Guayabo National Park and Monument, Turrialba

4.3
#2 of 8 in Historic Sites in Province of Cartago
Uncover the mysterious terrain of Guayabo National Park and Monument, the largest archaeological site in Costa Rica. Still largely un-excavated, the 232 ha (573.2 acre) site was once a thriving city, occupied as early as 1000 BC and inexplicably abandoned in 1400 CE. Weave your way through the remaining ruins of the city’s dwellings, aqueducts, and tombs, and keep an eye out for enchanting petroglyphs. A ramble around the mystical monument, surrounded by one of the last rainforests of its kind in Cartago, provides an authentic excursion into an ancient part of the country’s heritage. Before you head to Turrialba, plan trip itinerary details with our user-friendly Turrialba trip itinerary maker site , to make sure you see all that Turrialba has to offer, including Guayabo National Park and Monument.
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Guayabo National Park and Monument Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
339 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We picked the wrong day- there was a training session for all guides. But we were thankful that a guide came to accompany us despite missing part of her training. She was very knowledgeable and answer...  more »
  • Early in the morning, visit this national monument with our guide, very helpful. This site was discovered in 1968, during first excavations. These are far from finished, but a system of aqueducts has been discovered, with large reservoirs of water. This place has probably been occupied 1000 years BC, but the archaeological exhibits discovered attest the occupation of nearly 20,000 people in the year 800. We see a beautiful platform that was to accommodate the largest dwelling of the site, and many other platforms, as well as a large driveway. There are also petroglyphs representing a lizard and a Jaguar. This site is far from being completely discovered, and there will certainly be other nice surprises. The forest is superb, secondary forest, very large trees and vegetation on the ground, we have seen squirrels and monkeys. This site is interesting because it is unique in Costa Rica, and no one knows, for the moment, if the Spaniards had discovered it. It had to be a very large trade and Commerce Centre.
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