It’s a dream come true for archaeologists everywhere – a cave bursting with artefacts was found under the ancient Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza.

Balamku is the name of the group of caves where more than 150 ancient relics were found, that have been in hiding for over 1000 years. The objects include bowls, plates and incense burners, and they are considered a goldmine for scientists wanting to uncover more about the beliefs and origins of the Mayans who hailed from Chichen Itza.

The discovery was announced this week by the National Institute of Anthropology and History in Mexico who called it one of the most important findings of this ancient Mayan city.

Guillermo de Anda, a lead INAH explorer, had to pull himself through narrow tunnels before he came across any of the ancient relics. The team of explorers was initially searching for a sacred well.

Archaeologist Pedro Francisco Sanchez Nava discussed how difficult it was to access the cave, adding to the merit of this find.

While the relics themselves have remained untouched for the past 1000 years, there has been one pair of eyes that have seen them during this time. In 1966, archaeologist Victor Segovia Pinto explored the caves after farmers came across it. However, he decided against excavating it for unknown reasons and requested that the farmers reseal it.

De Anda says that this discovery will help rewrite the story of Chichen Itza. Because they are in an incredible state of preservation, they will prove invaluable in the search for the founders of the site, which could hold more secrets than we realize about this ancient civilization.