Mom and Dad Visit Guatemala

Trip Start Mar 14, 2004
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Guatemala  , Western Highlands,
Thursday, October 14, 2010

Finally, after six and half years of traveling, my Mom and Dad decided to come visit me somewhere amazing and see what this nomadic lifestyle is all about.   Their arrival to Guatemala was timed perfectly as the hurricane season had just subsided and the weather was about perfect.  In addition, Antigua was where they officially celebrated their 43rd wedding anniversary. 

The two week trip took us to the town of Panajachel which sits on the volcano ringed Lake Atitlan.  Apart from the natural beauty of this area, the highlight was zip-lining through the jungle.  The Sunday market of nearby Chichicastenango gave an up-close look at the local Mayan population and you can't eat a better steak in the northern hemisphere than at Guajimbo's Uruguayan restaurant. 
The next stop was Rio Dulce, a riverside village with an unruly atmosphere that marks the start of the "Sweet River" that connects Guatemala's unknown piece of Caribbean coast to an inland freshwater lake.   The scenery is stunning and included a visit to Ak-Tenemit, a school for underprivileged Mayan children.  Finca Paraiso, a natural hot spring waterfall and Castillo San Felipe, an old Spanish fort, made for a pleasant afternoon of exploring. 
Continuing north on a "first class" bus (yeah right!) brought us to the picturesque village of Flores, the touristic launch pad to Tikal National Park and the superb ancient Mayan city of the same name.
After a quick flight back to Antigua, they enjoyed the Filadelphia Coffee plantation tour and a final dinner where we met Ignacio Borrel, one of the former members of Cuba's Buena Vista Social Club.  A video recording of his music is at the very end of the photos and worth a listen if you enjoy Latin music.  AWESOME.

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