Endangered ancient Maya sites saved
Tropical and picturesque, it is a place that tourists would likely want to wander through. Known as ‘Tamarindo’, it takes its name from the numerous tropical trees that grow there. Situated next to the beautiful and immense New River Lagoon in northern Belize, it also features remains of an ancient Maya settlement. The site, not far from the better-known great Maya center of Lamanai, remains largely unexplored and unexcavated by archaeologists. Situated as it is in a location that gave its ancient inhabitants strategic access to important coastal trade routes, there is little doubt that archaeologists and other scientists will one day uncover significant finds in this place, once full-scale excavations begin.
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But those excavations wouldn’t be possible if it were not for the recent purchase of 83.6 acres of land along the Lagoon by members of the Board of the Maya Research Program (MRP). Tamarindo was an important part of that purchase. It is the latest in a series of land acquisitions that the MRP hopes will shelter and conserve ecology and invaluable archaeological treasures that otherwise would soon be lost or destroyed as developers clear land for agricultural purposes. Numerous sites in this area have already been negatively impacted by agricultural development.