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ttraveler Nov 10th, 2008 05:26 PM

chichiastenango
 
We will be staying one night in Chichi so we can experience the market. Any suggestion for a good hotel. Thanks

hopefulist Nov 10th, 2008 08:06 PM

We stayed at Hotel Girón, $16/double, great location, safe, clean, friendly owners - I'll stay there every trip.

http://flickr.com/photos/staceyholem...7602144236412/

http://flickr.com/photos/staceyholem...7602144236412/

ttraveler Nov 10th, 2008 10:57 PM

Hopeful,
Do you remember how you contacted them? Do they have a website? Thanks

airwayvz Nov 10th, 2008 11:28 PM

If it was me, I'd just stay in Pana and make the drive early in the morning...easier than finding a hotel in Chichi the day before market day. But that's just me!

hopefulist Nov 11th, 2008 05:24 AM

They don't have email access but here's the phone number I used:
011-502-7756-1156. I have in my notes that I was asked to confirm 3 days before and to arrive before 3pm Saturday afternoon. I was there in August 2007 and at the time no one there spoke English, often the case with the locally-owned places I like best.

Here's a website where you can reserve online but it's a middle man site that marks up the price:

http://www.sailing-diving-guatemala....tels/giron.htm

Here's the LP review (came up when I googled to confirm the phone number):

http://hotels.lonelyplanet.com/hotel...000575010.html

It's not a fancy place but the location and value can't be beat in my book.

Staying in Chichi worked out well for us last trip, breaking up the long journey between Antigua and Nebaj. We spent much of the evening watching the gorgeous produce market in the commercial building as well as the market set up in the plaza (you can use the links above and scroll through my other Chichi photos). Sunday morning we spent a little time in and around the churches, hardly seeing other visitors, then headed north around 9am with our hearts and brains saturated.

SusanInToronto Nov 11th, 2008 05:33 AM

We went to Chichi the night before the market. I'm not sure how whether I'd do it again. On one hand, it was fun to see the setup and there was a fair amount of activity around the church (people burning incense, etc.) and that was interesting to watch. But we stayed in a hotel right next to the market and it was very basic. It was honestly colder inside the hotel than it was outside the hotel, and it was cold outside that evening. Plus I was not feeling so good - the trip from Antigua had not been kind to my stomach.

We had considered Hotel Giron and I wish we had gone with that choice. We walked by there, and it looked quite pleasant, but we were already booked at the other place.

The Santo Tomas is one of the expensive hotels in town - we had lunch there while waiting for our shuttle to Pana. I wouldn't stay there (too expensive for me), but it was nice for lunch.

One thing I wish we had done in Chichi was go through the cemetary - it looked really interesting. But I did hear that it was rather dangerous to walk through it. Maybe if you had a guide?

ttraveler Nov 11th, 2008 04:18 PM

Thanks everyone for your replies. We will be at Lake Atitlan for a few days before we head up to Chichi and will leave there on Thursday on a 2pm shuttle back to Antigua. Is that too much time in Chichi? I also want to visit the cemetery and have also heard that you should hire a guide. I would consider Hotel Giron but will have to book through a site. My spanish isn't good enough for me to call and book the room.. and I don't want to have to try to call and confirm once I am in Guatemala.We are only in Guatemala seven nights and I am having such a hard time narrowing down where to go and what to do.. there is just so much! Any suggestions would be welcome.

hopefulist Nov 11th, 2008 05:45 PM

If you're spending the night you might find that you're ready to leave before 2 pm, especially on Thursday when there will be less going on at the churches and especially if you're early risers. Truly, we were happy to head out at 9am, though it wasn't my 1st visit there.

I don't really love shopping there and the market really feels crazy once the tourist vans from Panajachel and Antigua arrive. I did purchase some yardage from a dear little woman because I enjoyed my conversation with her so much, but overall I found the shopping in Pana more pleasant and the prices better.

If you find that the only easy shuttle is at that time, just spend the time people watching at the produce market - one of the highlights of my 2007 trip. Keep us posted!

ttraveler Nov 12th, 2008 02:27 AM

Hopeful,
I really value your input since you have visited Guatemala so many times. Would you even recommend going to Chichi? If so should we arrive earlier in the day on Wed. and then plan on leaving earlier. We really aren't big shoppers just want to see the market. Are the shuttles back to Antigua easy to find/book? Thanks

hopefulist Nov 12th, 2008 05:46 AM

I think for most people arriving mid afternoon and leaving by 9 or 10am is sufficient time. I took colectivos onward and was heading north so I'm not sure how the shuttles work. You could try contacting the Rainbow Agency in Antigua to see what's available. The people watching in the indoor produce market is extraordinary, so no worries if you have extra time (though I'm not sure how different that might be on Wed/Thur). Here's a link, they have lots of bilingual agents and usually respond quickly to emails: http://www.rainbowtravelcenter.com/
Happy trails!

SusanInToronto Nov 12th, 2008 06:55 AM

We arrived the night before and took the 2 PM shuttle. But we did have some time on our hands and ended up having a nice lunch at the Santo Tomas. There was also another restaurant closer to the market that looked quite nice for lunch.

Hopefulist is right - there was great people watching in the indoor market. We were there for the Thursday market, and it was still fairly lively.

ttraveler Nov 12th, 2008 04:37 PM

Thank you both for your help. I think I will try to head up mid day on Wed. and then leave early on Thursday. I am sure we will be up early.. that way we may get back to Antigua in time for an afternoon city tour.I am still working on booking my hotels. I had wanted to stay at Casa Cristina but she was already booked. I am trying for our last two nights but I haven't heard back from her yet.

hopefulist Nov 12th, 2008 05:18 PM

When are you going, you lucky duck?

ttraveler Nov 13th, 2008 01:40 AM

We are leavig January 31st. It's really coming up quickly especially with the holidays. I really can't wait. I have been dreaming about Guatemala for years, ever since I saw Antigua mentioned in the New York Times travel magazine which was probably almost ten years ago. I already know that I am not going to have time for everything that I want to do but will try to fit in as much as I can. I had wanted to stay at Casa Cristina when we arrived but she was booked. I am hoping for our last two nights but I am still waiting to hear from her.


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