Blogs from Flores, Petén Region, Guatemala, Central America Caribbean - page 7

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Justin and I decided to head into Guatemala today, leaving the Frasers in Belize. We took a taxi from San Ignasia to the border for 5usd apiece (could have for 7.50 total but missed that deal). We made it to Flores, Guatamala just before noon and checked into Los Amigos Hostel. We met a Dutch girl named Muriela and 3 Canadian girls from Victoria. Went swimming with Muriela and Justin and wandered the town. Got called a gringo countless times and practiced Spanish all day on the locals. At 4 our two australian friends (Lauren and Alyse) showed up, so we went swimming again. Got our laundry done by a local, being the first time that's happened in many years (if my mother loved me she would have done mine like the old guatamalan woman here). ... read more


Had the most amazing day at the Tikal national park. Over 160 sq km in size they have excavated just 20% of the ruins in this area. Completely protected so that the wild life and flora can continue to thrive. We had already been to ruins in Belize but these are the major ones to see and we were just blown away. The tour started with a walk through the canapy and as we went deeper into the park we arrived at the different temples and the main central Acropolis. As some parts of Guatemala still practice the Mayan religious beliefs and there was evidence of recent sacrifices within the main Acropolis. Temple wise this was a rare opportunity for us to get some exercise(!) so lots of clambering up the stone sides to get the ... read more
Neil Temple IV
The lost world
Temple V


Our first bus journey once it finally left Belize City proved to be mega easy. The driver did not believe in hanging about so we arrived in Flores in about 4.5 hours. Loved Belize but it was time to move on and by going by bus you get so see so much of the countryside along the way. It was also nice to see the war memorials just outside the city still with their poppies in place. The border was a piece of cake and as there was only four of us on the bus it meant we got through the paperwork in two minutes and paid a small fee and we were in. It was amazing how much it changed instantly. Belize is so much more Caribbean than Central American with English the official language ... read more
Flores
Casona de la Flores
Guatamala sunset


For travel journal click here: To view a photo in a larger size please click on it.... read more
North Acropolis
Temple II
Temple I


Tourist hassle From Lanquin I went to a small town Flores. This was the first time I took one of the tourist shuttles. So the busride was less interesting but surely much faster. After six or seven hours we reached the destination. But just before the busdriver stopped at an ATM nearby and said the ATM’s at Flores didn’t work. Kind of strange, especially when I saw later that the ATM’s did work. The guy that stepped in the bus said he was from the same company and wanted to drop us at a hostel and most people followed him. Of course he get’s a commission for bringing people in, but I wanted to go my own way. So I grabbed my bag from the roof of the bus and went to the place were I ... read more
Maya's wonders
Lots of monkeys at Tikal

Central America Caribbean » Guatemala » Petén Region » Flores September 23rd 2009

We must confess we hardly gave Guatemala city a chance. We arrived from San Pedro on Monday afternoon, September 21. About an hour later we were sheltering from the worst rain storm we had seen yet. The streets flooded in a matter of minutes. After an evening meal of decent pizza (again!) we left the dark and dangerous night and hid in our hotel until morning. We arose early, took a few pictures in the Parque Central, and then boarded a nice air-conditioned bus to Santa Elena. At the Santa Elena bus terminal, we were greeted warmly by a horde of taxi drivers. Our taxi driver, after offering us a much better price to Flores than the one he started out with due to a bidding war, suggested we buy our shuttle tickets to Tikal for ... read more
Into Tikal
La Ceiba
Eva and Templo II


After a short mini bus ride back to Guatemala City, we jumped on to the bus to Flores, armed with jumpers in case it was cold. Unfortunately, jumpers weren´t enough and we found ourselves shivering in our seats and praying that the journey would go quickly. It wasn´t to be, and we arrived virtually sleepless in Flores early the next morning. As soon as we got off the bus, we were surrounded by taxi drivers offering to take us straight to the Tikal ruins. As we wanted to dump our stuff at a hostel and get a couple of hours rest first, and we had managed to find another couple who felt the same, we all got in a taxi to Hostel Los Amigos and arranged for the taxi to come back at 8am to take ... read more


Waking up before sunrise to animal noises, working all day cleaning up poop and dodging the monkeys peeing on you from above, eating tasteless horrible food, covered in bug bites, mopping up toilet and rain water from the bedroom floor daily, and at night checking each other´s hair for lice while the girls seperated by paper thin walls in the room nextdoor have dance parties listening to horrible music... Ah, the life of being an ARCAS volunteer. At 5:30 am every morning we get to awaken to the noisy squawks of rescued scarlet red macaws. Occasionally we hear the loud hooting, howling and grunting of the Howler monkeys that sound like lions. We wake up at 7.00 and begin feeding animals; we are usually assigned to one or two cages but this week many volunteers have ... read more
Margays
Spider Monkeys
Monkeys


Situated in the northern part of Guatemala, the ruins of Tikal are considered by many to be the best remaining examples of Mayan architecture around. They are certainly the hottest. As we climbed onboard the battered minibus in Flores at 5am the air was thick with anticipation. Even the driver, slumped half-asleep over the wheel with headphones hanging from his ears, failed to quell the feeling of adventure. Each traveller was lost in their own thoughts and the conversation was minimal as we left the small town and headed out into morning mist. As the bus, laden with well-fed westerners and their backpacks, struggled up a hill, we entered the jungle. The anticipation was heightened by yellow warning signs at the side of the road. The first showed the shape of a rattle-snake, the second the ... read more
Tikal Temple
Temple IV at Tikal


Health Alert... From the looks of it my frequent, painful battles with gastrointestinal complications are a thing of the past, if you don´t count my erosive esopheghitis. My system is as strong as a donkey. I´m back to the good ol´days of devouring any type of street food Hondu and Guate can throw at me. Once again I´m living an intrepid, gastronomic free for all. Over all, movements are solid, frequent and of a mocca color. However, for the second year in a row I´m battling some odd skin condition. In the Middle East last summer 3 mysterious concentric circles appeared on the side of my hand. They were painful and scary looking. I even visited a hospital in Eastern Turkey only to be told that i had Herpes. Even I knew it wasnt herpes. Currently ... read more




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