Belize Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) Cave Tour
ATM Cave Tour
Taking a journey into the Mayan underworld at Actun Tunichil Muknal, or the “Cave of the Stone Sepulchre”, will be one of the most enlightening, epic, and unique experiences of your life. Leave the world of the living behind as you venture into the heart of the ATM Cave with your licensed guide. Recently deemed the #1 Sacred Cave destination in the world by National Geographic, the ATM cave is not only beautiful geologically, with its crystalline stalactites and stalagmites, but also historically, as is a natural museum of ancient Mayan artifacts, as well as a sacred burial place. This is the final resting place of the “Crystal Maiden”, an ancient Mayan ceremonial victim, as well as the remains of 13 other sacrificed men, women, and children. MayaWalk guides have led government officials, National Geographic teams, the Discovery Channel, The British High Commission, and US Embassy officials into the ATM Cave.
This sacrificial site is accessed by approximately an hour drive from our office in San Ignacio. Here we enter the Tapir Mountain Nature Reserve and park our vehicles at the ranger post. From this point on we are on foot, hiking through the jungle for approximately 45 minutes to the entrance of the cave. The hike includes three stream crossings. To access the cave, we swim across a small spring-fed pool with the assistance of a rope and wade into knee-high water into the dark underworld of the cave that allows us access to the extensive underground maze of tunnels, passageways and chambers, climaxing in the ceremonial chamber housing stoneware, ceramics and the famed crystallized skeleton of the “Crystal Maiden”. We spend approximately 3 hours in the cave under the instruction of our experienced guides.
Leave your cameras behind and experience the power of ancient spirits with your mind, body, and soul. This is not only a physical adventure, but a journey into the spiritual realm. We enter back into the jungle world and hike to our vehicles, where we relax and enjoy a homemade picnic lunch, with water and soft drinks, before driving back to San Ignacio.