Best time to travel to Guatemala

Birdwatching

Guatemala's rich avifauna boasts the fairy-like quetzal and over 700 more species

Birdwatching in Guatemala - Best Time
Photo by

© Chris Engelhardt

There are nearly 720 species of local birds in Guatemala. One of the prominently sought after species is the colourful quetzal considered the national bird and a symbol of liberty and love. Bright colours, splendid wings, and its exuberant elongated tail make it look like a fairy firebird. Both species are endangered. Guatemalan highlands contain endemic to the North Central American Highland birds including Green-throated Mountain-gem, Highland Guan, Wine-throated Hummingbird, Blue-and-white Mockingbird, and Rufous-browed Wren. Most birdwatching hotspots are located in the central to southern parts of the country, in the highland areas, though some excellent birding sites may also be found in the northern lowlands. Picturesque Antigua is one of the favourite birding locations. At the same time, some unique species may be found only in western Guatemala, namely such birds as Azure-rumped Tanager, Horned Guan, Bearded Screech-Owl, Pink-headed Warbler, and Black-capped Siskin. Besides endemic species, a warm tropical climate of Guatemala provides the perfect habitat for a wide range of migratory birds that coinhabit the region with local birds. Companies offer the birdwatching tours throughout the entire year. However, the nesting season​ between February and April is the best. The only drawback of the season must be seasonal fire smokes which may worsen the sceneries a little.

Streak-backed Oriole
Streak-backed Oriole
Resplendent Quetzal, national bird of Guatemala
Resplendent Quetzal, national bird of Guatemala
Wine-throated Hummingbird (Atthis ellioti)
Wine-throated Hummingbird (Atthis ellioti)
Blue-and-white Mockingbird (Melanotis hypoleucus)
Blue-and-white Mockingbird (Melanotis hypoleucus)
Pink-headed Warbler (Ergaticus versicolor)
Pink-headed Warbler (Ergaticus versicolor)
Check best times to visit
Guatemala