Guatemala is such a beautiful country with warm and friendly people that I can’t imagine anyone not wanting to spend some time in the country. Education And More works in the western highlands which are particularly beautiful because of the lush volcanic mountains and the fantastic Lake Atitlan which is one of the most beautiful lakes in the world.
The western highlands around Lake Atitlan at times seems like a step back in time. Many of the Mayans still wear their stunningly beautiful typical clothing in rich colors and patterns.
There are charming local hotels to stay in and the restaurants serve delicious foods of the local cuisine or at the larger cities such as Antigua or Panajachel you can choose what type of cuisine you are hungry for: Chinese, Italian, Indian, Thai, and more. My favorite restaurants are:
- Las Palmas in Antigua
- Restaurante Fonda de Calle Real, Antigua
- Bombay Cafe, Panajachel
- Sunset Cafe, Panajachel
- Deli Restaurant, Panajachel
- The Rostro Maya, San Juan La Laguna
Hotels that I particularly like are:
- Hotel Chi-Ya between San Pedro and San Juan la Laguna
- Hotel Regis – Panajachel
- Posada La Merced – Antigua
- Casa Cristina – Antigua
- La Aurora – Antigua
- Mario’s Rooms – Panjachel (if you are on a budget this is a great hotel)
You’ll see the unusual as well as quaint sights– a man walking a herd of goats and stopping at houses to see if they want to buy fresh goat milk and he proceeds to milk a goat if they want to buy some;
hear the slap slap of hands making tortillas; women still weaving cloth on the centuries old type of loom known as a backstrap loom; the colorful local markets with everything you can imagine to buy; the inter-country bus known as the ‘chicken bus’ which are actually brightly painted old school buses from the States.
This can be a time to really experience a culture, to get out and explore with relative ease. Sure you should take precautions just as you would in a large city in the States but the people are warm and friendly and many speak a little English, especially in the hotels and restaurants.
You can go any time of the year because the temperatures are similar throughout the year in the western highlands. Spanish schools abound if you want to do a little learning.
Enjoy your vacation or come with us on a tour to meet Fair Trade artisans and learn a little backstrap weaving.