Marco Gonzalez Maya Site

Marco Gonzalez Maya Site, San Pedro: Hours, Address, Marco Gonzalez Maya Site Reviews: 3.5/5

Marco Gonzalez Maya Site
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
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A 2000 year old Mayan Archaeological Reserve. A jungle experience while touring this almost "virgin" site. No temples here. But the recent clearing of the house sites will give you a sense of the life of the Maya Traders.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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184 reviews
Very good

Helena, MT35 contributions
Oct 2013 • Couples
We are really, really glad we went here. It's way off the beaten path - the golf cart ride is slow and treacherous - but that was part of the adventure! We didn't have much gumption to leave the Caye during our vacation, so we appreciated getting a taste of the jungle on the mainland. That being said, be prepared - don't wear swimwear! We were a little under-prepared. The next time we go we will definitely wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, a hat/bandana, and shoes with good traction. Bring bug spray and water! It's hotter at the site than in the open air, no breeze. Watch out for bugs, slippery footing, and poisonwood trees. The boardwalk is a little treacherous, but again - adventure! We would recommend a tetanus shot before you go (we're not being sarcastic) and honestly, I kind of wished I would've taken the malaria pills after I got several mosquito bites (but I'm in the clear and malaria is really rare on Ambergris). We were attacked by tiny, aggressive ants - watch out for those, the bites sting and they are persistent!

But it was awesome! Crazy to be in such an untouched, primitive site, walking through pottery shards and ancient conch shells. The interpretation signs are coming along. Try to get a tour from the caretaker if possible. We ran into him in the site - he was wielding a machete - we were glad to find him and also realize he wasn't a machete wielding bandit, but the caretaker (haha). He gave us a personal tour that was invaluable. Make sure to pay your fee to visit - and donate extra if you can - this is a rare site and one that should be safely developed. Your donation will help that! This was one of our favorite things that we did - be prepared, have a mind for adventure, and go enjoy!
Written November 23, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Hinton, Canada17 contributions
Dec 2012 • Friends
Imagine walking through an historical site and actually picking up pot shards! That's what happened to us here. This site is fascinating and will get better the more it is excavated. We actually found pot shards and chert chips that we gathered and placed an the many platforms meant just for this.

You need a golf cart or for the really tough people bicycles (hot work on a hot day) to get to this site near the southern tip of the Caye. The boardwalk is made from driftwood and pallets but does the trick to keep you out of the wet. Watch for bird life and tree snakes, along with a crocodile on your trek thru the marshy area out to the site.

If you have even the slightest interest in history be sure to include this excursion on your to do list.
Written June 18, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Ken V
Toronto, Canada58 contributions
Dec 2016 • Friends
We had heard about the Marco Gonzalez Mayan site and my wife located the website, so we made contact with Jan Brown who we arranged a tour with at an extremely modest price. Jan, is among other things, the manager of the site and head of the local archeological society. She very generously offered an additional seat to another guest from our hotel who showed an interest. She had forewarned us to wear pants, long sleeves and have some repellent on hand as the mosquitoes were persistent in the jungle. Jan is a vibrant woman with a great passion for preserving history which seems under threat from development and general indifference.

We had time to get to know Jan better on the bumpy 45 min. ride to Marcos Gonzales. She has been here for a dozen years and seems to know many people on the island, likely from all her community involvement. She is extremely knowledgable about the site and has worked with the archeologists on the digs. Clearing the encroachment from the jungle and preserving the site is a huge job and Jan is assisted by Jerry and his son in this labour of love.

We first viewed some artifacts in the visitors centre, then headed out on the boardwalk (made of reclaimed lumber) through the mangrove. There was lots of wildlife and we quickly spotted a little blue heron on the boardwalk. The water had a red colour due tannins produced by the red mangrove. We emerged at the entrance to the forest and got a brief botany lesson on the properties of the local trees, a good thing too, as one is poisonous even to the touch.

