Guatemala City is a bustling city filled with vibrant colors. The historic architecture gives the city a unique look and ambiance. Within the city is the archaeological site of KaminalJuyu, which is believed to be a buried city. There are quite a number of museums in the city worth a visit. The Aurora Zoo is home to several animals and the JardinesBotanico in the city is the first botanical garden to be established in Central America.
Antigua is another beautiful city and is the Spanish colonial capital of Central America. The city has numerous historic buildings and has been designated as a World Heritage Site. The center of the city is dominated by a huge park, the Parque Central. There are two main hiking routes close to Antigua; hike up the active Pacaya Volcano, trekking till the crater is not possible as it an active volcano, however, visitors can get near to it and enjoy some amazing views. Another hike is up the Acatenango Volcano, which requires an entire day.
Flores is another beautiful island town which is nice to visit. It is close to the Mayan ruins at Tikal and offers visitors a number of interesting activities to enjoy. Another large Mayan ruins are at El Mirador. The Lake Peten Itza is good to take a swim in; hire a boat and travel across the lake to visit the town of San Jose. Lake Atitlan is a good place to visit especially for diving. There are also a number of activities that visitors can enjoy around Lake Izabal. Inquire about the "family-friendliness" of these places from locals before planning your day there.
Special things to buy in Guatemala include handicrafts, ceramics, jewelry, textiles and leather goods. You can find most of these at the local markets but the best places to buy ceramics are Villa de Chinautla, Rabinal and San Luis Jilotepeque. Coban is a good place to buy silverware. The Central Market in Guatemala City and the Craft Market are good for buying traditional craft items. Guatemala City also has a number of modern shopping centers including Galerias La Pradera, Geminis International Mall and Gran Centro Comercial Los Proceres.
Muslims form a small part of the population of Guatemala. There are few masaajid in the country with the Da'wah Masjid of Guatemala in the outskirts of Guatemala City being the main one. Visitors can find a few Halal restaurants in the country, to locate one, visitors can enquire at the masjid or with locals. Rice and beans with any type of meat is a local favorite. The major cities have a variety of restaurants where visitors can dine. For Halal restaurants in the city, please check our Halal Restaurant listing. If there are no restaurants listed in the city, then please make sure you inquire from the locals or the local Halal certifying body what food you could consume and where you could find Halal food/ restaurants.
The most preferred means of traveling in Guatemala is by bus. The buses in the country are colorfully decorated and are much more affordable than taxis. These buses operate between all major cities and also within the cities. Domestic flights also operate between Guatemala City and Flores.