Altun Ha, Belize

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My first postcard from Belize comes from Lando from Mexico who went on a trip there. 🙂

Altun Ha is the name given ruins of an ancient Maya city in Belize, located in the Belize District about 50 km north of Belize City and about 10 km west of the shore of the Caribbean Sea. The site covers an area of about 8 km square. The ruins of the ancient structures had their stones reused for residential construction of the agricultural village of Rockstone Pond in modern times, but the ancient site did not come to the attention of archeologists until 1963.

Altun Ha Ruins (Mayan for the “Rockstone Pond”) was a relatively small Mayan community, estimated from 3000-10,000 people but was affluent and important as a strategically located trading and ceremonial center. This site is well know for the discovery of the largest Mayan jade carving ever found. This solid jade head named Kinich Ahau (“The Sun God”) weighs nine pounds. Altun Ha dates back to 600BC and was an active Mayan town until 900AD, the end of the Mayan era.

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Honduras map

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My first postcard from Honduras comes from Cesar. 🙂

Honduras is a republic in Central America. It was at times referred to as Spanish Honduras to differentiate it from British Honduras, which became the modern-day state of Belize. The country is bordered to the west by Guatemala, to the southwest by El Salvador, to the southeast by Nicaragua, to the south by the Pacific Ocean at the Gulf of Fonseca, and to the north by the Gulf of Honduras, a large inlet of the Caribbean Sea.

Honduras was home to several important indigenous cultures, most notably the Maya. Much of the country was conquered by Spain which introduced its now predominant language and many of its customs in the sixteenth century. It became independent in 1821 and has been a republic since the end of Spanish rule.

The area of Honduras is about 112,492 km² and the population exceeds eight million. Its northern portions are part of the Western Caribbean Zone. Honduras is most notable for production of minerals, coffee, tropical fruit, sugar cane and recently for exporting clothing to the international market.