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Honeymoon in El Salvador

El Salvador's name in the indigenous language is Cuscatlán, which means “land of jewels”: these jewels are its people, landscapes, lakes, volcanoes, beaches, wildlife and ancient culture.

El Tunco Beach

At just 37 kilometers from San Salvador, Playa El Tunco has become a favorite destination Route for Sun and Sea, especially those who enjoy nightlife and the best waves for surfing. The characteristic image, an impressive rock formation in front of a mouth, surrounded by surfers of all parts of the  world is becoming increasingly popular.

The beach is well known for its parties every weekend with live music from different genres: from rock concerts, reggae and salsa. As for its bars and restaurants, these include The Guitar, a bohemian and relaxed place, D’Rock, where a party is guaranteed, with music and drinks until dawn, and The Bocana, the favorite place for surfers. Many visitors also choose to light bonfires on the beach  and spend the night under the stars.

Apart from its beauty, El Tunco has also become an important destination for surfers from around the world. For $15 an hour, taught by local surfers take the first wave of newcomers, while professionals impress visitors with their skills surfing waves that reach 6 meters. The best season for surfing is between April and August, when the swell is right.

No need to take a board. At the site there are several rental options, usually $20 dollars a day.

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Sea Turtle Watching

Do tourism, support conservation and help communities who want to make sea turtles a tourist attraction by avoiding the collection of eggs for consumption.

Sea Turtle Monitoring season

From May to September, with the peak season in August and September.

You can experience it at:

- Cóbanos Sonsonate beach

- Downtown San Diego, La Libertad

- Playa San Blas, La Libertad

- Isla de Méndez, Bahía de Jiquilisco

- Isla San Sebastian Bay Jiquilisco

Cóbanos beach

The protected area of Los Cóbanos is one of the few areas where the Carey Turtle nests and El Salvador is the most important, from Baja California to Ecuador, for reproduction. Four of the seven species of sea turtles in the world nest on the beaches of San Salvador  and this wonderful show can be seen at Los Cóbanos at night from May to September with the peak season in August and September. Also you will find out about the efforts of marine turtle conservation made by the local community.

Release of sea turtles

During the season from August to December turtle eggs that have been grown in hatcheries begin their process of emergence, so, small turtles are born. These turtles are released into the sea to make their incredible journey which will last from 11 to 20 years before returning to lay their eggs on the beach they were born. You can live this unique experience of releasing a newborn sea turtle, making a conservation tourism contribution to the preservation of these beautiful specimens.

Izalco: Tecpan Izalcó

In Náhuatl it means “Place of the obsidian homes.” During the colonization this municipality had two churches because it was socially divided.  Dolores Izalco (northern part) had a concentration of Creole and crossbreed population. In Asuncion Izalco (southern part) the population was concentrated by indigenous people. In the middle of the last century both localities had merged into one.

The church of Dolores was built before 1570.  Although several earthquakes in different times have damaged the church, it still preserves the belfries that have the same style of decoration, crowned also by a dome and a cross.

As for the Asuncion church, its origins go back to the 16th century, but it was destroyed by the Santa Marta earthquake in 1773. Its ruins are still standing and beside them, another church was built with a colonial style.

Izalco is the only municipality in the country that has two mayoralties: the Municipal mayoralty and the Communal mayoralty. This is because the Communal mayoralty guards the indigenous legacy of the community. The municipality keeps this legacy alive by celebrating 32 confraternities each year.

The Beacon of the Pacific

Located 8 km away from Izalco and with a height of 1,885 meters, it forms part of the Volcano Complex, besides Cerro Verde and the Ilamatepec (Santa Ana Volcano).

According to the popular version it originated in 1770. Nonetheless, the historian Jorge Lardé and Larín show that its origins go back to March 19, 1722 when “a new crater that threw up fire, lava and ash” was formed, which made an important eruption in 1745.  The flames could be seen from the ocean, some of the ships even used the eruption as a guiding point to get to the Puerto of Acajutla, earning the name of the “Beacon of the Pacific.”

It erupted almost continuously for 196 years, its activity was so great that it formed a cone of 650 meters on the local plain (1,952 above sea level), with a crater of 250 meters in diameter.

In 1966 the last eruption was registered, since then it has been noticed that the activity and temeperature of its fumaroles are gradually diminishing. This is a scenario of natural habitat diversity such as forests, high plateaus, vegetation on top of lava, lava itself and sulfuric lagoons and disturbed habitats that are typical of the high lands of the northern regions in Central America.

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Volcanoes and colonial route

A multi-destination tourist route that runs through Central America following the old Camino Real that was built by the Spaniards over a preexisting indigenous route, parallel and transversal to the volcanic mountain chains of the Pacific coast.

This route is considered in the tourist industry as the most important example of regional touristic integration because it allows its nature, volcanoes and a series of towns that were built during the Spaniard colonial era to be admired simultaneously.  With this integrated effort at a national level, the services and tourist products of 33 municipalities are relied on.

Xiriualtique, Bahía de las estrellas

Jiquilisco Bay is an entrance of the sea where you can see 27 islands located on the shore of Usulután the east of El Salvador.

Centuries ago it was called Lencas Xiriualtique in the Potón language which means Bay of the Stars, due to the reflection of these in the peaceful waters of the Bay.

The Xiriualtique mangrove area is the largest in the country and one of the most beautiful maritime ecosystems in El Salvador. It is also a global priority, because it represents nearly 47% of the mangroves of the Pacific North Coast in Mesoamerica.

In the year 2005 it was declared a Ramsar site - an agreement relating to the preservation of wetlands ( mangroves, beaches, islands and lagoons) of relevance to climate balance.

The Bay retains 37 species in danger of extinction and more than 58 threatened species, in 2006 it was declared to have a Critical status.

The Xiriualtique Biosphere Reserve is a breeding area for 290 species of birds, the beaches are used by four species of sea turtles to nest, including Baule turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) catalogued in danger of extinction.

They have also identified 317 species of plants, highlighting the need of the mangrove forest for the production of oxygen and seafood, it also protects against erosion and hurricane damage. There are 93 species of fish, 88 species of invertebrates, 43 species of invertebrates, 57 species of crustaceans, 30 species of molluscs, 13 species of amphibians, 36 species of reptiles.

Surfing in San Salvador

Surfing has been practiced in El Salvador for the last 40 years which makes El Salvador one of the surfing pioneers in the world.

The multiple “spots”, nice water temperature throughout the year, the international category of the waves, considering facts like consistency, velocity, height, and the important human features such as the hospitality and kindness of the people are reasons why this beautiful country has received surfers from all over the world since the late 60s and nowadays it is amongst the best 10 destinations in the world for surfing.

The National and International Championships are held on beaches like: Punta Roca, El Tunco, El Zonte, El Cocal, Las Flores, Punta Mango, El 59, and many others.

One of the most important facts is the touristic infrastructure, which is of great value at the beaches. In El Salvador there are many quality hotels, restaurants, surf board factories, surf teachers, and tour operators who will make your surf season unforgettable.

Visit El Salvador, one of the most beautiful countries in America, where friendly people are waiting to share the waves with you and make you experience a tropical paradise.

Source: www.elsalvador.travel

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