Exploring Guatemala

  1. To no surprise, from looking at my IG in the month of September you can see that I traveled to Guatemala. Guatemala truly caught me by surprise. Its endless views, rich culture, home to kindest people, charming colonials and never ending places to explore. Guatemala is an adventure that no one should overlook! So,  I want to share with you top places to visit/do in Guatemala.

(In no particular order)

  1. Zipline Pino Dulce in Jalapa

Pino Dulce is full of activities for the whole family to enjoy. This National Forrest offers many activities but apart from the stationary hammocks they also have a restaurant on site and cabins for rental. The perfect destination for a weekend getaway also if you are trying to get away from the heat this is the place to go! Its chilly weather makes it 10x more relaxing.

  1. Visit the Basilica of Esquipulas

We had to do quick religious visit to the Lord of Esquipulas best known as Cristo Negro. One of the most visited Basilicas of Central America for its 400 years of commemorating of faith, venerations, and blessings.

And cannot leave until you shop at Plaza Santa Fe, located next to the Basilica. You will find all kinds of souvenirs, native clothing, textiles, street vendors and more.                       

  1. Tour Lake Atitlan  

Lake Atlitan is one of the most beautiful lakes in the world surrounded by 3 active Volcanos. If this list was in order this one here would be my #1 place to visit! This is not a quick stop to visit. Atlitan is a whole adventure that by sunset you will fall in love, a whole world in one place.

You can view the lake from many villages the most popular ones being Panajachel, San Pedro, San Marcos, and Santiago are the most popular ones. Each of those villages offers different charms and amenities.  

Panajachel: the biggest village and where you will find the most tourist staying.

San Pedro: the Nightlife village with breathtaking views.

San Juan: the Spiritual village, this is where you will find locals selling their art, tapestries, jewelry, clothing and much more.

Santiago: the overpopulated village, but did you know that you can meet Conception Ramirez Mendoza face of the 25 cents coin from Guatemala!         

  1. Quetzaltenango Carbs

Can you believe we traveled to Xela just to get our carbs on with Shecas, a delicious bread made in Quetzaltenango based of anis, also filled with jam, chocolate (my favorite) and more.

  1. Experience Antigua

Antigua is a small Spanish colonial city surrounded by volcanoes and well known for its architecture. You can hike up to the “Cerro de la Cruz” and enjoy the view of the city, shop in the Artisans Market, walk the famous street “Calle del Arco de Santa Catalina” and take a pic with the Arch, walk around the plaza at night, visit the ruins, visit the Convento de las Capuchinas, get your hair braided. You will not run out of things to do.

  1. Visit the City of Guatemala

Visit zone 1 of Guatemala, the historic “Zona”. After chasing off the birds in La Plaza de la Constitución you could enjoy a good walk down 6th ave. detour back to the 3 stories Mercado “Farmers Market” where you will find fresh fruit and vegetables, restaurants with authentic cuisines and of course hundreds artisans booths. On your way out you can visit the Metropolitan Cathedral and National Palace.

Also, don’t miss to visit Cayala, Cayala is a modern district with Greek influence architecture buildings. Perfect for a safe night out for drinks! 

  1. Visit the Kids of Fatima

Visit Hogar de Niños Fatima in zone 15, home of protection for children victims of violence and abandonment. Call ahead of time to get a window time to visit, leave donations and play with the children. The staff is more than happy to receive visitors.

Even though this was not a mission trip, I like to leave my small grain of love. I hope that that’s what I delivered to the people of Guatemala. I know that I saw God smiling at me through the children of Fatima, street vendors, Abner’s family, the tourist guides and nature. 

Jenyfer

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