In addition to exploring the ruins, there are a variety of recreational opportunities in and around Tikal National Park.
You have a choice of two zip-line trajectories between raised platforms in the jungle at Tikal Canopy Tour (tel. 5819-7766, www.canopytikal.com, 7 a.m.–5 p.m. daily, $30, at the national park entrance). The first of these includes 11 platforms with zip lines ranging in length 75–150 meters while you dangle 25 meters over the forest floor. The second, more adrenaline-inducing option, includes zip lines up to 200 meters long hovering 40 meters above the safety of ground level. Pick your poison.
Specialty tours for bird-watchers can be arranged by contacting La Casa de Don David (tel. 7928-8469 or 5306-2190, www.lacasadedondavid.com) in El Remate. The lodge’s knowledgeable staff can connect you with good English-speaking local guides who know the park and its birds.
Another recommended outfitter is Guatemala City–based Cayaya Birding (tel. 5308-5160, www.cayaya-birding.com).
© Al Argueta from Moon Guatemala, 3rd Edition. Photos © Al Argueta www.alargueta.com