Blogs from Western Highlands, Guatemala, Central America Caribbean - page 3


Initially I hadn't planned to check out the massive market in Chichicastenango. It is held every Thursday and Sunday and I wasn't sure if either of those days would fit into my plan. It's possible to visit on a day trip from Antigua or Lake Atitlán as many shuttles offer the service - for a price. But because I summited Volcán Tajumulco much earlier than anticipated, I ended up with plenty of time. After an extra rest day in Xela I took off for Chichi the day before the market to spend the night in order to get an early viewing before the tour buses and shuttles arrived. A lot of stuff was set up Saturday afternoon in the market but I went back again at 7:30 in the morning. The expanse had doubled in size ... read more
Church Steps
In Front of the Church
Lots of Flower Vendors

Yesterday I completed the final objective of Central America's high points, Volcán Tajumulco in Guatemala. Even though it is the highest of the high points it was by no means the most difficult. Actually, it was quite easy once we got to the trailhead, a 2 hour o'dark-thirty drive from Xela. Most people do the trek as an overnighter with a camp very high close to the summit. That normally involves taking chicken buses to and from the trailhead, each way a 3½ hour trip. Moreover, it is purportedly very cold and windy at the camp making for an uncomfortable and sleepless night. One day round trip was the way to go and I was lucky one of the tour operators had such a trip going the day after I arrived in Xela. $US ≈ 7.7 ... read more
Volcán Tajumulco
Volcán Tacaná
Volcán Tajumulco

Ostatnie dwa dni spędziłem nad jeziorem Atitlan. Początkowo miałem zamiar zatrzymać się w San Pedro la Laguna, ale tylu ludzi w Xela odradzało mi to miejsce, że zdecydowałem się na coś innego. Wybór padł na wioskę Santa Cruz la Laguna, a przyczynił się do tago właściciel mojego hostelu, który słyszał od swoich gości same pozytywy na temat hostelu ¨Iguana Perdida¨ w Santa Cruz. Aby się dostać nad jezioro Atitlan jadę chicken busami do Panajachel (dwie przesiadki w Los Encuentros i Solola), a stamtąd płynę jakieś 20 min wodnym busem (lancha) do Santa Cruz. Powoli zaczynam się przyzwyczajać do chcken busow:-). Początkowo ich unikałem (głównie przez zrozmiar moich nóg, które nie mieszczą sie między siedzeniami), ale widzę, że da radę się przemęczyć w tym czymś 2-3 godziny. Chicken busy to stare wysłużone a... read more
Motto życiowe hostelu Iguana perdida
Coś wleciało do kwiatuszka
Przystań w Santa Cruz o poranku

Wczoraj wybrałem się na dwudniowy trekking na wulkan Tajumulco – 4220m. Wulkan uważany jest za najwyższy szczyt Ameryki Centralnej. Od czasu pobytu białego człowieka na kontynencie amerykańskim nie zanotowano erupcji tego wulkanu i uznawany jest on za wygasły. Idę tam z agencją Quetzaltrekkers. Agencja ta to organizacja non profit, która pieniądze klientów przeznacza na różne projekty rozwojowe w gwatenalskich szkołach. Przewodnicy to woluntariusze. Do wyboru są też agencje komercyjne, ale są droższe i kasa trafia do kieszeni prywatnych. Trekking poprzedza – dzień wcześniej – spotkanie w siedzibie agencji, na którym omawiane są zasady obowiązujące podczas trekkingu. Dodatkowo można sobie wypożyczyć sprzęt, którego nam brakuje, a który będzie potrzebny na trekkingu tj. namiot, spiwór, materac itp. Tak naprawdę to nie ma sensu niczego przywozi... read more
Początek trekkingu
Base camp :)
W oczekiwaniu na zachód słońca

After leaving Antigua (and that wonderful coffee farm!) we spent a few days in Xela. Roger and I were pretty excited to show them life here. We celebrated my birthday at a restaurant that overlooks all of Xela and visited TRAMA for some souvenirs. We also went to the cemetery to share the legend of Vanushka (died from a broken heart), and ate out at all our favorite restaurants, bars, etc. It was fun sharing this part of life with friends from back home! We decided to spend our last weekend together at the ocean, so Saturday morning we started our last leg of the adventure. We started the day off with a trip to some volcanic hot springs about an hour away from Xela. SO RELAXING. We just layed around the hot springs, relaxing and ... read more
Start of the sunset
Group shot!

