march trip to antigua & lago atitian- some questions

Old Nov 10th, 2007, 07:29 PM
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march trip to antigua & lago atitian- some questions

besides these 2 locations, are there any suggestions for a third (with easy access)? we enjoy pretty towns and scenic areas.
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Old Nov 10th, 2007, 09:10 PM
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We haven't been to Guatemala yet - we're going at the end of this month. We're planning to spend a night in Chichicastenango (the night before the market), but you could do that as a day trip from Lake Atitlan. We're also going to Tikal for 2 days / 1 night.
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Old Nov 11th, 2007, 07:26 AM
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How long are you going to be going for?

Tikal is a must if you have time.

We stayed in a hotel on Lago Atitlan and just headed out from there on day trips. We didn't get to Chichi but did get up to the market in Solola. They are different days. We had fun boating around the lake and visiting the different villages. The first time we went it was right after Stan so things were a mess. We saw a huge improvement when we went back the last year.

Do be sure to go to Santiago de Atitlan and visit the church, visit Maximon (do a wiki search, very interesting), and go shopping on the main drag. You can get some good quality stuff for a good price. Have fun bargaining. Solola is not as big as Chichi but was plenty for us. It is more of a huge local market. We (4 of us) were the only tourists there. We bought a lot of weavings there.

There is a small nature reserve in Panajachel. We enjoy just going into town and sitting around. Lots of shops there. A little more expensive.

One of our favorite restaurants in Antigua is NiFu NiFa. It is an Argentine restaurant with incredible steaks and the garden setting is beautiful. We have even been to their restaurant in Escazu in Costa Rica. The setting isn't as beautiful but the food was just as good.

El Sereno in Antigua is a little pricey but the food is good and the views from the roof top garden area are awesome. Try to go to catch the sunset. There is a bar up there if you just want to stop for a drink. They even have a "cave" seating area with hundreds of candles. It is a private area with only one table.

A couple of good day trips from Antigua would be Pacaya Volcano. A really live volcano that you can hike on. Hopefulist was a lot braver than we were and got higher.

AzoteA coffee plantation has a really nice presentation. A taxi there and back is pretty inexpensive. We just had the taxi wait. We just wandered into town and go a taxi on the main square.

On the central park in Antigua there is a little row of shops. In the middle there is a bookstore. If you go in there and then wander out through the back door you will have a wonderful surprise. There is a darling garden/fountain area with more shops and a great little cafe. I had some wonderful soup and my husband had delicious coffee. Antigua is full of these beautiful little hidden gardens.

If you like Mexican food I highly recommend a stop in Frida's in Antigua. There is a huge shopping market next door as well.

Have fun SusaninToronto. We went back a second year because it was so beautiful and we are looking forward to another trip.
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Old Nov 11th, 2007, 12:25 PM
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Thanks Suzie2. We're really looking forward to the trip!
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Old Nov 11th, 2007, 01:29 PM
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My photos are here including a recent trip that included Antigua, Chichi, Atitlán, and Tikal (and Rio Dulce and Nebaj).

http://www.flickr.com/photos/staceyholeman/collections/
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