The Mayan civilization was one of the most developed humanity has ever seen. It developed and occupied an area of approximately 324,000 square kilometers that, in addition to the current nations of Mexico, Belize, El Salvador and Honduras, included most, if not all, the departments of the current Guatemalan territory.
In these countries, and throughout their entire territorial extension, the Maya built numerous architectural works such as roads, squares and slightly more ambitious projects like their great and majestic palaces and temples. The distinctive remains of this ancient civilization have survived the passage of centuries and the inclemency of natural phenomena; and, thanks to multiple archaeological explorations, they have proven the great artistic and intellectual development that the ancient Maya archived.
The remains of several buildings have been preserved over time; Tikal, located in Petén, is an example. The development of Tikal as an urban center might be due to its location in the heart of the Mayan world, where the main trading routes converged.
The Maya developed great artistic skills. They decorated some objects with special designs as well as the graves of their dead. Vessels, masks, jade jewelry and other objects have been found in the tombs of their rulers. Engravings with various designs have been identified inside the larger temples.
Tikal was recognized as a World heritage Site by UNESCO in 1979. Mayan culture is kept alive, today, through different traditions such as textile art.