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Ecotourism in Latin America Directory

Chiminos Island Lodge, Guatemala

Name of Lodge or Ecotourism Project: Chiminos Island Lodge.

Location: Guatemala - in Punta de Chimino on Laguna Petexbatun in the Peten region of Guatemala, reached only by boat, an hour away from Flores. Flores International Airport is the nearest airport, which in turn is a short flight from Guatemala City.


Year Established: 1995

Tourism activities: Nature trails, birdwatching tours, fishing, snorkelling, archaeological tours to various Mayan ruins.

Ecolodge / Accommodation details: Six bungalows hidden away in the rainforest.

Responsible tourism practices. How is impact upon the local environment minimized?: Our ecolodge is a non-profit conservation family orienated project and a private reserve. We are voluntary workers, and do not distribute any earnings, nor any other kind of benefits. All our bungalows have water treatment plants for sewage. We separate wastes for recycle, and organic wastes for compost in a nearby farm. Jointly with the nearby National Park, we are preserving the only jungle remaining and wildlife in this area of Guatemala.

How is the local community involved?: All of our workers are from the local community. We only provide lodging and food service to our guests. All of the remaining services (boat transfers, guides, horse tours, archaeological tours etc.) are provided by the local community, so they can benefit from the tourism arriving to this area of Guatemala and they would also get involved in the preservation of the jungle and archaeological ruins.

Does the presence of ecotourism leave a positive impact upon the local environment and community? If so, how?: Yes, a big one. As our ecolodge is located in a remote area of Guatemala, the only alternative for locals to survive was by looting the jungle, hunting wildlife and looting archaeological ruins. Ecotourism arriving to the area, have allowed them to have regular jobs, providing services to the ecolodge and to the tourists and working for the archaeological projects in the area. Right now they are learning that they do also have to do efforts to preserve the natural resources to be able to continue their benefit from ecotourism. With the help and involvement of guests from our ecolodge, we have aware some foreign organizations to contribute to the small nearby community, and we have been able to provide them with clean water, and a school.

Who owns the lodging facilities (ecolodge)? Is it communally, or individually owned?: Family owned.

Further information: Chiminos Island Lodge have been featured by: several times in the travel sections of Prensa Libre, Sunday Times Magazine, The Guardian, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, Corriere della Sera, etc. And several specialized ecotourism websites as and

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