Tibes Indi­an Cer­e­mo­ni­al Center

787−840−2255 /787–840-5685  The Indi­an Cer­e­mo­ni­al Cen­ter of Tibes, locat­ed in the city of Ponce was dis­cov­ered in 1975.  The first inhab­i­tants of the area were pre­sum­ably the Igner­is Indi­ans who came from South Amer­i­ca. They must have set­tled here at about the begin­ning of the Chris­t­ian era, near the third cen­tu­ry. Slow­ly, the Tai­no Indi­ans occu­pied and shared the places acquired by the Igner­is. The Tai­nos, at approx­i­mate­ly 800 years before the Dis­cov­ery of Puer­to Rico, had con­struct­ed the “bateyes” or Cer­e­mo­ni­al Parks, that we have today at the Tibes Cer­e­mo­ni­al Park.  Here they used to cel­e­brate their “Arey­tos” or tra­di­tion­al fes­tiv­i­ties, their sports and oth­er impor­tant events. Maybe in the past, they uti­lized the place as a ceme­tery or bur­ial place. There is evi­dence that they con­struct­ed struc­tures (bohi­os) in the Cer­e­mo­ni­al Cen­ter although their liv­ing quar­ters were not built there.  At the Muse­um in the Cer­e­mo­ni­al Park of Tibes, we may see buri­als, charms, idols, ves­sels, pet­ro­glyphs and oth­er arti­facts used by the Tai­no and Igner­is Indi­ans who lived here. The place is a sanc­tu­ary of pre­his­toric trees such as “higuero, hacar, gua­n­a­bana, cora­zon” among oth­ers. There are vari­eties of birds such as “mar­tinete (ham­mer), ruiseñor (nightin­gale), pitirre, mú­caro (owl), zorzal y carpin­tero (wood­peck­er), which exist­ed at the times of our Indi­ans. There is also yuc­ca, tobac­co, corn, “lerenes” and oth­er indige­nous plan­ta­tions in the area.

Bor­dered by the Ri­o Por­tuguez and exca­vat­ed in 1975, this is the old­est ceme­tery in the Antilles. It con­tains some 186 skele­tons, dat­ing from A.D. 300, as well as pre-Tai­no plazas from A.D. 700. The site also includes a re-cre­at­ed Tai­no vil­lage, sev­en rec­tan­gu­lar ball courts, and two dance grounds. The arrange­ment of stone points on the dance grounds, in line with the sol­stices and equinox­es, sug­gests a pre-Columbian Stone­henge. Here you’ll also find a muse­um, an exhi­bi­tion hall that presents a doc­u­men­tary about Tibes, a cafe­te­ria, and a sou­venir shop. Note: This infor­ma­tion was accu­rate when it was pub­lished, but can change with­out notice. Please be sure to con­firm all rates and details direct­ly with the com­pa­nies in ques­tion before plan­ning your trip. The Indi­an Cer­e­mo­ni­al Cen­ter WEB SITE