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Between San Cristóbal and Palenque, on a paved road running along the Río Jataté and through the Ocosingo Valley, is the ancient Mayan city of Toniná. The name means "house of stone" in Tzeltal, and you'll understand why it's named this once you glimpse this series of temples looming some 20 stories over the valley. Built on a steep hillside, Toniná is even taller than Palenque or Tikal.
Toniná is thought to be the last major Mayan ceremonial center to flourish in this area. It thrived for at least a century after the fall of Palenque and Yaxchilán. There is speculation as to whether it may have actually had a part in their downfall. Excavations indicate that the vanquished rulers of those cities were brought here as prisoners. Wonderfully preserved sculptures, including the Mural de las Cuatro Eras (Mural of the Four Ages) depict bloody executions.
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