LAS VER­A­PACES NA­TURE PAR­ADISE

Newsweek - - Guatemala -

The re­gion of Las Ver­a­paces con­sists of the two parts: Alta Ver­a­paz and Baja Ver­a­paz. Both dis­tricts are largely cov­ered by lush primeval forests with quite dif­fer­ent ecosys­tems, which are ex­em­plary for dry forests or for the thorny and bushy chap­ar­ral. Cloud and rain­forests can be also found here which pro­vide refuge for an over­whelm­ing va­ri­ety of species, in­clud­ing the Quet­zal and the Guatemalan na­tional flower Monja Blanca, as well as a num­ber of en­dan­gered species. There are more than 800 or­chid species alone in this na­ture par­adise.

The mor­phol­ogy and ge­og­ra­phy of this re­gion make it a dream des­ti­na­tion for ad­ven­tur­ers who want to be im­mersed in the un­touched na­ture. White­wa­ter raft­ing on the rapids of the Ca­habón River, ca­noe­ing trips or ab­seil­ing can be prac­ticed here just as well as un­wind­ing in one of the cas­cades and water­falls. Se­muc Cham­pey is a nat­u­ral lime­stone bridge with a length of more than 300 me­ters, flow­ing through the river Ca­habón, which cir­cu­lates un­der­ground in a cave and washes out the stone. Seven pools with a depth of one to three me­ters have formed in this way in a gorge, in which rocks from the Polochic Val­ley come to rest. Rest in the fresh air is guar­an­teed in this trop­i­cal moun­tain land­scape with its pil­grim paths, the route through the biotope of the Quet­zal and the ex­tra­or­di­nary Lan­quin and Can­de­laria Caves.

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