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Joya de Cerén Archaeological Site Tours

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Joya de Cerén Archaeological Site
A pre-Columbian Mayan farming village dating back to A.D. 600 and El Salvador’s only UNESCO World Heritage site, the impressive ruins of Joya de Cerén were discovered in 1976 and have since become one of the country’s most visited archaeological sites.

Smothered by ash during an eruption of the Laguna Caldera volcano, the buried village was preserved in near-perfect condition, earning it the nickname of the ‘Pompeii of the Americas’ and offering a unique insight into the life and culture of the region’s ancient Mayan communities. Today, the remains of around 70 structures have been uncovered at the site, 10 of which have been excavated and are open to the public, including storehouses, kitchens, workshops, a worship area and a temezcal (ceremonial bath).

Practical Info

The Joya de Cerén Archaeological Site is located about 3 km north of San Salvador and can be reached by public transport. The site is open every day except Mondays from 9am to 4pm, and adult admission is US$3.
Address: Carretera Panamericana (CA-1), San Salvador, El Salvador
Hours: Open every day except Mondays from 9am to 4pm
Admission: US$3 (adults)
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Full-day Tours

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Combo Tour: Volcanoes, Lake and Mayan sites including Joya de Ceren

Discover the towering volcanoes, gorgeous lakes and ancient Mayan sites of El Salvador during this comprehensive 8-hour trip. During your excursion you’ll explore the country’s numerous volcanoes, including the Izalco, Santa Ana and Cerro Verde Volcanoes. Each of these sky-high peaks harbors a wealth of unique ecosystems and plant life to explore. Then check out beautiful Lake Coatepeque before exploring the Mayan-era ‘Joya de Ceren’ archaeological site and the Pre-Columbian city of San Andrés. This full-day El Salvador adventure covers site entrance fees, a guide, and round-trip hotel transport.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$89.10
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US$9.90 savings
From  
US$89.10
US$99.00
US$9.90 savings
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

El Salvador Mayan Ruins, Private Guided Bilingual Day Tour

Only on a guided tour is it possible to visit El Salvador's four largest archaeological sites in just one day. Along with a guide, head to the Mayan ruins in Tazumal, San Andres, Casa Blanca, and Joya de Ceren—the only UNESCO World Heritage-listed site in El Salvador. This tour includes all transportation, national park fees, and guide service at each site, offering an incredible value.
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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US$55.00
From  
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

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Mayan Tour El Salvador: Joya de Cerén, Tazumal, & Coatepeque Lake

The civilization of Mayas was important for Central America , thats why we have to know its culture, daily life, sacred places, traditions and customs. The Mayan tour in El Salvador is important beacause is the only one place in Central America where you can have the opportunity to see the real life of a normal maya or popular maya. Also, you will take your lunch in an impressive place: Coatepeque lake.We show you the positive side of El Salvador.
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  • 6 to 8 hours
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From  
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  • 6 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Layover Tours

San Salvador Layover Tour | Mayan Route Including Joya de Cerén

Don’t waste time at the airport in between flights – make the most of your layover in San Salvador with this private 4- to 6-hour tour of El Salvador’s Mayan archaeological sites. Follow part of the famous Mayan Route to two equally fascinating sites, Joya de Cerén and San Andrés, and learn how the two settlements were preserved beneath layers of volcanic ash. Discover why UNESCO-listed Joya de Cerén is nicknamed the ‘Pompeii of the Americas’ and use your imagination to bring the pre-Columbian farming village back to life. This tour includes pick-up and drop-off at Monseñor Óscar Arnulfo Romero International Airport in San Salvador.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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From  
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Day Trips

Maya Route Tour | El Salvador Mayan Sites including Joya de Cerén

Relive the glory of the mighty Mayan empire with this half- or full-day tour of the most notable Mayan ruins in El Salvador. Explore the fascinating pre-Columbian villages of San Andrés and UNESCO-listed Joya de Cerén. After a typical Salvadoran lunch (own expense), admire the colonial landmarks of Santa Ana and stand in awe before El Salvador’s largest pyramid at the Tazumal archeological site in Chalchuapa.
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  • 9 hours
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  • 9 hours
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Multi-day Tours

