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Best Things to Do in Puerto Quetzal Cruise Port

Tikal ruins
Tikal ruins; © Ondřej Žváček, Wikimedia Commons
Puerto Quetzal is a very important port along the Pacific Ocean on the Guatemalan coast. The port is a popular dock for cruise ships.

In fact, cruises dock here almost all year round. From the port, there are busses, taxis as well as private carriages that are always willing to take tourists to their destinations.

Tuc-tucs, small golf-cart sized taxis that look somewhat like supercharged tricycles with backseats and windshields, are becoming perhaps the most prevalent mode of local tourist transportation in Guatemala. Normally, fare should not exceed $1.50 per passenger.

After settling in, visitors can then enjoy a wide number of activities.

1. Explore Old Mayan Ruins: Puerto Quetzal is a major gateway city to exploring some of the most fascinating ancient Mayan ruins. The ancient city of Tikal is, for example, quite amazing. Tikal was one of the most important Mayan cities. The ruins still stand today and are among the best-preserved in the world. Here, dozens of tour operators solicit visitors at the ports and ensure that their visit is guided and safe.

2. Bird watching: For those who like this activity, bird watching is another popular pastime in Puerto Quetzal. In particular, be on the lookout for the quetzal, Guatemala's national symbol, and the animal after which the port was named.

3. Deep Sea Fishing: For deep-sea fishing enthusiasts, Iztapa, a few miles east, has attracted world-class fishermen from all over the world. Here, Yellowfin tuna and marlin are caught with surprising regularity. In short, Iztapa is a fishing town and is unpatrolled with fishing adventures.

4. Go to The Beach: The area around Puerto Quetzal definitely has the best beaches in all of Guatemala with the very best only accessible by boat across the Canal de Chiquimulilla.

About three miles west in Balneario Chulamar, there are a number of wonderful beaches as well. Also, three miles to the east is Balneario Likín, a popular Guatemalan resort town. Activities such as surfing, kayaking and snorkelling are widely popular on the Pacific shore of Guatemala.

5. Dining and Nightlife: When night falls, Puerto Quetzal also falls into a wonderful ambience of laidback glamour. There are a number of dining and nightlight establishments specifically for tourists.

There are also several wonderful places in Iztapa including the Sol y Playa Tropical. The hotel restaurant serves up some of the best cuisine in Guatemala. The Brasilia Hotel also has a great nightclub for having some fun after hours.

Guatemala is one of the largest countries in the region. Here, amazing cities such as Puerto Quetzal share in the astonishing wonders that the country has to offer. For those planning a visit, try the activities above for a fun-filled and pleasant time.
Scott S. Bateman is a professional journalist who has traveled widely throughout the Caribbean and the Americas.

 > Category: Attractions   Guatemala   

December 18, 2013
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