The "Lost City of the Manteños", known as Agua Blanca, is located in southern Manabi province of Ecuador 8km from the Pacific Ocean, nestled in a river valley. Agua Blanca was a large city (likely the regional capital) that flourished between 2000 and 500 years ago and was founded by the Manteño people.
The Manteño Period lasted from ca.1500 years ago to ca. 500 years ago but other sites in the area date to thousands of years earlier.
We expect excavations to reveal evidence of even earlier occupations.
This ancient city covers more than 4 sq. km, with the most prominent features being house platforms – more than 600 flat artificial spaces where houses and communal structures were constructed on the valley slopes on terraces created by the original inhabitants.
The stone walls of these structures are still visible on the surface and some of them represent structures that are more than 50m in length and 12m wide.
Archaeologists have also discovered ancient copper foundries, ceremonial structures, pyramidal mounds, astronomical & solar alignments, and several other types of features that we just haven’t figured out yet.
We are excavating at two locations: one is a medium-sized Manteño house and the second is a complex of smaller Manteño houses in a more remote/exotic location. Incredibly, we are finding thousands of artifacts every month. We have already found artifacts never before documented.
Agua Blanca is found within the Machalilla National Park in a dry coastal forest. It is remote, exotic and unique. Surrounded by the coastal mountain range and minutes from the finest sand beaches, you will be amazed at the natural beauty, the peaceful surroundings and the phenomenal history you will uncover with your own hands.
The archaeological work, in which you will be an integral part, is a multi-year scientific program with specific research goals and directives. Learn more about it here.