Welcome to your Guatemalan Experience
How so much cultural and geographic diversity can fit into one small country boggles the mind, and yet Guatemala does it seamlessly. It’s home to everything from ancient Maya temples and Spanish colonial cities to cloud-shrouded highland villages and vibrant Caribbean towns. There are spewing volcanoes, lazy rivers, remote cloud forests, and vast swaths of untamed jungle. But what truly make this country unique are its indigenous peoples—21 Maya groups and the Garífuna people—whose distinctive cultures, languages, and centuries-old traditions continue to thrive today
There are spewing volcanoes, lazy rivers, remote cloud forests, and vast swaths of untamed jungle. 21 Maya groups and the Garífuna people—whose distinctive cultures, languages, and centuries-old traditions continue to thrive today
Guatemala is bordered by Mexico, Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador. It has a small snippet of Caribbean coastline—for the best experience, see it through the lens of Livingston, Guatemala’s laidback Garífuna fishing town—and a flat, 250-kilometer-long (155 mile) Pacific stretch that’s notable for its mostly undeveloped, black-sand beaches, enormous sugarcane plantations, and proximity to fantastic deep sea fishing; sea turtles nest in this area, as well.
What makes Guatemala so special?
- Antigua’s history, romantic Spanish-colonial charm, and international and local cuisine
- Extraordinary Mayan archaeological sites like world-famous Tikal or the more secluded sites of Yaxhá, Aguateca, and El Mirador
- Strongest indigenous culture (Maya and Garifuna) in the Americas with 23 different languages.
- Exceptional traditional crafts and textiles
- Thirty-three volcanoes, three highly active
- Natural diversity: lakes, rivers, beaches, mountains, deserts, rainforests, cloud forests
- More than 720 recorded bird species, plus marine and wildlife
- Luxury and unique accommodations, including private villas, upscale resorts, boutique hotels in restored colonial era ruins, jungle eco-lodges, and lakeside cabins
Will you enjoy Guatemala? Guatemala is for you if you enjoy…
- THE MAYA WORLD: Archaeological sites of the ancient Maya
- INDIGENOUS CULTURES: Living Maya and Garifuna culture, traditions, dress, markets, artisan crafts
- WILDLIFE: Amazing animals, birds, reptiles, and insects
- ECO-ADVENTURE: Nature reserves, jungles, mountains, beaches, rivers, lakes, oceans
- ADVENTURE SPORTS: Biking, hiking, kayaking, rafting, jungle trekking, caving, horseback riding, deep sea fishing
- SPECIALIST TRAVEL: Mayan textiles, deep sea fishing, bird watching, Spanish language, shamanism/spiritualism, yoga