Published: November 26th 2009November 25th 2009
The top of the World
Worth the hike - an aerial view of Semuc Champey
Imagine a place that has been completely untouched - a pure natural attraction which just a few dodgy sets of steps to help you access - this is Semuc Champey.
First though a two hour journey from Coban with the last hour a unmade road to make even the most secure teeth shake loose we arrived in the small market town of Lanquin. The people here seem much smaller than even their other Mayan relatives and this seemed really apparent in the market where Neil had to duck continually to not bang into the stall canvas - he looked like gandalf visiting the shires!
The people are so friendly and we enjoyed just wandering around before the final 40 minutes to Semuc where the most amazing waterfalls and natural swimming pools awaited. What we had not taken into account though was we were on the adrenalin tour! and we had a mad bunch of 20 something Belgiums in our small group of 9 people. Our guide took us to the top of the falls and we then proceeded to jump, dive and swim across the different pools - the water going from cool to warm and if you stood
Kirsty taking the plunge
One of the jumps I was brave enough to do
still long enough the fish nibbled your ankles which felt quite odd.
The final section involved a huge jump of 10 mtres but lucky for us the water was tool low below to force us into the jump instead some of the group climbed down on a single rope to see the caves. To be honest absolutely no way on earth would our travel insurance have covered this one so we just watched and swam in the upper pool!
The we returned and enjoyed lunch and had the opportunity to buy handmade chocolate from the cutest little girl - only 5Q so 40p and around us we can see the pods of coco growing so tasted just fab.
Finally a climb of 40 mins to the high viewing point - honestly I wondered if it was really worth it until I finally got there and thought yes this is like being on the top of the world. Only emergency was a brit from Shepherds Bush broke her flip flops on the climb so I lent her my trusted havaianos for the rest of the day as I was back in trainers by then.
Returned then to
A view from the base of the falls
the car park and then ready to leave for the Lanquin caves but not before I thought I´d left the camera at the viewing point. I don´t know what was worse the thought of the climb to go and retrieve or losing it - the whole bus was so cool - they all helped me search my day pack and thank god it was there so I had to endure much teasing for the rest of the journey while my new Belgium amigos checked I still had the camera!
Languin caves were dark, damp and very hot - not the best we have seen on the trip but worth a peak - unfortunately the bats decided not to do the mass fly out of the cave today!
There are more photos below