Latin America Travel & Tour Information
Guatemala Travel Information
"Here it is, then, the begining of man´s creation and the search for the elements that were to form his flesh. And the Creators, named Tepeu and Gucumatz said: "Dawn has come and so has the time to complete the work and give life to those who must support and feed us, the intelligent sons, the civilized vassals; let man and humanity appear on the surface of the Earth". And so they did". This is an excerpt about the creation of men from the Popol Vuh, the Quiches sacred book, an aboriginal culture that inhabited the lands of today Guatemala.
Balam-Quitzé, Balam-Acab, Mahucutah and Iqui-Balam were the first four mortals to be created after several failures. They were made out of maize because the white and yellow cobs were their main source of nourishment, but the region chosen by the gods was also abundant in fruits and honey. Guatemala was very rich in all sorts of foods and in the unique culture of Mayan civilazation, which branched out into 22 ethnic groups such as the Quiches. Nowadays, it is not possible to mention this destination without refering to its glorious past as one of its chief attractions and still indelible from its present existence.
Did you know, for instance, that Spanish is the official language in this country, but 23 other languages are spoken as well, largely of Mayan origin? Every way you look at it, the territory named by the indigenous people as 'Quauhtlemallan' (a place full of trees) proudly shows its origins, which are clearly visible in the names of other cities and towns: the capital Guatemala, Chichicastenango, Tikal, Petén, Quetzaltenango, Mazatenango, Cobán and Zacapa.
Archeological sites spread all over the country. The amazing city of Tikal is the most outstanding among the existing 25. It is regarded as the greatest legacy of Maya splendor. The Mirador, place that holds the world´s largest pyramid, Takalik Abaj, San Bartolo and Yaxhá constitue other interesting sites.
Guatemala is essencially mountainous and that will provide excellent opportunities for exciting excursiones such as climbing volcanos (about 30), some of them still active like the Pacaya.
Rivers, beautiful lakes, religious tourism, crafts, gastronomy, sports, fishing and riding are just a fraction of the list of activities to do in this thrilling Central American country.