The birthplace of Mayan civilisation, Guatemala today is a mixture of traditional culture and modern lifestyle. Mayan ruins continue to be discovered deep in the jungle and you can still walk and climb many of them. There are beautiful colonial cities, colourful markets, stunning lakes and smouldering volcanoes. Guatemala is a fabulous destination for an active and cultured holiday. Highlights include:
- El Peten, an area of jungle concealing many ancient ruins including the lost city of Tikal. At Yaxha, discovered only a few years ago, you can still see archaeologists at work.
- Lake Atitlan, overlooked by three volcanoes where you can see Mayan culture and dress. You can also visit some of the women-run weaving co-ops preserving weaving traditions and selling gorgeous artisanal textiles.
- The UNESCO world heritage site of Antigua surrounded by smouldering volcanoes. Active travellers can climb sections or, time permitting, the whole of some of the volcanoes.
- The colourful market of Chichicastenango full of woven textiles, ceramics and masks.
- Fabulous birdlife, including the elusive quetzal, the national bird of Guatemala in the area surrounding Coban.
Walking in Guatemala is all about the volcanoes. Treks of varying lengths, from half day loops to multi day treks are available to the top of many of the volcanoes surrounding Antigua and Lake Atitlan. The views from the top are spectacular. Of neighbouring smouldering volcanoes or Lake Atitlan itself. Whilst some of them can be done in a day the views from the summit are spectacular at sunset and sunrise and camping on the volcano is an experience in itself.
Highlights of Guatemala
from £2779 per person
Classic Guatemala and Belize
from £3800 per person
Mexico and Guatemala higlights
from £1300 per person (excl flights)
British citizens don’t need a visa for entry to Guatemala for up to 90 days but always check entry requirements with the Foreign Office here.