HISTORY, GUNS & GUERILLAS: DISCOVER EL SALVADOR

Michael Trout - Jan 23, 2007
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Between 1996 and 2006, 7.3 million visitors helped El Salvador earn a total of $ 1.7 billion. Most tourists are attracted by local amazing beaches, but gradually, a new tourist product related to the country’s history is getting popular.

 

 

In 1992, the twelve-year-long civil war came to and end. It left the country exhausted. However, local government created a project that would present the recent events in both an educational and interesting way. Former guerillas agreed to participate on the project.

 

Nowadays, they offer to take visitors on tours of former battlefields or mountain hideouts for a fee. In the northern area of Chaltenango, a group of the guerillas recently restored a series of mountain caves and bunkers that used to serve as hospitals and hideouts during the civil war. An enthusiast may even chose to spend the night in small cabins to feel the true spirit of the place.

 

 

The former Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (or FMLN), which led the guerilla uprising, has recently created the so-called “peace route”. It takes visitors to the mountain town of Perquin, which served the FMLN as headquarters during the fighting. Here, the Museum of the Revolution features cannons, uniforms, and even pieces of Soviet weaponry.

 

Furthermore, the historical background is presented in the form of photographs, combat plans, gun fragments and other war memorabilia. “The objective of the museum is simply to serve as a point of historical reference for future generations,” said Rolando Caceres, the museum’s director. The museum was founded in the mid-nineties and attracts both foreign tourists and local inhabitants, who are eager to learn in detail about recent history.

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