Loma Linda Nature Trails, a path to adventure
Experience the adrenaline of canopy and rappel, enjoy the sound and scenery of waterfalls, rejoice in bird watching or the pleasure of a walk in a wooded area, is the paradise offered by Senderos Naturales Loma Linda, an initiative promoted by the Asociación Sostenible para el Desarrollo Integral y Turístico de Loma Linda (ASODILL).
This association began its activities in 2000 and promotes the conservation and sustainable use of the community’s natural resources. ASODILL started working on tourism after a foreign volunteer contacted some tour operators in Quetzaltenango. This allowed tourists visiting the city of Quetzaltenango to venture to the community of Loma Linda as backpackers.
ASODILL is located in the community of Loma Linda, in the municipality of El Palmar, Quetzaltenango. The place is located 207 kilometers from Guatemala City and access is via the Inter-American Highway CA-1 West, traveling 200 kilometers to the departmental capital of Quetzaltenango. Then take the CITO-180 road to the department of Retalhuleu.
According to member estimates, 30% of the visitors are foreign tourists and the rest are domestic tourists. ASODILL has 34.86 hectares of communal forest area, where you can identify water sources, waterfalls, coffee growing areas, pacaya, ornamental palm among other species of economic and cultural value. In addition, there are specific areas for bird watching (some endemic), including the Quetzal.
ASODILL’s tourism activity is focused on offering interpretive tours related to environmental education and promoting the care of natural resources. Currently, ASODILL offers activities such as night tours for flora and fauna sightings, bird watching and waterfall trails, tours in the coffee and forest areas, and interpretive tours of flora and fauna along trails. In addition, the site offers canopy tours, rappelling, swimming pools, lodging, and meals (with prior reservation).
The attractions offered by ASODILL fall within the range of activities related to ecotourism and bird watching. Therefore, through its project “Senderos Naturales Loma Linda, camino a la aventura” ASODILL promotes ecotourism as a means to conserve flora and fauna species, water resources and the scenic beauty of the place.
In 2020 and 2021, as with many tourism projects in Guatemala and worldwide, the Covid pandemic19 strongly affected ASODILL’s tourism activities. However, by 2022 the site registers an increase in visits, mainly from local and national tourists, most of whom travel through organized groups.
This shows that the tourism situation is gradually improving and that local tourism is one of the first to be reactivated. ASODILL members are hopeful that by 2023 visits will continue to increase and that they will be able to receive many more tourists.
ASODILL members know that there are still many challenges and a long way to go, but they are also aware that their territory is a unique space, full of natural wealth and indispensable resources for the community and its inhabitants.
That is why they consider it important to move forward with this project, because they are aware of their right to self-determination and seek to achieve their economic development, working all possible strategies to care for, conserve and protect their territory.
For more information you can visit the Facebook page: Senderos Naturales Loma Linda, call 56223393 and 32229165, or write to the email firstname.lastname@example.org