NIM LI PUNIT MAYAN RUINS
From the City Of Belmopan, take the Hummingbird Highway for 45 miles until you reach the Southern Highway Exit. Turn right onto the Southern Highway and travel an additional 50 miles (about 1 ½ hours) until you reach Indian Creek Village. Exit to the right on the gravel road and continue for about half a mile until you reach the reserve.
Located in the Toledo District of Belize, the name Nim Li Punit is derived from a carving on one of the site’s twenty six stelae, which depicts a figure wearing a large headdress. In the Maya Kekchi language, Nim li Punit means “the big hat.” The monument on which this carving appears is the longest stela in Belize (Stela 14), originally located in an area called Plaza of the Stelae.
These ruins over look the Toledo coastal plain, milpas and rain forest. Having only one main plaza, one pyramid, one ball court and a few moderately sized buildings, Nim Li Punit fall is smaller compared to masterpieces found in other areas. But it has a large number of stelae; twenty-five large, often huge, stone slabs and pillars, eight of them carved, populate this small area. In fact, one of the stela is the tallest carved example in Belize. Due to this curiosity, Nim Li Punit is believed to have served as its dynasty’s worshiping place.
The second largest jade object in all the Maya World is a jade chest pendant discovered at Nim Li Punit in 2015 (the largest the Kinich Ahau sun god was also discovered in Belize). The interpretation on the back so far is this: The jewel was made for the king Janaab’ Ohl K’inich, and the hieroglyphs describe the king’s parentage. “His mother, the text implies, was from Cahal Pech while the king’s father may have come from somewhere in Guatemala.