Tazumal maya site

09 de Octubre 2015

A 85 kilometers from San Salvador, less than an hour´s journey to Chalchuapa, Santa Ana, Tazumal preserved Mayan structures of considerable size and an archaeological museum with valuable relics of the era including highlight stories of the ritual.

Tazumal maya site
Major archaeological excavations of El Salvador start at this place called Tazumal Chalchuapa located in the department of Santa Ana at 85 kilometers from the capital. The findings suggest that most Tazumal site occupancy was about Classic period.

The American archaeologist Stanley H. Bogss would direct the surveys and excavations in the 1940s and gave fruit to several buried structures that can be appreciated to date.  The largest B1-1 was suggested to have hosted ceremonies and was maybe a power center of Chalchuapa. It was built during the Classic Period and holds records even important in the Postclassic. Traces suggest relationships with distant groups located in Mexico. This structure consists of more than eleven different building phases.


The west oriented staircases of Adobe and stone

Like the rest of the archaeological zone of El Salvador, Tazumal structures are composed mostly of mud, rock and compacted soil. Their finishes are not seen as solid as other Mayan structures found elsewhere in Mesoamerica that make more use of rock and even mortar.
West of this lies the Ethernet frames B1-2 made of stone and earth which identify five overlapping buildings.

The structures show their access stairs to the upper west oriented. Evidence suggests that there are yet more remains and buried structures nearby.

Styles associated with distant lands

After review and comparison of building styles in Tazumal it is detected a strong resemblance to buildings of Tula in Hidalgo state, Mexico, and it wasan old Toltec capital. Although the rise of Tazumal is located in the Classic Period findings, on the site are quite different from what is recorded about this period architecturally.

During the excavations they found two bodies lying in proximity of coal and ceramic vessels. They correspond to a child and an adult who lived around 770 AD and the 1,000 A.D. according to studies of carbon 14.

Xipe Totec of Clay in Tazumal

Perhaps the most beautiful piece that is displayed in the archaeological museum is Tazumal's Xipe Totec.

This is a deity whose beauty and mud is detailed in contrast to its concept: Xipe Totec means "our lord the skinned".   According to archaeologists the celebration to honor the story of the ritual was carried out from Mexico to Panama. During its holiday, killing and skinning a selection of slaves and captives to their god Xipe Totec covered with the skin of the victims.
The Spanish were still finding practices of this celebration and were horrified by the offset and imposed the worship of the cross.

Getting to Tazumal

From San Salvador, El Salvador's capital, it is 85 kilometers to drive to the border into Guatemala from the CA1. After passing through Santa Ana one continues to find Chalchuapa whose clear and visible road signs to the archaeological site.

If you travel from Guatemala to El Salvador take the Border The Chinamas by the CA8 and thus reach Chalchuapa Ahuachapán and then you will reach the archaeological site.

Being a famous tourist destination and most visited, it is found that the route is well signposted and easy to get to. All the entrances are well paved and in good condition.

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Arqueología El Salvador