Category Archives: Guatemala

Antigua de Guatemala – A colonial gem in the heart of Guatemala

There is a bad reputation in Guatemala for bandits and robberies, it is not unfounded and recent attacks have left many travellers in the know quite cautious about how they move around the country. Others, who don’t read the blogs and foreign office advice, just happily get on with it. I try to inhabit the middle ground and be aware but not paranoid in country of wonderful friendly people and a wealth of beauty to be seen.

volcanoes dominate the city

One of the main tourist routes through Guatemala is the road from Flores in Peten to Guatemala City itself, this involves a nine hour ride however you do it and if you do not want to arrive in supposedly the most dangerous city in Central America after dark you have to take a night bus.

I thought I had chosen the most expensive bus to ensure a better chance of sleep while travelling but my good plans nearly came awry when I was told my ticket was for a less prestigious ride. My luck held though and the conductor hustled me onto the bus anyway for a long night of tossing and turning, mysterious stops in the night and a bleary eyed welcome to the worst parts of Guatemala City at six in the morning!
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Discovering the Ancient Ruins of Tikal, Guatemala

It’s a jungle out there

For the adventurous traveller nothing is more exciting than hacking through the jungle in the early morning mist to discover a lost empire with towering pyramids and ancient city streets. Like Indiana Jones you swashbuckle your way through crocodile infested swamps, past crazed howler monkeys to find yourself at the lost tomb of the tribal chieftain.

At least that was the scenario going through my mind as our party entered the national park in Peten, Guatemala on our way to Tikal, the most important city of the Mayan civilization. Once a bandit ridden and dangerous area regular police and army patrols have made this destination much safer for tourists however some caution should still be exercised.

There are two main ways to get to the region, either from the Guatemala City in the south or across from Belize which is how I came in. My journey had started in the town of San Pedro on Ambergris Caye, a small island off the coast of Belize. I took the 7am water taxi to the marine terminal in Belize City where there was a connecting bus that would take me all the way to Flores in Guatemala.

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