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capital and largest city of the Republic of Guatemala
Municipality of Sololá Department, Guatemala
The beach closest to Guatemala City and Antigua, volcanic sand.
capital of Quetzaltenango Department, Guatemala
Semuc Champey is a set of crystalline pools over the Río Cahabón in Alta Verapaz, Guatemala. It consists of a natural 300 m limestone bridge, under which passes the Cahabón River. Atop the bridge is a series of stepped, turquoise pools, a popular swimming attraction. Semuc is part of the backpacker trail in Guatemala.
human settlement in Honduras
From docks on the Rio Grijalva (the only major river within Mexico) near Tuxtla Gutiérrez in Chiapas state, tour launches take you into this steep-walled National Park. You'll likely see vast flocks of flamingos, pelicans, and other waterfowl, as well as crocodiles.
Erected in 1767 by friars from the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy, or Mercedarians, La Merced was one of the few buildings in Antigua to withstand the Santa Marta earthquake that struck seven years later. This was due to the ingenuity of architect Juan de Dios Estrada, who designed the building with his memories and observations of the tremor of 1751 fresh in his mind: the building's modest height, bottom-heavy orientation, wide arches, and robust columns were intended to withstand earthquakes. La Merced was abandoned in 1829 when President Francisco Morazán expelled all clergy from what was then called the Federal Republic of Central America; the church wasn't reopened until 1853, by which time the attached monastery had fallen victim to looters who plundered its building materials for use elsewhere. Today, visitors can take in a distinctive yellow facade that has been called the most beautiful example of Spanish Baroque architecture in Antigua, pay the admission fee for the ruins of the monastery whose courtyard boasts what is reputed to be the largest fountain in Central America (the Mercedarian monks once raised fish in it), or — if you happen to be in town during semana santa (Holy Week, the week before Easter) — check out the processions that wind through the streets of old Antigua on Palm Sunday and Good Friday, beginning and ending at the church.
bridge in Guatemala
Municipality of Sacatepequez Department, Guatemala
Beautiful lake region in the mountains surrounded by many picturesque villages and volcanoes, which is becoming more and more touristic
The Central Highlands is the region around Guatemala City, stretching northwards to the Northern Lowlands in Guatemala.
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