By far, the best thing to do in Guatemala City is the Museo Nacional de Arquelogía y Etnología because it has everything you could want in a Central American Museum. This museum contains the largest collection of Mayan artifacts in the world, and man, are they amazing!
Museo Nacional de Arqueología y Etnología
This museum was actually created in the late 1800’s when the government began to realize the importance of preserving their ancient culture. Throughout the years, many have contributed to the museum, making it such an amazing collection of historical pieces and a fascinating way to spend an afternoon in Guatemala City.
Why It’s One of the Best Things to Do in Guatemala City:
Here’s a quick run-down of all of the reasons why this is an AMAZING way to spend your time while you’re visiting Guatemala city.
1. They have the largest collection of Mayan Artifacts in the WORLD
There are literally thousands of artifacts in this building. They range from tiny little arrowheads to HUGE carved stones like the monument that they ran into in the movie “El Dorado.”
2. It has real, preserved skeletons
The museum itself contains five different skeletons. Each of them are amazing in their own right. One of them was a skeleton that had melded with the ground, so they cut up the ground and brought it with them. One was a skeleton that was found bone by bone, but was incomplete. And the most heart-breaking, is a skeleton of a mother who died giving birth to her twins. Both twins’ skeletons are laid alongside her.
The skeletons are amazing because they remind you that the Mayans were real people too and experienced death like the rest of us. It’s a cool connection to this past that seems so distant and lost.
3. They have ancient animal bones too
There was even a wooly mammoth tooth/section of the jaw! How amazing is that? They are HUGE. Like, one tooth was the size of my head.
4. The Characters are VERY Body-Positive
Mayans were incredible sculptures. This means that many of their artifacts were preserved because they were made of stone. They loved to decorate their temples and homes with sculptures of people. These are some of my favorites:
5. They even have historical sports
Again, I’m mentioning “El Dorado.” Personally, I love that movie, and if you haven’t watched it before, you should. In the movie, they play this game where they have to get a ball through a tiny, round stone circle. I thought that this game was completely made up for the movie, but I have been proven wrong! This museum even showcases one of the goals used for the sport. So cool.
El Museo Nacional de Arqueología y Etnología is amazing, especially for history lovers like me. It is one of the best, and most informative, things to do in Guatemala City. It also lets you in on how a relatively secret, ancient civilization once lived.
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