Visit Guatemala: Tikal [Part Nine]

On our last day in Guatemala we decided to wake up at 2:30 to watch sunrise from the tallest temple at Tikal. We took a private taxi to the entrance of the park and then met with a local guide who led us by flashlight through the pitch black rainforest.

We climbed to the top of the temple and sat in silence withe about 30 other tourists who had also made the trek. We waited together for dawn. Our spectacular sunrise was stunted by cloud cover but even though we didn’t get the most perfect pictures, the whole thing was still incredible.

Once the sun was up we had a few hours to kill before the rest of the Gate 1 group arrived at Tikal by bus, and Dad and I had walked around almost the entire national park by the time they made it through the gates.

It was fortunate we did most of our exploring by mid morning because around noon, the sun was extremely hot and I was dripping sweat. All I wanted was to find some shade and chug my water.

While we were exploring, we found a young Howler monkey suspended directly above the footpath in a low branch. While we were watching him, another tour group came up behind us and the local guide started hooting at the monkey in an attempt to agitate him. It worked, and the monkey started howling back! It was really neat to actually see the monkey up close as it was howling because we’d heard them in the distance throughout the whole trip.

We ate lunch as a group at the restaurant inside the park grounds and then headed to the tiny Flores airport where we said goodbye to Tony and boarded a tiny plane back to Guatemala City before our morning flight home to USA.

And just like that, the trip was over.


Compulsive snacker. Bleeding heart. Unhealthy obsession with Tom Hanks and cats. Florida State and Syracuse University alum.

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