Southeast of the capital, bustling ESCUINTLA ranks as Guatemala’s third largest city with a population of around 130,000. Despite its size there’s nothing to see here, but you do get a good sense of life on the coast – its heat, pace and energy, as well as the frenetic industrial and agricultural commerce that drives it. The city dominates this stretch of Pacific coast, along with Puerto San José, formerly its most important port – though neither place is at all attractive. In the city centre, below the plaza a huge, chaotic market sprawls across several blocks, spilling out into 4 Avenida, the main commercial thoroughfare.

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Guatemala features

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Guatemala City: 7 reasons to stay a while

Guatemala City: 7 reasons to stay a while

Most visitors race through Guatemala City, keen to get to Antigua’s colourful colonial streets, visit the country’s Mayan sites or explore its spectacular v…

12 Jul 2017 • Freya Godfrey insert_drive_file Article
Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

1. Thailand There’s a reason why Thailand remains so popular with backpackers – it’s got idyllic islands, a rich culture, beach-huts aplenty, tantalising…

21 Aug 2015 • Emma Gibbs camera_alt Gallery
In pictures: traditional dress around the world

In pictures: traditional dress around the world

The Sari, India Ostensibly the simplest item of clothing possible – a single length of fabric, up to nine metres long – the sari is also one of the worl…

02 Feb 2015 • Alice Park camera_alt Gallery
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