Tikal – Guatemala’s Mayan City

Tikal is one of the most accessible Mayan ruins in Guatemala and one of the largest.  On a wet afternoon we visited Tikal as part of a guided tour.  As it was raining we almost had the place to ourselves.

Tikal is one of the largest archaeological sites of a pre columbian Mayan civilization.  The site has an area greater than 16 square kilometres which includes over 3,000 structures.  We only saw a small part of the site which was around the main centre of the old city.  Below are some of the photos from our tour.

Complex Q – 771 AD – one of the two pyramids that form the complex

Complex Q consists of two pyramids across from one another and is the largest complex of this type at Tikal.  The complex dates from 771 AD.

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Walking down Complex Q


Rear of Temple I.  Temple I has a height of 47m.

Temple I is located on the main plaza of Tikal was completed around 740/750 AD and has a total height of 47 metres.  The temple is a funerary pyramid dedicated to Jasaw Chan K’awil, who was entombed in the structure.

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Katie watching over the Main Plaza

The Main Plaza was the centre of Tikal and it is an impressive sight.  In the photo above Katie is looking towards the front of Temple I.

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Another view over the Main Plaza
High level of detail in the brick work.

Many of the structures within Tikal have a high level of detail within the brick work as can be seen in the photo above.  The above image was taken of what is believed to be a market structure.  The high level of detail of the brick work suggests that Mayan’s we very proud of there commercial activities.

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Another view of the Main Plaza

The above image shows the true scale of the structures at Tikal.  We were both impressed by the size of the temples considering how old they are.

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Pedro and Michael enjoying Tikal

Tikal is a place worth visiting if you are in Northern Guatemala and is an impressive sight when you consider the scale and age of the temples.  We both enjoyed our afternoon here and felt that the rain added to the atmosphere of the place. Be warned on a sunny day it can be very hot here, so bring lots of water!

As mentioned above we went to Tikal as part of an organised tour.  This tour was organised through our hostel – Amigos Hostel, Flores.  The hostel website provides different options for visiting Tikal as well as prices. Enjoy!

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