The Mayan civilization was built around agriculture - a major challenge in a tropical climate. To help, they developed a sophisticated system to accurately track the seasons.
In the tropical forests of Mexico and Guatemala stand the sacred sites of the ancient Mayan civilization. Recent scientific discoveries suggest that these monumental temples and pyramids were built to align with not only the heavens, but an equally mysterious supernatural underworld. Travel to the great cities of Palenque, Tikal, and Chichen Itza, where groundbreaking research may locate the most sacred Mayan site of all: the mystical center of the world, which links the underworld, the earth, and the heavens.
Now, you can watch Smithsonian Channel's incredible documentaries and shows anytime you want by purchasing from any of these distributors:
Access even more free Smithsonian Channel full episodes and documentaries online through participating TV providers.
Find out if your television provider carries Smithsonian Channel.
Don't panic! It's simple to upgrade to the latest version of one of these browsers:
Don't panic! To get the best possible experience on smithsonianchannel.com we recommend you upgrade your operating system.
For the best possible site experience, please use Chrome for Android.
Add username "SmithsonianChan" on Snapchat for fun and fascinating facts. We'll be sharing spontaneous photos and videos as inspiration strikes.