Xunantunich is one of the many Belize Mayan Ruins Tours located a few minutes away from San Ignacio. This was the first Mayan site to be opened for visitors in 1950, because of its proximity to San Ignacio. Extensive archaeological work has been carried out at the site providing a wealth of historical information about the Mayas.
It was known to be a major ceremonial center during the Mayan Classical period (600 to 900 AD). El Castillo (The Castle) is the most prominent temple and stands a majestic 130 feet high. The East and West sides are pretty well decorated with friezes depicting art of this astonishing civilization.
Known as the “maiden of the rock” or “stone lady” is a classic period ceremonial center. The site core covers only 300 square meters but the periphery covers several square kilometers. The structure “El Castillo” is the second tallest structure in Belize and reaches a height of 130 feet above plaza level. The lower temple is famous its large stucco frieze, on both east and west end. It flourished in the terminal period 700 to 900 A.D. about the time of the Maya collapse.
It is located on the Western Highway across the village of San Jose Succotz. A hand cranked ferry will take us to Xunantunich, an experience on it's own. A one mile hike on paved pathway is required. Climbing to the top of the temple provides an amazing view of the entire valley. You could see 5ft. Iguana and beautiful birds and Passion flower blossoms.
Tour includes transportation, guide, entrance fees and lunch. Private and custom tours can be arranged and special occasions that may include marriage proposals and family celebrations.
What To Bring
- Walking shoes.
- Bug repellent.
- 1.5 to 2 hour tour.
- Walking up hill to the ruin and some climbing the main temple (optional) is necessary.
- This tour is led by experienced guides who provide interesting information on the Maya history, flora.