C A R A C O L       

Adventurous visitors can visit the partially excavated Mayan city of Caracol, the largest Mayan ruin site in Belize.

Archeologists estimate that Caracol had 35,000 buildings, three times the buildings found in Guatemala's Tikal. The site covers five square miles. More than 150,000 people lived there.

From hieroglyphics found on stelae (stones) in Caracol, archaeologists believe Caracol's army defeated the army of Tikal in AD 562, and became the most powerful in the region.

Royalty, including women were buried in what were clearly royal tombs.

The name Caracol is Spanish for "snail shell" and was given because of the large numbers of snail shells found there.

Caracol Today

Caracol is open during the dry month with a permit from the Archeology Department in Belmopan. Most local travel agents can arrange for guided tours, as can the resorts in the Cayo District. Visitors can also go on their own

Some resorts offer trips to Caracol on horseback. There is no food, gasoline or drinking water there so visitors must pack in all they will need. Caracol is in the middle of miles of uninhabited virgin rainforest and is considered to be a great location for observing every variety of Belizean jungle creature.

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