Guatemala National Archaeology and Etymology Museum | Attraction Guides | History Hit

Guatemala National Archaeology and Etymology Museum

Guatemala City, Guatemala, Guatemala

Sarah Roller

24 Nov 2020
Image Credit: Infrogmation / CC.

About Guatemala National Archaeology and Etymology Museum

The Guatemala National Archaeology and Etymology Museum or “Museo Nacional de Etnología y Arqueología” in Guatemala City is dedicated to exploring the country’s history, particularly that of the Maya civilisation.

History of Guatemala National Archaeology and Etymology Museum

The museum was brought into existence in 1898, following a government decree. It has lived in its current location, which boasts over 3000 metres square of exhibition space, since 1946. The total collection comprises of over 25,000 items.

Guatemala National Archaeology and Etymology Museum today

The museum has an undeniably impressive collection of Maya artefacts and sculptures – it’s a great place to start or finish your trip if you’re planning to go and visit Maya ruins as it displays Pre Classic, Classic and Post Classic Maya societies. It also has an impressive selection of artefacts removed from sites like Tikal and Piedras Negras.

The impressive Maya collection ranges from dioramas of ancient cities to pottery, masks and jewellery – especially in the signature Maya stone of jade – using these artefacts and pieces to chronicle the Maya culture from the Pre-Classic period to the Classic and Post-Classic.

The museum is closed on Mondays and open afternoons only at weekends. There’s relatively sparse signage, even in Spanish, so it’s worth reading up before you come or having a phone handy to do some research on what you’re looking at in order to have a slightly fuller understanding.

Getting to Guatemala National Archaeology and Etymology Museum

The museum is located in the south of Guatemala City, on the corner of Calle 5A and Avenida 7A: the bus stop Parada Transurbano is close by, but otherwise it’s not very public transport / walking friendly. You’ll probably want to hire a taxi from the centre of town. It’s also relatively close to the airport, so if you find yourself with time to kill during a layover this makes an excellent spot.