Wczoraj po całodziennej podróży z San Cristobal de las Casas dotarłem do miasta Quetzaltenango w Gwatemali. Jechałem autobusem turystycznym. Kwestia przejazdu pomiędzy oboma krajami wygląda tak, że w miejscowości granicznej Ciudad Cuauhtemoc wysiadamy z busa meksykańskiego, przechodzimy odprawę paszportową, przekraczamy granicę i ładujemy się do busa gwatemalskiego, który czeka już podstawiony po gwatemalskiej stronie. Nie ma czegoś takiego jest bezpośrednie przekroczenie granicy w jednym busie. Z daleka widać, że Gwatemala to kraj gór i wulkanów. Cały horyzont przed nami to góry i stożki wulkanów. Samo miasto graniczne to nic specjalnego. Dużo straganów i syfu. Najlepiej to od razu stamtą spadać. Później robi się już fajniej i droga wiedzie wzdłuż malowniczej górskiej rzeki. Dookoła wysokie zalesione góry. Trochę przypominało mi to ni... read more
Uliczka w Xela
Baseny termalne we Fuentes Georginas
W basenie

All I really managed to get through in that last blog post was their 1st/2nd day in Guatemala-- yikes!! We really packed a whole bunch into just 2 weeks, but hopefully I can get a bit further on sharing their trip with this blog post :) I left off with us leaving Tikal (after getting our plane tickets, passports, etc back). From the airport in Guatemala City we took a cab to Antigua and headed off to the hostel Roger and I stayed in previously. Because this was our travel day from Hell, our reservations got lost and we ended up roomless for the night. Luckily, the lady who owns Villa Esthela is really nice and flexible and found enough beds for us to stay the night (for free), and helped us out by calling some ... read more
View from the hike
View from the hike
View from the hike

Our second day here at the lake. Having lots of fun exploring and walking around. Went up to the main market area this morning for some Arroz De Leche (rice milk) for breakfast. The last time I was here there were not so many cars but now seems there are so many Tuk Tuks and personal cars it is hard to walk on the road without almost getting run over. The people here are still so friendly even after being invaded with back pack travelers. They must think some are quite strange with their white skin and long hair dreads. Gla we are staying where we are which is off the beaten path and I do mean path, so nice they paved it, for so many years it was just a dirt path. Most of the ... read more
Fishing on the lake
Can't get enough of this iew!
The Volcan we are sitting at the base of

February 5th, Rog and I woke up early to start our trek to Guatemala City so we could pick up his sister, her boyfriend, and our roommate at the intl airport. It's a good thing we decided on an hour earlier than normal because that was the day the chicken buses decided to protest the government and shut down all major highways. I wish I was joking, you guys. But nope. We get on our first chicken bus, and I pop a dremamine (super sleepy but no motion sickness) since it was supposed to be just a straight 4 hour ride there. Ha! After an hour the bus stops and no one has any idea whats going on. We finally get informed that the bus we're on is heading back to Xela and there's another bus ... read more
Trumpet Tree
Jason, Man of the Woods

ahhhh I am SO sorry I have been a horrible blog updater!! With finishing up our time at TRAMA and then having visitors for 2 weeks, this is one of the first chances I've had to just sit around and not do anything! I have a feeling it will take a few blog posts to catch up with the end of January and most of February -- again, I APOLOGIZE! The last week of January was a bit of a busy one for us - we traveled around to a few different places with a great girl we met volunteering at TRAMA. Her name is Chiara and she's Italian. She's back in Italy now (actually, Scotland visiting her sister) but we're still in touch and I think we will be for quite some time :) Chiara, ... read more
Chiara in front of the big one!
The biggest one there

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