Wednesday, August 10, 2005

From Coban To Lago Atitlan

Been quite a few days since I was able to post, so let me attempt to catch up....

From Coban we moved on to Lanquin. There we stayed at a nice ranch that was very beautiful, called El Retiro. It was nestled into the jungle covered mountains. Cows and animals meandered around the many little cabanas people were staying in. The view of the river below from our porch was great. Even better is the same view from the hammok on our porch. From El Retiro, we made our journey to see the caves near Samuc Champey, and Samuc Champey itself, which is the beautiful river of pools that we had been hearing such good things about.

The caves at Samuc Champey turned out to be a great adventure. You went in with nothing but your swim trunks and a candle. The experience lasted about an hour and for much of it you were swimming in the dark, candle in hand, through the river running in the cave. It was beautifull inside lit up with all the candles. There was a waterfall deep inside the cave that marked the turn around point of our trip.

From there we walked to the colorful pools of Samuc Champey, where we did some hiking and swam in the various colored pools of the river. It is a beautiful place, with pool after pool of water in various colors from greens, to turquise, to deep blues.



From Lanquin, we made the very long trip (12 hours all told) to Antigua.

Antigua is a cute little colonial town with a massive volcano looming above it.



In Antigua we treated ourselves to a 5 star hotel that will forever be remembered. Built on top of old church ruins, Hotel Casa Santao Domingo is filled with amazing statues and art. Everywhere you look there are candles. Lots of candles. The grounds are perfectly kept, and parrots seemed to be everywhere. The food was fantastic as was the pool. Our rooms were great, one of them having 2 floors with art and religious statues tucked away in the corners. We lounged by day and built a fire in the room at night. We saw the town eventually and wondered through churches and old ruins from earthquakes. We came accross a tender old gentleman named Benjamin, who told us much of the history of the town. He seemed to know everything there was to know about Antigue and we soaked in as much knowledge from him as we could before saying goodbye. He was absolutely adorable!

From Antigua we moved on to Chichicastenango. There is a market in Chichi on Thursdays, and Sundays. We arrived on Saturday and saw a Mayan ritual performed at the temple on the hill that overlooks the village of Chichi. The next day was all market. All the streets were lined with make shift stalls set up the night before and there was everything you could imagine on sale. Jewelery, clothing, art, fabric, crafts of all sorts.



It was eye candy. Things were very cheap and a good haggle is expected. We did our first shopping of the trip in Chichi and made some great purchases. The maket was very colorful and fun to people watch. Amie and I took many photos there of people and various Mayan ceremonies, including a funeral procession.

We left chichi the next day and made our way via 3 busses to Lago Atitlan.



A boat took us to San Pedro where we are now. San Pedro is an extreemly relaxing spot to be. Not much going on so far except for enjoying the amazing view of the various volcanos and rugged mountains that surround the lake. The view from our hotel is simply unbelievable. We sit and stare at it for hours as it goes through its changes each day. People come to the lakes edge to swim, play, wash clothes, take baths and fish. Swimming in the lake is nice and very refreshing. We may do a sunrise hike, and we may even rent a kayak, But for the last few days we have been like Iguanas, basking in the sun enjoying one of the best views in the world.





We will rest in San Pedro and eventually move on. Time to cross a border and head into Honduras....

3 Comments:

At 6:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jordan & Amie,

I'm so excited to be able to check out your honeymoon adventure! I'm glad that you guys are traveling safe and having a good time. Sorry, Willie and I didn't get to really spend any time together before you left but I'm glad that we can at least catch up with you this way!!

Happy Travels,
Vanavia

 
At 12:40 PM, Blogger - Jordan & Amie said...

Sounds great! Nice to hear from you an I am glad you are enjoying our trip from afar. We will be back in November and we hope to see you then!

Jordan

 
At 10:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please send more updates. I love the places you have chosen. When I visited the Caribbean island of San Andres, Colombia in the 70s, I met wonderful people from Bluefields. I have never been to Guatemala, but my cousin will be visiting next mes. Hasta luego. Wuanda

 

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