A French family of four has been found safe after being lost for two days in the vast jungle of Guatemala’s famous Tikal National Park.
Authorities in Guatemala announced Friday that the two women, man and six-year-old boy were located alive deep inside the archaeological site, which contains ancient Mayan pyramids and ruins.
The family had last been seen on Wednesday touring the park before losing their way. Rescuers launched an intensive search of the dense 500 square kilometer rainforest.
Two days later, search teams were able to find and evacuate the family five kilometers from Tikal’s main ruins. Guatemalan officials said the group were “a little dehydrated” but stabilized after receiving medical evaluation and treatment.
Photos show the relieved family being assessed and cared for by first responders before being airlifted out by helicopter to Guatemala City for further evaluation.
The massive Tikal National Park sits in a remote region of northern Guatemala near the borders with Mexico and Belize. Its isolation and frequent rainstorms can make navigation difficult even for experienced hikers.
While, thankfully, there is a happy ending for this wandering French family, Guatemalan jungles do pose real dangers for tourists. In January 2022, a German man went missing for two days before being found dead in Tikal.
This region is also known to have a presence of powerful drug cartels and trafficking activity, heightening risks. Visitors are urged to only explore with authorized tour groups and licensed guides.
Costa Rica attracts many French tourists to its own jungles and national parks. We hope this incident serves as a reminder that while natural beauty abounds, vigilance is essential.
Authorities credit the extensive search efforts by Guatemalan first responders for averting tragedy and bringing the family back safely. Costa Rica applauds their dedication and professionalism in rescuing our French friends.