Notices

Lost in Antigua Guatemala

Reply

Nov 26th, 2011, 05:40 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 19
Lost in Antigua Guatemala

Lost in Antigua
Getting lost in Antigua Guatemala is a tried and true tourist tradition. No matter how much you study the map, you are bound to lose your way here. This is not a problem unless you are a complete control freak and always operate as if you are on your way to a job interview. Get over yourself and just drop the expectation that you are easily going to get from A to B, and instead, enjoy a winding path to wherever it is you’re going. Yolkobsens have tried getting into a cab to avoid this issue, but found even some taxi drivers can be stymied by the city‘s layout. To their credit, most of them are pretty good about turning off the meter when this happens.
First thing to know is that the city is designed on a grids so it’s not like the streets curve to dead ends or jog over one road as is the case in many European cities and even some North American ones. So, the basic principle to grasp is that the “avenidas” (avenues) run north and south and the calles (streets) run east and west. If you lose your orientation, always bear in mind that “El Cerro de la Cruz,” Hill of the Cross is north and can be seen from many parts of the city.
Most tourist maps are of limited help because once you leave the avenidas and calles immediately surrounding the Central Park (Parque Central) there are no consistently reliable signs indicating what street you are on or whether you are now on the eastern or western end of the calles or in the southern or northern direction of the avenidas. Instead, you will find all the old names of the streets, which bear no resemblance to the names on your modern map.
The people of Antigua are very good about trying to help you find your destination.
“?Donde esta Iglesia del Carmen?” ”Where is the El Carmen Church?” It’s located on the 3rd avenida North, between the 2nd and 3rd calles. Though friendly, the locals will send you in the general direction of the sight you seek, but have long learned that a lengthy set of verbal directions to gringos doesn’t work. They know, as you will learn, that the best thing to do is ask the general direction and then ask another person and then another person until you arrive. This is a very pleasant way to spend the day as locals will likely ask you where you’re from and how you are enjoying Antigua Guatemala. Try that in Paris, mi amigos, and see how much conversation you get or how much closer you get to your destination.
But modern technology has found a way for you to avoid at least some of the pitfalls of navigating this 16th century town. Enter good old Google Maps. If you have access through your laptop or can find an Internet cafe (there are plenty in Antigua Guatemala) just do what you do at home. Yolkobsens have found this method to be about 80 percent correct, and often find that we still need to get into the “Donde” or where-is-it mode with Antiguans.
In Antigua Guatemala, technology will only take you so far when orienteering so this method is the best of both worlds. Click first and then talk and interact with real folks for directions. Pretty good. Either way, don’t be in a hurry. ”Tranquilo” is the byword of Antigua Guatemala.
AntiguaGuatemala is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 27th, 2011, 08:29 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,032
I agree with the lack of obvious signage but otherwise Antigua is pretty simple to navigate. But my main question is who/what are Yolkobsens?
NoFlyZone is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 27th, 2011, 11:59 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,136
We once spent about half an hour driving around the city of Cartago in CR looking for the police station - which, in the end, was probably 6 blocks from the first place we asked directions. . . "go two blocks and turn right at the white church. . " followed by the next person's directions, and then the next. . . .
glover is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 29th, 2011, 07:42 AM
  #4
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 19
Oh the Yolkobsens. That question well you see over the years we have blogged, used social media and as of late moved onto our travel life. Well if you google us you will see.
Thanks for the post comment
AntiguaGuatemala is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 09:49 AM.