A project dedicated to the preservation of subterranean waterways in the Yucatan peninsula says a group of divers successfully connected two underwater caverns in eastern Mexico to reveal what is thought to be the largest underwater cave discovery to-date.
The Gran Acuifero Maya said the discovery will help shed new light on the ancient Maya civilization. The discovery of the 347km (216mi) cave was found after months of exploring the subterranean channels.
Gran Acuifero Archaeologist Guillermo de Anda said the find was amazing and would help to understand the early development of the Maya.
“It allows us to appreciate much more clearly how the rituals, the pilgrimage sites and ultimately the great pre-Hispanic settlements that we know emerged,” he told Reuters.
The Yucatan is home to numerous monumental relics of the Maya, with cities used an extensive network of sinkholes linked to senotes, or subterranean waters, with some holding religious significance to the Maya.