9-Days Highlights of El Salvador

Get a taste of all that El Salvador has to offer, including charming colonial towns, gorgeous beaches and postcard-worthy scenery, on this 9-day, 8-night excursion. Sample the architecture and history of San Salvador before journeying along the idyllic ‘Flowers Route,’ to experience idyllic small town life. You’ll also get to experience El Salvador’s rich Mayan heritage during visits to the UNESCO World Heritage site at Joya de Cerén and visit communities rebounding from the country’s decade-long civil war. Your trip covers a guide, accommodations, all activities and entrance fees, daily breakfast and round-trip hotel transport.
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  • 9 days
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Multi-day Tours

2-Day Tour: Following The Maya Path and Copán Ruins

Experience two of the most spectacular UNESCO World Heritage-listed sites of the Mayan civilization, Copán and Joya de Cerén, during this 2-day, 1-night trip. Explore the ‘Pompeii of the Americas’ at Joya de Cerén, one of the only Mayan villages preserved from ancient times by a volcanic eruption. Then discover the unique stelae (upright stone carvings) and magnificent buildings at Copán, a vast Mayan center with several thousand structures. Your Mayan-themed trip includes a guide, overnight accommodation, entrance fees, snacks and round-trip hotel transport.
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  • 2 days
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  • 2 days

Half-day Tours

San Salvador Combo Tour: City Sightseeing and Joya de Cerén

Maximise your time and minimise your spending, with this great-value combo tour, pairing two of El Salvador’s most popular attractions, plus hotel pick-up. Uncover San Salvador’s colonial history on a 2-hour walking tour, taking in highlights like Masferrer Square, Salvador del Mundo Square, El Rosario Church and the Metropolitan Cathedral. Then, journey to the UNESCO-listed Mayan ruins of Joya de Cerén for a 2-hour guided tour and learn how the fascinating archaeological site earned its nickname as the 'Pompeii of the Americas’.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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From  
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Layover Tours

San Salvador Layover Tour | City Sightseeing & Joya de Cerén

Got time to spare before your onward flight? Maximise your time in San Salvador with a whistle-stop tour of the capital’s highlights and a visit to the UNESCO-listed Mayan site of Joya de Cerén. Choose to explore the sights independently or with a private guide on a 4- to 6-hour tour, taking in landmarks like Salvador del Mundo Square and El Rosario Church, then exploring the fascinating ‘Pompeii of the Americas’. This tour includes pick-up and drop-off at Monseñor Óscar Arnulfo Romero International Airport in San Salvador.
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  • 4 to 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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US$55.00
From  
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  • 4 to 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Day Trips

Day Trip to Santa Ana and Visit to Archaeological Sites

Immerse yourself in Mayan culture with this day trip to three archaeological sites—Joya de Cerén, San Andrés, and Tazumal—in Santa Ana. First, get a peek into the past and learn how the Mayans lived at Joya de Cerén, then head to San Andrés, a residential area of the Mayan rulers and a ceremonial center. Finally, visit Tazumal and explore its complex of pyramids.
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation

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Joya de Ceren and El Boqueron National Park Tour From San Salvador

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  • 4 hours
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Day Trips

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Experience the gorgeous natural scenery of El Cerro Verde National Park and the ancient Mayan village of Joya de Cerén on this 8-hour day trip. Journey to this postcard-worthy national park, nestled among three active volcanoes, for a nature hike and great views of Coatepeque Lake. Before returning to San Salvador, stop by the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Joya de Cerén, a one-time Mayan village preserved by a volcanic eruption. Your trip includes a guide, site entrance fees and round-trip hotel transport.
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  • 8 hours
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3-Day Archeological Tour from San Salvador

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  • 3 days
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Just beyond the borders of San Salvador, the Mayan ruins of Joya de Ceren and Tazumal introduce visitors to El Salvador’s ancient roots. Alongside a guide, discover the UNESCO World Heritage-listed village of Joya de Ceren, and then take in views of Lake Coatepeque from the peak of the Tazumal pyramid. End your tour with a quick visit to downtown Santa Ana, a charming colonial city.
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