Caracol Natural Monument Reservation

Mayan Sites in Belize: Caracol

One of the best Mayan sites in Belize, Caracol, is deep in the heart of the Chiquibul Forest Reserve. The reserve is located at the base of the Maya Mountains in the Cayo District in Western Belize.

Covering an area of nearly 25,000 acres, Caracol is one of the largest Mayan sites. Impressive not only in size, it also has an immense agricultural field system and elaborate city planning. Caracol is one of the most pristine and well-kept Maya sites in Belize. If you want to see an incredible piece of our history, head to Caracol in Belize. 

Numerous carved monuments establish that Caracol was a major player in the geopolitics of the Maya civilization. Caracol was an ally of Calakmul in Campeche, Mexico and engaged in several wars with neighboring polities, such as Tikal, Naranjo and Ucanal in Guatemala.

Is Caracol Worth Visiting?

Caracol in Belize is worth the trip for those looking to step back in time. Visitors can experience the Classic Period, often considered the peak of Mayan civilization. Caracol includes many unique structures, including the main temple, Canaã, which means “Sky Palace”. 

Canaã offers incredible views of the surrounding jungle. An architectural marvel, it was built by the Mayan people using limestone blocks that were transported from nearby quarries. It is believed that the Caana was used as a ceremonial center for religious events and royal gatherings.

At 143 feet high, it is the tallest manmade structure in Belize.  The ancient Maya created not only a spectacular structure, but also incorporated excellent acoustics. Priests and rulers could use their normal speaking voices and be heard clearly by the masses assembled in the plaza below.

A close up of the Belize Maya Ruins
A close up of the Belize Maya Ruins
Side view of the Maya archaeological site Caracol
A wide shot of the Mayan ruins in Caracol Belize