While Quiriguá can be explored independently, it’s rewarding to visit with a guide who can interpret the carvings and ruins. Quiriguá is typically visited in combination with Copán in neighboring Honduras—one of the most impressive Maya sites in Central America—as part of overnight tours from Antigua or Guatemala City. Tours often include round-trip transportation and accommodation. Many multi-day Maya-themed tours also stop at Quiriguá, as well as other major archaeological sites in Guatemala and Honduras, including Tikal, Yaxhá, and Copán.
Things to know before you go
- Quiriguá is hot, humid, and often drenched in heavy rain showers; bring a hat, sunscreen, and lots of water, as well as bug spray.
- Find informational plaques and restrooms at the site.
- Wear hiking boots as the ground can be muddy following rain.
How to get there
Buses running along the CA9 road between Guatemala City and Puerto Barrios will generally stop on the main road near the turn-off for Quiriguá on request. From there, minibuses, tuk-tuks, and motorbikes often wait to bring passengers to the archaeological site. If there are none present when you get off the bus, you’ll have to make the 2.5-mile (4-kilometer) walk on foot.
When to get there
The ruins are open daily from 8am to 6pm. Visit during early mornings before the temperatures reach their peak.
What to see at Quiriguá
The large stelae are the big draw to Quiriguá, but the site is also home to one of the largest Maya plazas ever discovered, as well as an acropolis. The base of the acropolis features highly stylized animal carvings, known as zoomorphs, representing both real and mythical creatures including jaguars, tortoises, and serpents.
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- Semuc Champey
- Lanquín Caves (Grutas de Lanquín)
- Biotopo del Quetzal
- Relief Map (Mapa en Relieve)
- Iglesia de Santo Domingo
- Plaza de la Constitución (Parque Central)
- Popol Vuh Museum (Museo Popol Vuh)
- La Aurora Zoo (Zoólogico la Aurora)
- National Palace
- National Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology (MUNAE)
- Metropolitan Cathedral (Catedral Metropolitana)
- Mixco Viejo
- IRTRA Mundo Petapa
- Pacaya Volcano
- Casa Santo Domingo (Monasterio de Santo Domingo)