Explore the Tibes Indian Museum and Archeological Site
The Tibes Indian Ceremonial Center, or the Centro Ceremonial Inígena de Tibes, can be found 3.2 km from Ponce, Puerto Rico bordered by Río Portuguéz. If you are interested in learning about the tribal history of the native people that occupied the area hundreds of years ago then you will really enjoy the Ceremonial Center, which contains part of a 1,500-year-old re-created Taíno village.
A small museum on the site of the center holds many Indian artifacts, such as charms, tools and pottery, that have been collected from the archeological site. There are also a number of native artworks on display. The museum also provides information via a documentary about the native tribal people and how they lived at the time. You will also discover details regarding their way of life and the customs that they practiced.
Interestingly, the Tibes Indian Ceremonial Center is the site of the oldest cemetery to ever be discovered in the Antilles. Over 186 individual skeletons dating back to 300 A.D. were uncovered at this burial site. It was just by chance that the cemetery was discovered in 1975 when a tropical storm uncovered bits of pottery and later the intact remains of the village. Since this exciting discovery was first made, over five acres of land has been examined with many objects from both the Taínos and Igneris Indians having been collected. Excavations also uncovered two ceremonial plazas and many rectangular ball courts. These have provided much information about these tribes which existed in the area around 700 A.D.
Visitors to the center can view huts and fields for sport and dance as these are all part of the Taíno village. On the dance fields there are stones that have been placed in similar position to that of the pre-Columbian Stonehenge. These stones have been placed in specific positions that are in line with the solstices and equinoxes, as observing these were a part of the tribe’s customs.
The Tibes Indian Ceremonial Center opens Tuesday to Sunday from 09:00 to 16:00 everyday. You will also find a small souvenir shop and a tuck shop to provide you with a few snacks.
Last updated: December 13, 2018