Guatemala is still, in many ways, what the Americas looked like when the Spanish arrived in the New World. It is one of richest countries in the world for traditional culture and ecotourism. Apart from its archaeological wonders and the variety and vitality of its indigenous cultures, Guatemala's physical beauty is stunning. A verdant landscape of rain forests, highland cloud forests, white-water rivers, volcanoes and lakes are protected as national parks and wildlife reserves. Guatemala is one of the world's richest areas of biological diversity.