Marco Gonzalez Archaeological Reserve. Marco Gonzalez is located at the southern tip of Ambergris Caye, about 5 miles south of San Pedro. It was first recorded in 1984 and excavated between 1984 and 1994. However, the site had already been extensively looted before its excavation.
Marco Gonzalez was occupied from the late Preclassic Period to around 1500 AD when it was abandoned. Archaeologists believe it was abandoned because the melting of the last Pleistocene glaciers caused a change in ocean currents and a rapid rise in sea levels that together turned the site into an inhospitable low-lying mangrove swamp.
Salt production, fishing and trading were the primary activities at Marco Gonzalez, with salt production the most intense during 800 BC - 500 AD.
49 structures and walls were identified at the site - some around plazas at the northern end, with buildings scattered more randomly throughout the rest of the site.
Marco Gonzalez is difficult to reach and rarely visited. It is named after the guide of the archaeologists who first recorded its existence, Drs. Elizabeth Graham and David Pendergast.