Santa Rita

Santa Rita in Corozal is a Maya ruin and an archaeological reserve on the outskirts of Corozal Town, Belize. Historical evidence suggests that it was probably the ancient and important Maya city known as Chetumal.

Evidence excavated at Santa Rita exhibits a long history of inhabitance. The discovery of a burial site containing very early pottery has dated the formation of the city between 2000 and 1200 BC. Its importance peaked during the Postclassic era, and continued to be occupied even after the arrived of the Spanish.

Because of its location, the city at Santa Rita once controlled nearby trade routes between the coast and the mouths of two major rivers, the Río Hondo and Río Nuevo. These rivers served as major arteries of trade to centers in the interior such as Lamanai.

After a short decline during the Late Classic period, Santa Rita once again rose to prominence. Following the decline of Classic sites to the north, Chactemal (also known as Chetumal in some sources) became the capital of one of the 19 Mayan states later recorded by the invading Spanish.

The structure in the photos below, appeared as a large mound of dirt, until it was uncovered in 2013 and major excavation work was undertaken.

Santa Rita Corazal Belize

Santa Rita Maya Belize