
Contact the Captain Morgan’s Retreat Tour Desk to learn more about this fantastic Belize tour option.