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The Peten Holidays

The Peten holidays

Lake Peten-Itza, Flores & Tikal National Park

The vast majority of the Peten region is covered in jungle. It is the largest district of Guatemala although it has the smallest number of inhabitants. Flores is located on a small island in Lake Peten-Itza. The colourful houses and restaurants give Flores a Caribbean flavour.

On the eastern side of the lake is El Remate, from where the sunsets are wonderful. Deep in the lowland jungles of the Peten lie the lost worlds of Maya cities and pyramids. The Tikal National Park was formed in 1955. Tikal’s main temples were constructed from AD550 to AD900, standing so tall that they push through the surrounding jungle canopy. From the Lake Peten-Itza area, it is possible to visit Tikal in a day. Tikal not only has spectacular maya ruins but affords an opportunity to see animals and the bird life of the jungle. The forest is brought to life by howler and spider monkeys, toucans, hummingbirds, deer, foxes wild pigs and coatimundi which roam these parts. More elusive are the jaguar, puma and tapir.

Howler Monkey, The Peten

Holidays In The Peten

For those interested in seeing additional sites whilst in the Peten region, we recommend Yaxha and Nakum. On the northern shore of Lake Yaxha is the site of Yaxha, the third-largest known Classic Mayan site in the country. It offers a fascinating visit, quite different from Tikal, with a twin pyramid complex, nine Acropolis and more than 500 structures.

Generally, it is a less visited site than Tikal with the possibility of seeing monkeys and birds during your visit. The site is particularly suitable for an afternoon excursion, when it is possible to climb to the top of one of the temples and see Lake Yaxha, the jungle and a wonderful sunset!

Topoxte is a much smaller site close to the west shore of Lake Yaxha. It was occupied as late as 1450 AD and contains columns and balustraded steps. 

Tikal featured in the 1977 Star Wars movie. Rebel troops made their base at Temple IV at Tikal!
Star Wars

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