It’s the end of the world as we know it. Or is it? Mayans say it is. Maybe.

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All we know is it makes a great excuse to go check out some of Central America’s most remarkable Mayan sites

The 21st day of the 12th month of the year AD 2012. Does that date sound familiar? We wouldn’t be surprised if it did. It’s the date the infamous Mayan calendar – the Maya Long Count Calendar to give it its full name – marks as an end. Or should we say, the end?

What will happen? What does this “end” mean? Some say it’s just the end of one 5,125-year cycle, where another will simply follow. Others think it signals the dawn of a new age. And of course much publicised doomsday sayers zealously hold it is the day the world will end.

All we know is it makes a great excuse to go check out some of Central America’s most remarkable Mayan sites (like in our featured image by mybulldog).

Tikal, Guatemala
Tikal, Guatemala. Photo by Tomas Cruz y Apellidos

Mayan archeological tour – Guatemala and Honduras, December 13-28
Eminent archaeologist David Sedat and Maya expert Jose Antonio Gonzalez lead a small, 16-day group tour that charts Mayan history and culture.

With visits to sites including Takali’k Abaj and Tikal in Guatemala and Copan in Honduras they will outline the beginnings of Maya civilisation with a specific focus on its calendar and hieroglyphics.

Chichicastenango and its cemetery
Chichicastenango and its cemetery. Photo by Mickaël T

End of the Maya Cycle and Festival of Santo Tomas – Guatemala and Honduras, December 11-23
Over the course of this 13-day tour Maya enthusiast Jorge Mario Rodriguez leads visits to famous Maya sites at Copan and Tikal as well as lesser-known sites such as Quirigua, Ceibal and Uaxactun. The tour also makes stops in the colonial city of Antigua and visits a local community by Lake Atitlan.

On the day of the end of the Mayan cycle, the tour stops in Chichicastenango, coinciding with the beginning of the town’s week-long celebration of their Patron Saint, Santo Tomas. There, visitors can expect to see colourful and lively celebrations and dances led by the indigenous Maya-Quiche.

Friese, El Castillo, Xunantunich, Belize
Friese, El Castillo, Xunantunich. Photo by cjuneau

The Maya Pyramids – Guatemala and Belize, November 13-28
Alternatively, you see the Maya world before the “end”. Under the expert guidance of Maya specialist David Drew, this small group tour explores the Maya archaeology with visits to spectacular Ancient Maya pyramids and palaces located deep in the Guatemala and Belize jungles.

Written by insider city guide series Hg2 | A Hedonist’s guide to…

It’s the end of the world as we know it. Or is it? Mayans say it is. Maybe. was last modified: June 26th, 2019 by Brett Ackroyd
Author: Brett Ackroyd (631 posts)

Brett hopes to one day reach the shores of far-flung Tristan da Cunha, the most remote of all the inhabited archipelagos on Earth…as to what he’ll do when he gets there, he hasn’t a clue. Over the last 10 years, London, New York, Cape Town and Pondicherry have all proudly been referred to as home. Now it’s Copenhagen’s turn, where he lends his travel expertise to momondo.com.