Top things to do in El Oriente

Basilica in Esquipulas

Basílica de Esquipulas

A massive structure that has resisted the power of earthquakes for almost 250 years, the basilica is approached through a pretty park and up a wide flight of steps. The impressive facade and towers are floodlit at n…
Archaeological Site in Quiriguá

Quiriguá Archaeological Site

Despite the sticky heat and (sometimes) bothersome mosquitoes, Quiriguá is a wonderful place. The giant stelae on the Gran Plaza (Great Plaza) are all much more worn than those at Copán. To impede further deteriorat…
Park in Jalapa

Parque Ecoturístico Cascadas de Tatasirire

Set on 15 hectares of heavily forested valley overlooking Jalapa, this private reserve features 6km of well-signposted walking trails, taking in the small Cascada Altar and the more impressive 15m Catarata Tatasirir…
Volcano in Ipala

Volcán de Ipala

The 1650m volcano, Volcán de Ipala, is notable for its especially beautiful clear crater-lake measuring nearly 1km around and nestled below the summit at 1493m. The dramatic hike to the top takes you from 800m to 16…
Volcano in Volcán de Quetzaltepeque

Volcán de Quetzaltepeque

About 10km east of the village of Quetzaltepeque, this volcano tops out at 1900m. The walk to the top is tough going – through thick subtropical pine forest, with the trail disappearing in sections. But if you have …
Museum in El Oriente

Museo de Paleontología, Arqueología y Geología Ingeniero Roberto Woolfolk Saravia

This small, out-of-the-way museum is filled with prehistoric skeletons – some reconstructed and rather menacing-looking. Most of the bones of three giant creatures are here, including those of a huge ground sloth so…
Cafe in Ipala


Offers refreshingly tasty coffee and nice comida tipica (regional food). Service is friendly service and some staff speak excellent English. Its decor is simple, but the place is an oasis of sorts, well worth stoppi…
Guatemalan in Chiquimula

Casa Lú

This chic, black-and-red restaurant has the look of a sushi shop but serves a variety of local Guatemalan dishes as well as the requisite pizzas, pastas and burgers, and some decent cocktails too. The frozen margari…
Fast Food in Esquipulas

La Rotonda

Opposite Rutas Orientales bus station, this is a round building with chairs arranged around a circular open-air counter under a big awning. It's a welcoming place – clean and fresh. There are plenty of options to ch…
Chinese in Esquipulas

Restaurant El Angel

This main-street Chinese eatery does all the standard dishes, plus steaks and a good range of licuados (milkshakes). Home delivery is available, and it has daily specials on the cheap, too.