Lubaantun Archaeological Site

Category
Attraction
Type of Attraction
Archaeological Site, Landmark
District/Region
Toledo

Description
Highlights
  • Unique Architecture Style
  • History
  • Ceremonial Center

About Location
Lubaantun is known as "Place of the Fallen Stones" in Maya. This archaeological site is quite peculiar as the style of architecture is most distict, and unusual, from other archaeological sites in Belize. Located in about two miles from the San Pedro Columbia Village in the Toledo District, the structures there are constructed from black slate instead of limestone and the corner stones of them are rounded rather than sharp.
 
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150
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125
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Southern Belize is home to some of the most important ceremonial centers of the region. Lubantun is Mayan for "Place of the Fallen Stones," noted for its unusual and finest style of ... moreconstruction in the Maya World. An administrative, religious, political and commercial center, mainly used for occasional festivals, ball games and other sacred ceremonies. An abundance of ceramic whistle figurines (charm stones) or ritual-accompanying accouterments and tombs have been found here. The center of this site is on a large artificially raised platform between two small rivers, noted that the situation is well-suited for military defense. The large pyramids and residences are made of large stone blocks with no visible mortar binding them together, primarily black slate rather than the limestone typical of the region. Unlike other Maya sites, the existing structures are solid with no doorways and rounded corners, unique features not found in other sites of the region. The buildings on top of the pyramids are believed to have been made from perishable materials rather than masonry and hence do not remain. The famous yet controversial crystal skull was supposedly discovered here in 1926. Anna Mitchell-Hedges, the adoptive daughter of archaeologist Fredrick A. Mitchell-Hedges claimed that she had found the ‘crystal skull’ here during her father’s second trip to Belize, an expedition for her seventeenth birthday. This perfectly shaped 8-inch human skull crystal is still owned by Anna who lives in Canada. The origin of the crystal skull still remains a mystery. After exploring Lubantun we enjoy a traditional lunch at a local restaurant in the area, then we explore Nimli Punit. This small Mayan site dates back to the late classic period and is regarded as a ceremonial center. Its name is derived from a carving on one of the site's twenty-six stelae, the highest concentration found in Belize and the Mayan world, which depicts a figure wearing a large headdress. During recent excavations, the second-largest, single jade artifact found in Belize was discovered here amongst many other relics. In the Kekchi Maya dialect, Nimli Punit translates to "big hat." The monument on which this carving appears is the largest stelae found to date in Belize and the second largest in the Mayan World. It is situated atop the foothills of the southern part of the Maya Mountains. Walkthrough the ruins and learn of the customs and traditions of this ancient civilization!
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