The Mayan civilization did leave behind some marvelous monuments reminding us of their presence. The Tikal temple is the ruins of a city built by the Mayan rulers rising about 47 meters above the earth. The ruins were discovered in a rain forest in Guatemala.
The site stands out with the distinction of being one of the most important sites from the archaeological point of view of the Mayan civilization. The Tikal National Park encloses the archaeological site.
Tikal was important for the Mayans from the point of view of their politics, their economy, and even for their military conquests. Whatever little of Tikal can be seen today is only a small part of what it originally was. Tikal's population is believed to have been spread over an area of 47 square miles.
As revealed by the hieroglyphs deciphered in recent times, the Mayans indulged in warfare and fought battles just like many other civilizations on earth. This is quite contrary to the belief of a peaceful way of life among the Mayans.
The descendants of the early Mayans have given a fresh momentum to the belief in the holiness of Tikal. There is a flow of pilgrims to Tikal and other sites in the vicinity. The descendants of the Mayans have lost some of the special features typical to their ancestors like the ability to read what their ancestors wanted to communicate. They have had to bear the onslaught of the Catholic Church in the 16th and 17th centuries and several tyrants and dictators who wanted them effaced from earth.