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Guatemala is a beautiful country about the size of Ireland found on the southern border of Mexico. On the east it is bordered by Belize, to the south-east it touches both Honduras and El Salvador. The Pacific Ocean is on Guatemala’s western edge. Guatemala is a country noted for its biodiversity, it contains almost every kind of natural environment and habitat. Guatemala has fourteen distinct eco regions and over three hundred mini climates.

Guatemala  is home to the descendants of the Mayas, it had twenty-one indigenous languages plus Garifuna and Xinca, although the official language is Spanish. Fifty per cent of the Guatemalan population is pure blood Indian, the highest percentage in Central America. The rest are mestizo or ladinos. One per cent of Guatemalans can still claim pure European blood. Guatemala t has a small, but vibrant Chinese community and now Koreans are becoming the largest immigrant group.

Guatemala is the richest of the five republics that make up Central America. Not only Guatemala have great diversity of flora and fauna, but also some of the greatest pre-Colombian ruins in the whole of Latin America. The Tikal National Park in Guatemala is a World Heritage Site. Recently it has been discovered that Guatemala is also rich in minerals too.

Guatemala became a democracy in 1996 after the civil war ended. The population of Guatemala is between 14-16 million. The capital is Guatemala City. It can boast two Noble Prize winners and is the home of Marimba music. Its main exports are coffee, bananas and sugar. Its traditional foods are paches and tamales, plus fiambre on All Saints Day. At the moment there seems to a renaissance of art as well in Guatemala.


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