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Lamanai
Lamanai

Lamanai

Free admission

The Basics

Lamanai consists of ceremonial pyramids, open-air plazas, a ball court, and other remnants of an ancient Maya civilization. Most tours of the archaeological complex start at the on-site museum to learn about the history of the Maya civilization before heading to the Jaguar Temple, part of which is carved into the shape of the jungle cat. Squint hard enough and you might be able to spot it.

Next is the High Temple, which rises above the treetops and offers panoramic views from its summit. Finally, visit the Mask Temple, which is adorned with a 13-foot (4-meter) limestone mask of an ancient Maya king. Much of Lamanai still remains concealed under dense jungle growth, with the restoration and evacuation of the site focused on these three large structures.

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Lamanai and the New River Safari in Belize
Lamanai and the New River Safari in Belize
star-4.5
$192.00 per adult
Traveler Favorite
River safari
Our guide for the Mayan ruins walking tour was extremely pleasant and knowledgeable. The boat captain on the river was as well. Very worthwhile tour!!!
Diane M, Jul 2018

Recent reviews from experiences in Belize City

star-5
Fantastic
William_P, Jun 2021
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
Alberto was awesome. The boat ride to and from was great. He took his time and pointed out wildlife, birds a d gave a history lesson of the area. He did a fabulous job at the Lamanai Ruins explaong everything and answered a plethora of questions. It was a great experience.
star-5
Great mian country trip.
samedollar, Jun 2021
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
Good trip. Learn a lot about the mayan cultures. Saw one big howler monkey family in backdrop of howler monkey that was amazing. Also out guide junior was amazing as howler monkey whisperer. Food was amazing home made. Wish we would have explored more wildlife on boat ride but all in all great trip.
star-4
Special experience- overpriced
Nomad57112720900, Mar 2019
Lamanai and the New River Safari in Belize
Beautiful experience we booked in advance of travel to Belize. Would advise all travelers to book upon artival: tour operators are many and many good ones plus a lot you can arrange on your own. Nearly $250pp for this outing was too much. Find a river transportation and learn about Lamanai by reading and park rangers.
star-4
Joe M
GfeMjoem, Jan 2020
Lamanai and the New River Safari in Belize
Excellent. Temple superb, walk thru jungle excellent. Staff knowledgeable about history, animals, fun.
star-4
Great temples im a overfilled place
Marcel_C, Feb 2020
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
Excellent guy who especially had the timing under control amd secured that we had place at the spots in Laminai who was totally overloaded by huge cruise tourist group. The boat tour of totally almost 3 hours was too long
star-4
Mayan River cruise
nancysummers, Jan 2020
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
Our guide Emir was extremely knowledgeable, friendly, and answered a ton of questions. Lunch was homemade and delicious. The river cruise was fun and got to enjoy lots of wildlife and learn about the beautiful scenery. We saw the howler monkeys once we arrived on shore. I highly recommend this tour to learn about Mayan history and culture. They were an amazing cultivation.
star-5
The guides, the tour in the River and pyramids, the food
Ariadna_U, Jan 2020
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
So great!!!! The guides were so funny and educated about the área! Everything was on time and well prepared. Food was delicious too!!!
star-5
Excellent tour Lamanai Tour
Phyllis_H, Nov 2018
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
This was a fabulous tour. Alberto was our tour guide for the river boat and the ruins tour...he was great. Lunch was also fantastic! We would highly recommend this.
star-5
Wonderful
William_L, Mar 2019
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
This was the second time I went on this expedition. The first time was 12 years ago. It was awesome then but probably better this time because the guide was so much more compelling and fun. Last time I went alone. This time I brought a freind knowing it was worth repeating. My friend also thought our guide was fun and informative.
star-5
Wonderful day!
Richelle_C, Jan 2019
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
We loved our day! Taxi pick up from the water taxi terminal was easy. Our river guide Carlos was fantastic. Super informative. It was the perfect mix of river ruins and hiking. Excellent trip.
star-5
Excellent tour
Madeline_W, Jan 2019
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
This was a fun and adventurous tour. We had Nate as our tour guide! He is wonderful! Thank you for a memorable day.
star-5
Lamanai Eco Tours
KatR, Mar 2020
Lamanai Temples, River Cruise Bird watching, Monkeys
We used VIV tours for this trip. VIV tours only provided the ride to and from the venue. The driver was nice, on time to hotel and knowledgable but I tried to reach out to them via email and phone call before the trip because I had a specific question and they did not return my call or numerous emails. So that wasn't great. The big review which is an A+ is for Lamanai Eco-Cruises. This is the company VIV used to take our river cruise. Our guide/captain was Collin. I can't say enough good things about him. He stopped to point out birds and other wildlife on the way down the 25 mile river. Knew all about the birds, trees and plants. Stopped to point out the Mennonite village on the way to Lamanai. Collin new so much about the ruins and Mayan culture. Again....he also pointed out medicinal trees and plants along the walk through the ruins. We saw a family of the howler monkeys in the park walking along the canopy of the trees in the forest. Lunch was a simple picnic of rice/beans, plantains and chicken stew. Bathrooms at Lamanai were clean and working. Took the slow scenic route to Lamanai and enjoyed a very fast ride on the way back. Collin is a great boat captain and knows the river like the back of his hand. A good guide makes all the difference on these cruises. Cross your fingers that you get Collin.He was terrific. I went with my teenage daughter and she enjoyed the tour. There were other families with younger people who also enjoyed it.

Things to Know Before You Go

  • Nature lovers will enjoy spotting exotic birds and howler monkeys at the archaeological site.

  • The High Temple features a wooden staircase that winds around the back of the pyramid, making it easier to climb to the top.

  • Many tours combine a trip to the ruins with a riverboat ride along New River, providing more opportunities to spot local wildlife.

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How to Get There

From Belize City, you can hop a bus from the local station to Orange Walk. From there, you’ll need to grab a taxi because Lamanai is located about 30 miles (48 kilometers) from the town of Orange Walk. An easier option: Tours from Belize City offer transportation directly to the site or to the New River in Orange Walk, where you’ll take an hourlong boat ride up to Lamanai.

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When to Get There

Lamanai is open from 8am to 5pm daily. When cruise ships dock in Belize City, Lamanai can get crowded, so check the schedule and plan accordingly if your dates are flexible. Keep in mind that the rainy season (typically from June to November) may interfere with the riverboat ride. Late November to mid-April is dry season in Belize, and that’s when you’ll experience the most pleasant weather.

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Altun Ha

Another Maya archaeological site in Belize, Altun Ha is located a little more than two hours away from Lamanai and is divided into Plaza A and Plaza B. In Plaza B, the Temple of Masonry Altar is believed to have been the main religious center of the civilization. It’s also home to a giant piece of jade carved into the shape of the head of the Maya sun god Kinich Ahau.

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