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and within this area, structures are generally situated equidistantly and are integrated with the terrace system.
The town grew into one of the largest ancient Maya cities, covering some 177 km² with an estimated population of over 100,000 The Caracol was officially founded in AD 331 (8..4) by Te’ K’ab Chaak.
Excavations were undertaken in the Culebras and Palmitas residential groups on either side of the Pajaro-Romonal Causeway to determine whether differential composition of residential complexes existed in close proximity to the center.
The causeway running from the center to the Ceiba Terminus was extended and mapped all the way to La Rejolla, a site which exhibited monuments with the Caracol emblem glyph.
It rests on the Vaca Plateau at an elevation of 500 meters above sea-level, in the foothills of the Maya Mountains.
Local tour guides say that the nickname "Caracol" originates from the large population of snails present on the site.
Arlen and Diane Chase of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), United States.
Its ancient name has been reconstructed from the Emblem Glyph popular among its early rulers - Ux Witz Ajaw, or “Three Hills Lord”.
The full name of Caracol would be "Three-Hills Water," read Oxwitza', Uxwitza’ or, Hispanicised, "Oxhuitza".
Belize government declares the Caracol area a national park. Jaime Awe and the Belize Tourism Development Project (TDP) began “tourist-proofing” Caracol’s buildings Excavations focused on Structures A13, B28, and F4, as well as the plaza in front of Structure B33.
Northeast sector investigated to determine settlement density and dating; mapping and reconnaissance indicate no settlement drop-off for 6 km, and the radius of the site determined to be 10 km from the Cahal Pichik, Ceiba, Retiro, and Hatzcap Ceel Causeways and Termini Excavations focused on structures within the southwest walled area, and one residential group immediately south of the area. A new Stela was found in front of Structure B28; a stucco text was recovered in association with Structure B19.
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Excavated structures include A31, the Northwest Acropolis (Structures A61-A69), and the Gateway residential group (Structures B139-143).