Guatemala

Guatemala has the atmospheric volcano-fringed colonial town of Antigua, the mighty Mayan ruins of Tikal, the vast Lake Atitlan up in the mountains, tropical rainforest a-plenty and glittering sandy beaches to enjoy. Welcome to paradise!

Guatemala offers an unspoilt view of Central America. The Mayan communities who live in the highlands still wear traditional weavings and follow arcane religious rituals where idol worship is a main theme. Nature though is the key to this beautiful country and here it is possible to take in volcanic peaks, archaeological sites and traditional Maya fiestas.

Guatemala City has a multitude of sites to visit and one of the best is Parque Central with its floodlit fountain, open air concert area and Sunday market which sells a number of textile products. Near to the park is the cathedral, notable for its blue cupolas and dome and the Museo Nacional de Historia that houses historical documents and objects from the Independence.

Antigua is one of Guatemala’s principal destinations with its colonial architecture, tropical gardens, plazas and cobbled streets. Here you will find the cultural epicentre of Guatemala where the arts flourish and its traditions and folklore are still very much alive.

The still active Pacaya Volcano is a marvellous place to hike and rewards climbers with some spectacular lava flows. Lake Atitlan is a wondrous place to appreciate scenery and admire the deepest lake in Central America or, as Aldous Huxley put it, “the most beautiful lake in the world”. Along the lake it is still possible to see how the Mayas live today and towns such as Chichicastenango play host to weekly markets that cater for both the tourists and the locals.

Tikal National Park offers a multitude of sights including Maya skyscrapers pushing up through the jungle canopy and steep-sided temples that bear the inscriptions of powerful rulers and their noble deeds. This World Heritage site is well worth visiting and is just one of the amazing sites that Guatemala has to offer.

The country lies at the heart of the Mayan culture in Central America with remarkable Mayan sites scattered throughout the land.

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