La Piedra Maria Tecún

"They tell us that this place is sacred and that its energy is the spirit of a young girl who protects, cares for and defends the forest. They call her María Tecún."

Located at 3100m in the heart of the community forest of the 48 Cantones of Totonicapán is La Piedra Maria Tecun, a large rock tower and Mayan sacred site. The rock affords vast views of the region, territorio Kiché and Chichicastenango. At the rock is a alter where los Ajqijab (Mayan spiritual guides) practice fire ceremonies.

Mayan Ceremony at La Piedra Maria Tecún, Totonicapán, Guatemala Photo: Brendan James ©2020
Totonicapán, Guatemala Photo: Brendan James ©2020

The Legend of La Piedra María Tecún

She was named María, a biblical name. So that during the Spanish Conquest friars and the Catholic soldiers would have a fear to destroy her. She protects the villages below, supplying wood and water. Her rocky forests are the headwaters of rios Chixoy and Motagua, Guatemala’s largest, extending nearly 500km to the Pacific coast. For locals, La Piedra María Tecún is a place where thanks are given for food, and corn. The area is a center for Mayan ceremonies to ask for everything related to planting, harvesting and food.

Mountain Biking

La Piedra Maria Tecun is a must see sight for anyone exploring Totonicapán or Quiché by bike. We pass through this Mayan Sacred site on our Chichicastenago day tour and make a stop here on several of our multi-day epics including our 7 Day Guatemalan Highland Tour and Highland Enduro Epic. Although it is not guaranteed you will see a Mayan ceremony the view of the department of Quiché from the rock is well worth it. La piedra Maria Tecún makes great high-altitude introduction to the communal forest of Totonicapán, the largest preserved pine forest in Central America.

Mountain Biking in Totonicapán Guatemala
Photo: Neftali Ajín ©2020

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