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Photo album by eirekay: Tikal - a Mayan City of Splendor

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Tikal - a Mayan City of Splendor

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Tikal is the largest Mayan city yet discovered in Mesoamerica. Some 23 square miles, it contains over 2,500 structures and is thought to have housed 250,000 people. To explore Tikal takes several days, much of it still remaining unexcavated. Walking down the main causeways, one sees the remains of structures right and left, still covered in vegetation. The city was once stuccoed and painted in bright oranges and blues, all trees removed except for ornamental gardens. Quarries became reservoirs, collecting rain water for the growing population. Tikal was founded in 300bc, but abandoned in 900ad. Many archaeologists believe that the population outgrew the ability of the surrounding environment to support it. An air of mystery surrounds the city as you climb its many temples and look out at the rain forest which encloses it.

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