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Guatemala

Guatemala | Flag Guatemala

A country of striking natural beauty and a distinct indigenous culture, Guatemala was once a Spanish colony. After three centuries of colonial rule the country declared its independence in 1821. The latter half of the last century saw a 36-year-long civil war which was ended only in 1996 by a peace agreement. During the turbulent years more than 100,000 people lost their lives and about one million refugees were created. Guatemala's beauty and strength of identity have not been accompanied by cohesion and prosperity.
Travel overview
Lush and mountainous, heavily forested and punctuated with highland lakes, high volcanoes, orchids and exotic wildlife, Guatemala is graced with wonderful scenery, a rich indigenous culture, colonial past and remarkable Mayan sites. The impressive ruins of the ancient city of Tikal, set deep within the jungle of the Maya Biosphere Reserve, are simply majestic. It’s a pleasure amble through the genteel cobbled streets and plazas of colonial Antigua, a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site. The capital city of Guatemala City is a must-see destination. Lake Atitlan, a stunning deep lake ringed by volcanoes and Mayan villages, is an incredible place not to be missed. Other places of interst in Guatemala are El Altiplano highlands region, Semuc Champey Waterfalls, Agua Volcano, Lanchua National Park, Candelaria Caves, Lanchua Lagoon, and Quirigua, a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site.

Capital: Guatemala
Location: Central America, bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between El Salvador and Mexico, and bordering the Gulf of Honduras (Caribbean Sea) between Honduras and Belize
Climate: tropical; hot, humid in lowlands; cooler in highlands
Total Area: 108,890 sq km
Total Population: 12,728,111
Population Growth Rate: 2.152% (
Sex Ratio: 0.974 male(s)/female
Literacy: 69.1%
Ethnic Groups: Mestizo, European, K'iche, Kaqchikel, Mam, Q'eqchi, Mayan,
Irrigated land: 1,300 sq km
Languages: Spanish, Quiche, Kekchi, Cakchiquel, Mam, Xinca and Garifuna
Time Zone: UTC-6
Currency: quetzal (GTQ), US dollar (USD), others allowed
Neighbouring countries: Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico
Type of govt.: constitutional democratic republic
Head of Govt.: President Oscar Jose Rafael Berger Perdomo
Major Political Parties: Authentic Integral Development or DIA, Center of Social Action or CASA, Democracy Front or FRENTE, Democratic Union or UD, Encounter for Guatemala or EG, Grand National Alliance or GANA, Guatemalan Christian Democracy or DCG, Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity or URNG, Guatemalan Republican Front or FRG, National Advancement Party or PAN, National Unity for Hope or UNE, National Well-Being or BIEN, New Nation Alliance or ANN, Patriot Party or PP, Progressive Libertarian Party or PLP, Reform Movement or MR, Unionista Party or PU, Unity of National Change or UCN, Social Democratic Party of Guatemala or PSG,
Participation in International Organizations: FAO, G-24, G-77, BCIE, CACM, IADB, IAEA, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IFRCS, IHO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ILO, IMF, IMO, ITSO, ITU, MIGA, MINUSTAH, MONUC, NAM, ITUC, LAES, LAIA, OAS, ONUB, RG, UN, UNCTAD, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCL, Union Latina, UNMEE, UNMIS, WCO, WFTU, WTO, WHO, WIPO, WMO,
Major Agricultural Products: sugarcane, coffee, beans, corn, bananas, cardamom, cattle, chickens, sheep, pigs
Industry & Transport: sugar, textiles and clothing, furniture, chemicals, petroleum, metals, rubber, tourism
Airports: 450
Railways: 886 km
Roadways: 14,095 km
Waterways: 990 km
Major Trade Partners: US, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, China, South Korea, Panama
Exports: $3.71 billion
Imports: $9.911 billion

 



 


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