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“Discover the awe-inspiring legacy of Tonina, an intriguing archaeological marvel only two hours from San Cristobal and close to the bustling city of Ocosingo. Majority of this site was unveiled to the world only in the recent past, its secrets unearthed during the 70s, 80s, and 90s. The crowning glory of Tonina, its acropolis, towers an impressive 70 metres over the central plaza, ranking among the loftiest structures in the ancient Mayan world.

One cannot help but marvel at the acropolis, which reveals in stark detail the ruthless prowess of Tonina. A haunting stucco sculpture, 16 by 4 metres, narrates a chilling tale of conflict, depicting a skeletal death god brandishing the severed head of a Palenque lord.

Tonina holds a unique place in Mayan history, its monuments bearing the last known Long Count date, marking the conclusion of the Classic Maya period in AD 909. Renowned for its belligerence during the Late Classic period, Tonina harnessed warfare to forge a formidable kingdom. Throughout its turbulent history, Tonina was locked in sporadic conflicts with Palenque, its fiercest rival and the then-dominant political force in the west of the Maya region. Despite the odds, Tonina eventually rose to become the leading city in the west.

The region is also home to several other notable Mayan sites that are well worth exploring. Bonampak, ensconced in the heart of the Lacandon Rainforest, offers an immersive cultural experience. Chinkultic, with its stunning Mayan temple poised majestically above a deep blue cenote, promises breathtaking views. Located near Comitan, Chinkultic can be combined with a day trip to the serene Los Lagos de Montebello lakes, rounding off a truly enchanting journey into the heart of Mayan history.”