Guatemala Facts

Guatemala Facts
The country of Guatemala is officially called the Republic of Guatemala. Guatemala is located in Central America and covers an area of 42,043 square miles. Guatemala is bordered by Mexico, Belize, the Caribbean, the Honduras, El Salvador and the Pacific Ocean. Prior to the arrival of Spanish explorers in the 1500s, the region had been inhabited by the Mayan civilization. It wasn't until the early 1800s that Guatemala finally regained its independence from the Spanish Empire. Political and military conflicts ensued until 1996 when the Guatemalan Civil War that had begun in the 1960s, finally ended.
Interesting Guatemala Facts:
The name 'Guatemala' originates from a word meaning 'place of many trees'.
Guatemala's motto is the 'Country of Eternal Spring'.
The main language spoken in Guatemala today is Spanish. There are 21 other Mayan dialects spoken in Guatemala.
Evidence of human life in the Guatemalan region dates back to 12,000 BC.
The capital of Guatemala is Guatemala City.
The population of Guatemala today is more than 14 million people. Guatemala is the second-most populated country in both South and Central America.
The Guatemalan currency is the Quetzal, and the U.S. dollar is also used.
Approximately half of the Guatemalans living today are descendants of the ancient Mayans.
The other half of Guatemalans are called Ladinos, who are of Spanish-Mayan ancestry.
During the Guatemalan Civil War approximately 200,000 people died and half a million were displaced from their homes.
In Tikal, Guatemala there are approximately 3000 Mayan buildings that date between 600 BC and AD 900.
Major industry in Guatemala today includes sugar, textiles, clothing, chemicals and furniture.
Major agriculture in Guatemala today includes sugarcane, coffee, bananas, and corn, as well as livestock including cattle.
Major exports from Guatemala include meat, fruits and vegetables, sugar, coffee and cardamom.
Major imports into Guatemala include fuel, transportation equipment, grain, fertilizer, chemical and mineral products and plastics.
Guatemala's natural resources include petroleum, hydro power, fish, rare woods, and nickel.
The tallest pre-Columbian structure in the Americas is Temple IV in Tikal. It stands at 212 feet.
Guatemala's Independence Day is celebrated on September 15th each year. This day commemorates Guatemala's independence from Spain.
Because of the high rates of organized crime in Guatemala, the country has one of the highest murder rates in the world.
The literacy rate in Guatemala is 71%.
There are approximately 2.3 million internet users in Guatemala.
The highest point in Guatemala is Volcano Tajumulco which stands at 4,211 feet.
The longest river in Guatemala is the Motagua River.
Guatemala has a tropical climate, being hot and humid in the lowlands and cool in the highlands.
Guatemala has a total of 33 volcanoes.
The first chocolate bar was invented by the Mayans in Guatemala.
The mathematical concept of 'zero' was invented by the Mayans.
Guatemala is the birth place of blue denim.
The largest collection of UNESCO World Heritage sites in any country are found in Guatemala.
Belize used to be a part of Guatemala but was given to Britain. Britain had promised some highways in return but they were never built.


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