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In the country of volcanoes, Mayans and colourful Indian markets.

date of entry 24/02/1999
mileage 246,583

capital Guatemala City

area 109.021 km²

population 12.728.111

GDP 46,897 Bill. US-Dollar

official language Spanish

In the south, this Central American country borders on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. Therefore, here too traces of the Maya are found in many places. But it is not only the past that is bright here: the people of Guatemala love colourful materials.
  • For safety reasons, Otto always parked where he could be seen. If this was not possible, one of the couple stayed with the car.
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  • Welcome to Guatemala. Christine and Gunther Holtorf crossed the border with Otto from El Salvador in 1999.
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  • A spectacular view of a mountain lake, and a volcano in the background.
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  • Washing machines then were a luxury. This woman was washing her clothes in water that did not exactly inspire confidence.
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  • Indian women sold clothes and headgear in the market in Chichicastenango.
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  • Subdued colours were "out". Customers liked things colourful.
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  • A view of the colourful market activity, where fruit and vegetables were on offer alongside clothing.
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  • Many visitors made the journey to and from the market by public bus.
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  • Church splendour. Even though the plaster on the outer gate was already crumbling, the view of the portal gave an indication of the importance of the church in this country.
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  • Otto parked by the arch of a gate in Antigua Guatemala, the country’s former capital.
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  • Christine Holtorf can be seen in the foreground on the right. She was standing on the steps of a Mayan pyramid in Tical.
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  • A view of the best-preserved Mayan pyramid at the site.
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  • The steps on the structures were high and extremely narrow. The climb up was arduous, and on the way down Christine Holtorf suddenly had great problems with the height. And so, she completed the descent on the seat of her trousers.
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  • Video: Guatemala – dreamlike mountain lakes and mystical Mayan temples