Altun-Ha and Belize City Overview
Explore Altun Ha Mayan Ruins
Escape the large buses and the crowds that come on them on the Altun-Ha and Belize City Overview tour. As you drive for approximately 1 hour through the countryside to reach the site, your Belize tour guide will tell you of the mysterious and mystical Mayans.
The Altun-Ha (Mayan for stone water) area was first populated in 1000 B.C. and the city was expanded in A.D. 700. It is believed to have had a population of 3,000. Many high-status items, including jade recovered at the site, indicate the city was home to many wealthy citizens. Structure B4 revealed a richly furnished tomb of one of Altun-Ha's rulers, and among its contents is the largest jadeite sculpture yet found. It represents Kinich Ahau, the Mayan sun god. Weighing in at almost nine pounds, this has been Belize's most valuable find to date. Other tombs contained jadeite objects as well.
Excavations indicate that this center was part of a trade network that reached from the Caribbean coast to the central lowlands of Guatemala. The site covers an area of about five square miles. The central square mile of the site has remains of around 500 structures, the largest of which, the Temple of the Masonry Altars, is 54 feet high.
After your tour of Altun-Ha, you will travel back to Belize City where you will see historical sites such as St. John's Cathedral, where Kings from the Mosquito Coast were crowned, and the colonial mansion once occupied by British governors. This Belize tour concludes at the Belize Tourism Village.
Reviewer: Ken Fowler
Our tour guide, Ms. Joyce, was very informative, engaging, knowledgeable; all that you would expect from a professional tour. Belize City is charming along the waterfront but very third world with bumpy roads. The ride out to Altun-Ha was made enjoyable with our guide's knowledge of the country. The site of Altun-Ha was beautifully kept and fun to tour. The climb to the top of the temples was made easier and safer with hand rails. At 74, I was hesitant to climb to the top of the taller (52 feet) temple, but was rewarded with wonderful panoramic views of this site. This tour was worth our time.
Reviewer: R Gonzales
We had a great time going to see the Ruins of Altun-Ha. It was very interesting to to hear the history of the Ruins and the city of Belize. We got to go to the local markets to buy homemade items. The area was so nice I really had a great time.
A wonderful tour! We had a great guide, and a small group. This was our favorite part of our vacation! Thank you!
Reviewer: Alok Gupta
Our tour guide was exceptional in his hospitality and knowledge of the area. Beside showing us the various sites he also talked about the native flora and fauna, stopping at places to point out unique trees and birds. Altun-Ha was simply amazing. I have been to other Maya Ruins but this was unique in that it was a complete story of a settlement. It's a marvel how people of that era were able to construct such tall structures with huge pieces of stones. The guide knew detailed history of the people,how they lived, how the kings ruled and native medicines etc. Very rewarding trip for us and our teen age boys.