Guatemala has more than 3,500 archaeological sites, about 2,400 are now officially registered. Evidence of the ancient Olmec Civilization, for example, which flourished on Guatemala's pacific coast, can be seen at La Democracia and Takalik Abaj.
Post-Classic sites in Guatemala include the lovely ruin of Topoxté, found on an island in Lake Yaxhá, as well as highlands cities, such as Gumarcaaj, that were destroyed in the XVI century by the Spaniards. Visitors to Guatemala's Maya World have a chance to explore many acclaimed archaeological sites, some of which lie within the 3.9 million acres of protected forests and wetlands that form the Maya Biosphere. Here you will see a great variety of animals, such as monkeys, jaguars, and bats, prominent figures in Maya art and mythology.