Blogs from Verapaz Region, Guatemala, Central America Caribbean


After a 6h bus ride from Río Dulce in a small bus without AC and without WC and with only 1 break, we arrived at 8PM in Lanquín. The street had been pretty bad and bumpy, but the view was amazing, such a beautiful countryside! Our bus driver drove like a madman, but he was quite nice and stopped a few times for us to take pictures. In the bus, we also met Tina from Nîmes in France, a very nice girl who is travelling for 5 weeks in Guatemala. She was visiting her boyfriend who lives close to Guatemala city, but he had to work and so she travelled the country on her own. She had booked the same hostel as us and so we took the next shuttle from Lanquín to our hostel (Greengo’s ... read more

Nach einer sehr langen 6-stündigen Busfahrt von Río Dulce in einem sehr kleinen Bus ohne Klimaanlage oder Toilette und nur einem kurzen Stop sind wir gegen 20h endlich in Lanquín angekommen. Die Straße dorthin war sehr schlecht gewesen, mit sehr vielen Schlaglöchern, aber die Aussicht und die Landschaft waren einfach atemberaubend ! Unser Busfahrer fuhr zwar wie ein verrückter, war aber eigentlich sehr nett und hat sogar 2 Mal angehalten, damit wir Photos machen konnten. Im Bus habe ich Tina aus Nîmes in Frankreich kennengelernt. Sie war sehr nett und reiste für 5 Wochen durch Guatemala. Sie war dort um ihren Freund zu besuchen, der in der Nähe von Guatemala City lebt, aber da er arbeiten musste, reiste sie alleine durchs Land. Sie hatte dasselbe Hostel gebucht wie wir und so haben wir auch das nächste ... read more

After a full day of travel yesterday, Semuc Champey had no chance but to deliver. If not, I would be the grumpiest girl on Earth. Indefinitely. With neither of us interested in the caving part (which sees you wade through a lake inside a pitch black cave lit only by hand-held candles and then make a 4m jump into the water (I still haven’t met anyone who has survived the cave without so much as a cut or bruise) we decided to ditch the tour and DIY it. We were planning on walking into town and getting a ute from there but settled for the hostel to take us as we didn’t know exactly how long it would take to walk into town and we’d heard that most of the Utes leave before 9am, not giving ... read more

Lets go South – next destination on the famous Gringo Trail (where everyone goes) is Semuc Champey/Lanquín. For the first and probably the last time of this trip, we booked a shuttle – a minivan full of backpackers brought us without detour to the destination. Kati asked us the night before, why Americans have that questionable reputation being noisy,… a Gentleman in the bus killed a bottle of rum during the drive and “entertained” the whole bus. Here you go, Kati – just kidding, he was just an unlucky example. As at most of the places, this rumor is just correct for a really small percentage. We arrived in the Jungle of East Guatemala. The highly recommended Zephyr Lodge was full so we stayed close to the river at the Oasis Hostel. Bathing in the ice-cold ... read more
Semuc Champey
The adventure route!
..and through the hills.

At Lanquín itself wasn't much to do. 2 nights was more than enough, especially after what happened: The morning after we arrived, I woke up really early as usual.. I wake up every morning between 5:00 and 7:00 since I'm traveling. So this day was like any other. I got up and went to the restaurant in my pj's, asked for a bowl to eat the cereals with milk we bought the other day and read a book from the shelf. Around 10:00 the others came for breakfast. They both already took a shower and were ready to go. I still had to take a shower so I went to the cabin to take my stuff. While showering, a frog suddenly came through the drain. I jumped out of the shower with my body still covered ... read more

Arriving in Semuc Champey from Flores involved two buses and one ride in the back of a pick up truck. Standing on the back of the truck seemed pretty fun to start with, despite the crazy bumps in the road, but after half hour of gripping for dear life on the steepest roads (up and down) I have ever experienced, arriving at Utopia was literally like arriving in paradise. I can't rave about this hostel enough, set close to the river, about 8km from Lanquin, the nearest village, and 3km from the Semuc Champey Park. The hostel is basically a massive wooden hut, with beautiful views, everything made from local wood, delicious meals and the most chilled out atmosphere ever. Each morning I woke up to stunning views slowly revealing from the clouds just outside, no ... read more

Semuc Champey is a series of limestone pools above a famed 300m bridge in the central region of Guatemala. It is. Absolutely beautiful and has a deserved reputation of being a great day out. Semuc is difficult to access, so most toursists stay in a pretty small village called Lanquin which is in a neighbouring valley. I stayed in a lovely hillside hostel with great views and a fantastic atmosphere. Lanquin is very, very small and doesn't have much to do, only having a few comedors for eating and a few roadside shops. the main restaurants are inside the hotels or hostels and wifi is rarely available. Coming here was a real get away from realit (despite being surrounded by tourists!) To get there from Flores I took a shuttle bus from my hostel to the ... read more

Here's what we got ourselves into so far out in the middle of nowhere...The beautiful, quiet, friendly Utopia eco-hostel set on a cacao farm only 3km from caves we could go exploring and the greenish blue pools of cool water at Semuc Champey that we could swim in. Our first thought upon arrival was that we could stay here a very long time. In fact, we were only booked in for 3 nights originally but we booked in for a 4th straight away. We thought we'd stay in the dorm but the opportunity to sleep in hammocks presented itself and we couldn't pass it up. Being set on a cacao farm was the perfect excuse to go on a chocolate tour which started out on the farm with a look and taste of the raw cacao ... read more
In the Caves...
Death Defying Jump

From Antigua we decided to head up to Semuc Champey. We've heard it was beautiful and well worth the trip to the middle of nowhere. Since it was a long ride we planned to break it up with a stop at the Biotopo del Quetzal. We really wanted to use local transport instead of the tourist shuttles, but after talking with tourist info in Antigua we decided to take the shuttle for 125GTQ. It would have taken us all the way to Semuc Champey, but we still opted to hop out at the Biotopo and do a walk. We spent the 40GTQ each to go in at a nature reserve that had to have some hotel rooms in order to keep the land. Unfortunately they had no room for us, but we did have a room ... read more
The Drive

We travelled from Panajachel back to Antigua for a night as we found that all the shuttles to Lanquin went through Antigua so decided to break up the journey. It was great returning to a familiar place and being able to revisit our favourite haunts including the sweet shop and the bakery for some banana bread. Our shuttle to Lanquin was supposed to pick us up at 8am but it didn't arrive until about 8:30am. We then continued to drive around Antigua picking up other passengers for the next hour. At our final pickup in Antigua the driver said to use the toilet as it would be three hours until the next one. Unfortunately things didn't go to plan as there was a road block which we sat in for nearly an hour and a half. ... read more
Semuc Champey
Semuc Champey
Semuc Champey

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