Green Gospel

The tradition of slash-and-burn farming cannot continue text/photos by Thor Janson ( In Mesoamerica the end of the dry season—April and May—finds millions of campesino farmers busy practicing their age-old method of slash-and-burn agriculture. All the refuse on the fields is put to the torch, enriching the soil with mineral ash. This traditional method of farming is sustainable as long […]

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Sacred turtles in Mayan art and iconography

A new FLAAR Report* now lists all of the animals that were sacred or otherwise considered as special by the Classic Maya. There are animals that are related to the sky (constellations, stars, planets), the forests and those that are associated with rivers, lakes, swamps and the oceans. These waters are conflated by the cosmology of the Preclassic and Classic […]

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INVIERNO, winter, is here. It’s the rainy season, and all our senses know it, even though most days still have lots of sunshine in the Guatemalan Highlands around La Antigua Guatemala, and temperatures continue to be mild. Drizzles, showers, deluges, each day’s touch of rain is different, something for all five senses. The colors of our rain shade from light […]

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Bad-Ass Bass Rain from the Sky

Karla S. is among the many anglers who frequent the Panajachel piers for bass. (photo: Brennan Harmuth)

53 years ago, an airplane wrought sudden, significant alterations in Lake Atitlán’s food chain Flying fish inhabit oceans, not lakes. Well, except for one sunny day in 1958. If you were looking at Lake Atitlán then, you would have seen big fish on the fly. They arrived in tubs welded into what was, judging from eyewitness accounts, a Sikorsky seaplane, […]

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Santiaguito consists of four domes (from left to right): El Caliente (erupts 10-20 times daily), La Mitad, El Monje, El Brujo (photo: R.W. Sanderson)

    Volcanic offshoot beckons trekkers to the Highlands A mere infant in geologic time, the Santiaguito lava dome is a steam- spewing, smoke-belching spectacle just outside Quetzaltenango in Guatemala’s Western Highlands. Rising more than 8,000 feet above sea level, Santiaguito (Little St. James) is one of the world’s most active lava-dome com- plexes, consisting of several jagged peaks that […]

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ImaginaMar Continued by Popular Demand


  Sundays, 7, 14, 21 & 28, 11am & 4pm — (Spanish) THEATER FOR KIDS: ImaginaMar, the new musical adventure for the whole family written by John Tartaglia, chronicles the underwater adventures of three fish friends who discover a treasure map. The Spanish version is produced by Fundacion Paiz and presented as part of the XI Festival Internacional de Cultura […]

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In the Land of Green Lightning

Guatemala: Tierra del Relampago Verde

  Author/photographer: Thor Janson Published by Artemis Edinter Spanish/English 240 pages, color photography   “Biologist, conservationist and photographer Thor Janson has worked in Central America for nearly thirty years. In this book he reveals his deep love and respect for the land and its inhabitants through 250 stunning color photographs accompanied by short descriptive text. An introduction by anthropologist Robert […]

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Fugitive’s arrest closes the book on frying-pan caper

Ready for action: Monoloco owners Jean-Louis Trombetta and Billy Burns

    U.S. authorities recently arrested one of their most-wanted fugitives in California–an alleged mobster-murderer from Boston who had been in hiding or on the run for 16 years. For two businessmen in La Antigua Guatemala, the June 22 arrest of James “Whitey” Bulger, 81, dashed hopes of ever claiming a million-dollar reward (later upped to $2 million) to turn […]

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Why does La Antigua Guatemala now have more aldeas?

View of Antigua from one of its new aldeas, El Hato (guido lucci)

Most cities in Guatemala were founded in the 1540s as part of the Spanish territorial “order.” Today municipalities are divided into various categories of smaller urban areas: aldeas, caserios, barrios, colonias and lotificaciones. While aldea may be translated as a village, aldeas are not necessarily occupied by Mayas, as La Antigua Guatemala, in fact, has no Maya inhabitants. Antigua has […]

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My Guatemala

Author/photographer: Hanne Linder KOM Publishing ( Graphic design: MILLA Design Printed in Guatemala by Print Studio 222 pages, color photography “My Guatemala brings you a powerful encounter with the people and the environment the author has gotten to know throughout more than 20 years. It all comes together as a colorful and fulfilling book about the country, the culture […]

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The Gallon Jug Rainforest

The ornate hawk-eagle, the most beautiful eagle on Earth

After an expedition to the Sierra Madre of Chiapas, I was returning to Guatemala recently only to be greeted at the border by a glitch in the system and a real-life Catch-22. A new regulation says foreign-plated vehicles have to stay out of Guatemala for 90 days while the driver is welcome to return. So, having some time on my […]

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Fotokids Anniversary

Fotokis 20th Anniversary

Twenty years of tackling poverty through photography Surrounded by 40 acres of toxic garbage, in the middle of Central America’s largest and most dangerous landfill, isn’t exactly where most people gain inspiration. However, for ex-Reuters photojournalist Nancy McGirr, the smell of burning plastic, combined with the sight of cardboard houses and gardens of sewage, is where Fotokids first began. Originally […]

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The Heart of the Mayan World

A candid chat with INGUAT’s Walter Fischer Imagine a place with volcanoes and mountains, jungles and deserts, white sands and black beaches … but while you and I have already discovered the beauty of Guatemala, the majority of the world remains oblivious. INGUAT, the country’s tourism board, has embarked on a 10-year campaign to increase tourism in the country at […]

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August 2011 in Revue Magazine

If a picture is worth 1,000 words, the Fotokids NGO could fill a library with its successes. Celebrating its 20th anniversary this month, Fotokids was founded in 1991 by photojournalist Nancy McGirr with the aim of using photography to break the cycle of poverty for the children of the Guatemala City dump. From six students using three cheap plastic cameras, […]

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