Located in Central America, Guatemala is a mountainous country, except for the south coast and the northern lowlands. The average temperature on the coast is 77 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit (25-30 degrees Celsius) while on the mountains, it s around 59 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius). The rainy seasons are from May to October, while the dry seasons are from November to April.
The main language is Spanish but there are some indigenous Amerindian languages still floating around amongst the natives. The most popular cities include Guatemala City (the capital, obviously), Antigua, Flores, and Tikal. These cities are all filled with lots of activities and must-see destinations.
The ancient Mayans (remember them from your days in history class?) created some of their most impressive cities in Tikal. Located in the northern region, this archaeological site is the best preserved Mayan ruin to date and is a historical landmark.
For all you brainy tourists, the Ixchel Museum of Mayan Costumes is one of the largest museums in Guatemala, containing clothing, paintings, and pottery created by the Mayans centuries ago.
For risk takers, Guatemala has provided you with the Pacaya volcano. An 8,371 foot (2,551 meter) volcano found near Lake Atitlan, it is the most climbed volcano in the country. Tour guides are provided for first timers, but the option to climb it at your own risk is always available (or get the tour guide!).
After a difficult hike, some down time by the Monterrico beach is desirable. The perfect destination for watching the sunset and containing black sand, this beach is like no other in Central America. Nature lovers will be pleased with the Tikal National Park, which is the most famous cultural and natural preserve in Guatemala. Discovered by a gum collector (cool job) in the 1800s, it is full of diverse plants and is a World Heritage Site.
Considered the most beautiful view in Guatemala by the natives (and you know Guatemalans don t lie!), Lake Atitlan was formed by a volcano. Surrounded by Mayan villages and three towering volcanoes, this lake is the deepest in Central America.
Most importantly, when it comes to shopping, the Chichicastenango market is where vendors from different countries come to sell their impeccable hand-made goods. Accessible from Guatemala City, Antigua, and Quetzaltenango, the market is full of culture, traditional food, textiles from around the world, and historical treasures. Hungry after all that vacationing? The base of all Guatemalan meals is corn, beans, rice, cheese, and tortillas. Fresh fruit from the rain forests is also very popular, being used to make fruit shakes and (wait for it) tropical, alcoholic beverages that the country is famous for.