Tikal is the largest of the ancient ruined cities of the Mayan civilization. Tikal is located in Guatemala in the department of Petén.
During the Classic Period it was one of the largest and most important Mayan cities. Although abandoned, the center was still known and a sacred place to the Maya of the region. But it wasn’t until the middle of the 19th century that the first expedition was led here. But the value of this site was not initially recognized. Even John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood heard of temples with white roofs towering over the rainforest, but did not follow these stories. So it took almost 100 more years until the archaeological research was structured.
It is currently part of the Tikal National Park, a site listed by UNESCO as one of the world heritage sites. Tikal is a popular tourist destination in Guatemala and one of the most fascinating and fun Mayan sites to visit, largely due to its remoteness, but also because of its jungle setting. The closest cities are Flores and Santa Elena, about 30 kilometers away.
Access : Coordinates: 17.221944, -89.623611 /
- Today Tikal is the main attraction in Guatemala and world famous. George Lucas used the view from Temple IV in his first Star Wars film (Star Wars IV).
- Top sights in Tikal : large square. Flanked on the east and west sides by two large Templar pyramids / Northern Acropolis. Together with the large square, it is one of the most studied architectural groups in the Maya area. It contained around sixteen temples and temple 33, the largest, is around 30 meters high. / Central Acropolis. A complex of buildings just south of the large square./ Great Pyramid of the Mundo Perdido . It is the largest ceremonial complex / Stele museum. / Sylvanus G. Morley Museum / Temple I (Temple of the Great Jaguar). 48 meters high. / Temple II (Temple of the Masks). Almost 40 meters high. / Temple III (Temple of the High Priest). 55 meters high. / Temple IV (Temple of the Two-Headed Serpent). The tallest temple in the park measures 64 m. / Temple V. 58 meters high. / Temple VI (Temple of the Inscriptions).
Go next : Ishkun , an archaeological site of the Mayan civilization of the Petén Basin region / Flores , Petén.