An enchanted destination full of history, culture, and the undiscovered depths of the rainforest, Guatemala is yet a relatively untapped tourist wonderland full of opportunity. Cities set against a backdrop of natural beauty and filled with colonial charms, Mayan ruins shrouded in mystery, and some of the best ecotourism attractions in the world lead thousands of visitors every year to Guatemala’s doorstep, knocking on the door of adventure.
The country invites you to explore Tikal, one of the most notable Mayan ruins in the world surrounded by howler monkeys and macaws, seeming to be a scene out of an Indiana Jones movie. The cultural memories of the Mayan civilization did not end with their departure, however, and you can explore modern interpretations of Maya culture at museums like Museo Ixchel, devoted to the moon goddess of fertility and the feminine spirit. Small villages like those in the Ixil region remember their Mayan heritage and live according to traditional Mayan practices. You can visit sites like these and much more on a trip to Guatemala, a place unlike any other.
From the grace and elegance of Antigua, the country’s former capital, to the foliage covered canyons of Rio Dulce, Guatemala has the diversity needed for an exciting trip. The ecotourism campaign of Guatemala leads you to turquoise lagoons, volcanoes, and lush tropical canopies filled with bird song. A visit to Lago de Atitlan is recommended for any Central American trip, described by famed author Aldous Huxley as the “most beautiful lake in the world.”The intensely scenic placid lake exists calmly, surrounded by three peaked volcanoes within the barrel of a crater. Although the volcanoes around the lake are not currently active, Guatemala’s Volcan de Pacaya is a continuously volatile act of God that seeps, spews, and shoots forth postcard perfect lava flows, bringing in tourists and locals to wonder at the sight. For eco-tours that are less volatile, the Semuc Champey pool is the perfect place for swimming as the waters are crystal clear, embanked by limestone rock formations and an iconic natural limestone bridge, making it one of the loveliest spots in the country.
The country also prides itself on the industry, offering tours of their prosperous coffee plantations during which you can learn about the coffee making process and sample some of their best brews. Parque Central Quetzaltenango is another exciting yet stunning cultural center and the perfect destination to people watch, gaining an interesting view of the Guatemalan citizens of the large city. Nearby is also a natural hot spring where you can enjoy a little relaxation excursion before heading back to Quetzaltenango for a night on the town.
Guatemala is sure to excite with its intense concentration of cultural and social attractions within the cities to the natural, preserved, and undisturbed landscapes of the seas, pools, caves, mountains, volcanoes, and beyond. There is always the mystery hidden behind the unknown that drives travelers onward and Guatemala is the quintessentially mysterious destination full of Mayan history, abandoned cities inhabited only by monkeys and jaguars deep within the rainforest, and small towns accessible only by the water, clinging to their unique traditions. Explore, become an adventurer, and discover what makes Guatemala one of the most beautiful destinations in a stunning world of travel.