Welcome to Guatemala
Guatemala is a small country of contrast, variety and tradition, whose magic, color and spirit of adventure are not only seen but also felt deep inside those who visit. This is the land of the Maya people, of noble and warm hearts, and proud of their ancestral heritage. Learning more about its land, Mayan culture and colonial history will amaze you. Come and visit this magical country, the Heart of the Maya World!
A Maya Adventure
The Maya chose the sub-tropical jungles of El Peten to be their homeland. This region, witnessed the civilization's rise and fall in cities such as Mirador, Tikal and Aguateca. Thousands of years later, these cities still protect many of the mysteries of the Maya civilization.
The Living Highlands
After the Maya abandoned the larger cities in El Peten, they migrated south to the more temperate climate of the highlands. These mountains and valleys with their fertile soil and magnificent beauty became their new home. Ethnic groups such as the Cack'chiquel, Quek'chi, Mam and Tzutuil co-exist in this region today. Their traditions, handicrafts and stories are the Maya's legacy to the rest of us...
A Natural Paradise
This area has been known as The Verapaces from the time of the Spanish conquistadors. The region's cloud forests are home to the Quetzal, the country's colorful national bird, whose feathers were sacred and used as ornaments by Maya Royalty and Priests. The Verapaces are "green, green, green..." as described by Miguel Angel Asturias, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature. We are sure you will agree that the wild, unspoiled beauty of its landscape has no rival.
A Different Caribbean
The Izabal territory is home to beautiful LakeIzabal, the famous Rio Dulce and the Caribbean coasts in Guatemala. Pirates and Galleons fought for the supremacy of the Caribbean in this area during colonial times. Today the area is home to countless species of flora and fauna such as the dolphin and manatee, and to the amazing Garifuna people of African descent that came to the region from St. Vincentover 200 years ago.
The Pacific Coast
Over 30 volcanoes in Guatemala contributed to the formation of these majestic black sand beaches located on the Pacific Ocean. The weather is hot and humid, perfect for sunbathing and water sports. This coast has gained worldwide recognition lately for its superb sports fishing and natural attractions such as the Marine turtles that visit every year to lay their eggs.
Guatemala, Modern & Colonial
This country offers the best of both worlds. The quaint old capital Antigua, reflects an era long past, that of the Spanish conquistadors. In stark contrast, the new capital of Guatemala Cityis one of the largest and most advanced metropolitan area in Central America. Both cities have much to offer, from museums, art galleries and shopping centers to nightlife and extreme adventure and sports. Visit La Antigua Guatemala and Guatemala Cityfor a unique experience in the heartland of the Maya.
The Undiscovered Guatemala
This area is better known for its agricultural products than its tourist attractions, which appeals more to those wishing to travel off the beaten track. Some of its attractions are a Paleontology Museum and the Basilica de Esquipulas, best known for its statue of a Black Christ, drawing thousands of faithful believers throughout Latin America. Perhaps you have heard or even tasted the Zacapa Centenario XO rum, the best in the world for 5 years in a row according to the Caribbean Rum Fest (Gold Award Winners 98-02). This is only the beginning. There's so much more!