To continue from my earlier post, Exploring Tikal in Guatemala, there is another magical section worth visiting that includes its own unique architecture and atmosphere. Known as Mundo Perdido, or the Lost World, it is an expansive complex of 38 structures that covers an area of approximately 646,000 square feet with a layout that is in harmony with the cycles of Venus, the Sun, the solstices and the equinoxes. It is also one of the oldest ensembles of Mayan structures solely dedicated to the observation of the stars.
The top attraction within the complex is structure 5C-54, which is also known as the Great Pyramid of the Lost World (seen in above photo). This pyramid dates back to 500 B.C., and with a height of 105 feet, it was once one of the tallest pyramids in the Mayan region. It still consists of incredibly steep stairways on all four sides with a flat summit that once held a structure decorated masks of the Sun God. You can just imagine groups of Mayans observing the stars and praying to the Sun God for thankfulness of their good fortune.
|Photo by Douglas Reynolds|
Located just toward the east is a long terrace that includes three temples that were formerly used to observe the stars and mark the time for visual observations throughout the year. Inside the three temples were six tombs for the royal members of Jaguar Paw, who ruled in the 4th century but lost their power after an internal (and violent) dispute in A.D. 378.
|Talud-Tablero Style (photo by David Germain)|
|Aerial Photo by Tikal Park|
For more information about Tikal, read my post: Exploring Tikal in Guatemala.