UNESCgo: El Salvador – the lone spotlight shines on ‘America’s Pompeii’

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‘America’s Pompeii,’ Joya de Ceren Archaeological Site, is El Salvador’s sole UNESCO World Heritage Site. Six more sites wait on the tentative list.

Yesterday recounted The Rapid Traveler’s madcap half-day through El Salvador, ending in the hospitable hammock of the bus ticket vender.

Joya de Ceren is a half hour drive northwest of San Salvador on the way to the popular, by El Salvador standards, Ruta de las Flores. Bus 108 from Terminal de Occidente stops nearby. As San Salvador lacks must-see sights, those passing through should put Jora de Ceren at the top of their list.

El Salvador Honduras 005

El Salvador Honduras 006

Laguna Caldera’s volcano erupted in 595 AD, burying the village under 6 meters of ash. The people escaped but they left behind their homes, wealth and everyday objects.

The setting is tranquil, certainly no tourist hordes in El Salvador. The museum is modern and well presented, though English is limited. The site, while no Pompeii, is interesting to peer into the frozen homes. And you can proudly claim to have visited all of El Salvador’s UNESCO sites!

El Salvador Honduras 007

El Salvador Honduras 008

El Salvador Honduras 009

Tomorrow, the dash continues into Honduras, where farmers carry cricket bat-size machetes with them every waking moment.

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