Ahhhh Antigua! Possibly (most likely), our favorite city in all of Guatemala. There is so much to see and do here. Countless restaurants, coffee farms, historic churches, and buildings, entertainment, and cobblestone streets! This is a place you could move to or visit, experience history, modern amenities, and everything in between. We have been here 5 or 6 times, and each time is more fun than the last. We find something new each time.
This time, we enjoyed a van ride straight up the side of a volcano to visit a restaurant, called Cerro San Cristobol. The views of Antigua were amazing! Breakfast with a volcano in the back ground, the city in the foreground, and fresh mountain air! What more could you ask for?
We visited the market several times. This place offers fresh locally grown fruits and vegetables, clothes, tools, souvenirs, artisan crafts, and so much more!
The people watching is second to none. The arch is always a fun spot to see. It spans the street just blocks from centro, where it previously allowed the nuns to cross the street without being seen by the public. It is probably the most photographed location in Antigua.
There are numerous historic churches, both active, and some in ruins condition. They all make for a spectacular stroll through the city to look at them all.
We didn’t make it up there this trip, but worth mentioning is the huge cross that towers above the city, with amazing birds eye views of the city.
We always enjoy the tuk tuks, three wheeled motorcycle type taxis. These are great, because driving scooters or vehicles on the cobblestone streets offer bone jarring experiences, though that is a large part of the charm and character of this city. We found a new restaurant (which there are numerous), that offered a roof top terrace to enjoy dinner while viewing the volcano’s and sunset. Indescribably beautiful!
If you find yourself in Guatemala or looking for a great place to visit, do yourself a favor and get to Antigua! At 5000 feet Above sea level, the temps are comfortably around 75 in the day, and 50 at night. If you are lucky, and your chances are pretty good, you just might see a puff of volcanic smoke, or even lava ooze over the side of the volcano. We got our chance.
The local tourist police compound in downtown Antigua, is a city block walled compound, that they offer to travelers, like ourselves, to camp for free! Its a great service, that we have utilized each time we are here. One evening just after dark, our camper began to rock back and forth. We could not figure out who would be playing around outside for more than 30 seconds, rocking our camper. I went out to look, and Adam was poking his head out of his camper. We soon realized, it was a earthquake, 5.6 to be exact. As we looked out and around, we looked up to the volcano to see flaming red lave burst out of the top, and ooze over the side. It was surreal! Two natural phenomenons experienced within minutes of each other! Yep, we love Antigua!