I would describe the site as extensive with the remains of 40+ structures but as they were made of perishable materials only the foundations remain. The ground is carpeted with pot shards, chert for tools, conch shells even the occasional human bone and a table displaying interesting finds stands in the main plaza. There is quite a large population of hermit crabs occupying the plaza and I spotted the tracks of a big cat in the sticky mud. I found the whole experience quite educational and truly appreciated Jan's passion and expertise. This is not to be mistaken for a ride at Disneyland, it is however an opportunity to see and learn from some unique, local history. We spent about 4 hours but this was our choice. I would have rated it 5/5 but for the roads and mosquitoes.
Written December 31, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Paul T
1 contribution
Jun 2022
I think this site should be removed from any kind of listing until serious improvements are mad. The entrance is in shambles. The trail is in serious disrepair. I made it about 50 yards in before the boardwalk had given way. The mosquitos were bad, but I was forewarned on that. I appreciate history and was sad I couldn't see any of it as far as I got. The one redeeming aspect of taking the time to go there was seeing an Ibis.
Written June 26, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Mike H
Plano, TX86 contributions
Nov 2021 • Solo
Don’t blink or you’ll miss the entrance, way down at the southern end of Ambergris Caye. The quarter-mile boardwalk to the actual site is in a sorry state of affairs and I had to jump over several large gaps where the wood had rotted away. The site itself is a couple of bare mud clearings with no discernible sign of Mayan civilization.
Written November 9, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Seattle, WA8 contributions
Mar 2013 • Couples
This place is probably pretty cool to spend some time looking around in, but my wife and I couldn't spend more than about 3 minutes there as we were getting eaten alive by mosquitos. The ruins aren't like some of the other sites in Belize with large pryamids so you'll really have to want to see it.

Wear long sleeves/pants and bring lots of bug spray.

Or just skip it... and do a trip to the mainland.
Written April 8, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Philadelphia, PA7 contributions
Aug 2013 • Couples
Not worth it at all. It is an active excavation is like half of Belize. There are scientists there digging a hole in the ground. But is it a solid 45 min via golf cart down a very bumpy road, then a 1/4 mile walk though mosquito infested mangrove. You MUST HAVE LONG PANTS AND A LONG SLEEVED SHIRT. + weapons grade DEET. no where else on the island was it buggy. But literally you are walking through the swamp. Would not recommend it.
Written September 27, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Mary Butz
Charleston, SC99 contributions
Sep 2012 • Friends
Absolutely stunning! If you visit Belize, be sure to not miss this and climb to the top of the temple where you can see into Guatemala. Such a beautiful part of history....
Written September 17, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Port Mansfield, TX4 contributions
Aug 2012 • Family
My family was fortunate enough to take a tour of this site, thanks to the wonderful tour guide Jan Brown, during our recent dive vacation to Ambergris Caye. Jan was very knowledgeable about the site and full of information, answering our questions and guiding us patiently through the area. We would recommend this for anyone who has the exploring 'bug". Be prepared for discovering a place like no other, suspended in time. Since it isn't developed and still in the early stages of discovery, don't expect many tourist or crowds.Please keep in mind that it is up to you to protect and preserve this area for future generations to learn from in reference to the Mayans way of life, and leave things as you find them. Scores of shards and pieces of pottery are scattered beneath the canopy. Overwhelming just to see just how much is on the surface, leaving to your imagination how much must be uncovered & what work lies ahead for Jan and her partners that are dedicated to this endeavor. Wear your hat, bring your bugspray,water, and get ready for a step back in time and a great learning experience! Thank You again Jan! In one word, Fantastic!
Written August 7, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Sarasota, FL69 contributions
Apr 2013 • Couples
This is a lovely site, small and unrestored, yet beautiful and surrounded by nature. The staff does a great job of maintaining and preserving it. It is a credit to the people of the island that they have preserved this area from development.
Written May 28, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Marco Gonzalez Maya Site

Marco Gonzalez Maya Site is open:
  • Mon - Sat 8:30 AM - 4:00 PM