A journey within the country of eternal spring in the centre of the Maya culture is a journey to a country full of contrasts and traditions. Guatemala is the third-largest and with 15 million inhabitants the most populated country in Central America. More or less 70 % of inhabitants in Guatemala live under precarious circumstances, caused by poverty and years of war. But until today the Mayas are an important part of the population. Many aspects of their culture are vivid. At a rough estimate 40 % of the population have Maya origins. The incredible variety of traditional clothing can be discovered in the daily life.
With the Guatemalans, that are also called Chapín, the traveller encounters a variety of landscapes and places. The colonial city Antigua expresses its charm with beautiful buildings. You can enjoy the nature at Lake Atitlán. Boats drive from little village to other at the shore and volcanoes frame the lake in a magnificent way – a great place for hiking. To get to know the culture and traditions of the indigenous population, visit the Maya ruins Tikal in the north of Guatemala. In the national park Semuc Champey you feel really “into the wild”. The miracle of nature fascinates with natural, turquoise pools. Like a different country appears the Caribbean coast with its city Livingston. African originated people, Creole culture and incredible beaches are worth a visit.
Spanish is the official language in every Central American country and is spoken by the majority of European originate Mestizos and most of the Indígenas as second language.
Especially in the mountains of Guatemala where the the indigenous population lives that speaks Maya-language with all its various dialects. At the Caribbean coast Creole is also very common.
In the highlands it is most of the time quite cold, especially from November to February, which are the coldest months. But in the lowlands it is warm all over the year. At the coast you will never freeze, however it is fairly hot over there no matter if you are at the Pacific or Caribbean Ocean. Take water improved clothes with you, if you travel Guatemala.
Like in most of Central American countries the Guatemalans eat a lot of rice and beans. Moreover, Tortillas, Pepían, hot spicy sauce, and Tamales (made out of corn and meat) are very popular.