This month our Virtual Paint Out Group traveled to Guatemala, another interesting country to tour. I enjoy reading about each destination's geography and demographics. Information courtesy of Wikipedia and other sites.
Guatemala, located on Mexico's southern border, covers 42,042 sq mi (a bit smaller than Tenn.) and is home to about 15½ million people, making it the most populous region in Central America.
An interesting country with a few large cities, small remote villages and miles of uninhabited land. The scenic countryside is a combination of dense forests, stunning mountains, dry plains and perilous rain-forests. There are 33 volcanoes, some active. Ancient Mayan sites are scattered throughout. The earliest evidence of human inhabitants date back to 18,000 BC.
The tropical climate is rainy, hot and humid in the lowlands, but higher elevations are cool and dry. Some of the highest peaks may even receive a dusting of snow.
The major exports are livestock, fruits and vegetables, sugarcane, coffee, cardamom and precious metal ores. It is the largest producer of Jade in the world. Chocolate originated here with the early Mayan culture.
Guatemala is a poor country with a less than 70% literacy rate and the highest number of gang members in Central America. Its numerous criminal organizations are among the most sophisticated and dangerous in the region. An average of 101 murders per week was reported in 2016, making the country's violent crime rate one of the highest in Central America.
|Guatemala High Country, 8x10, oil|
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