Friday, March 14, 2014
Antigua Guatemala, Western Highlands, Guatemala
Arrived in Guatemala after about a 4 hour 30 minute flight. I was able to get some sleep, however I got woken every hour or so with staff coming past asking if I would like something to drink or if I wanted breakfast. I'm actually quiet happy they woke my for breakfast, it was pancakes and peach flavored yogurt, so yum.
I was picked up from the airport and traveled over an hour to Antigua where I'll spend the first couple of days. It's a little uncomfortable at the moment, no one here at the hotel seems to speak English, and the little Spanish I know hasn't helped apart from me being able to tell them I don't understand. Hand gestures go a long way luckily, so they are able to get me to follow them or point me in the right direction.
I also have no idea yet what the average tip here is, and I don't want anyone to feel like I am under tipping them. I'm still exhausted and feel like I need to sleep, however I also don't want to miss out on the day here to take a chance to look around, get some photos.
Antigua is the old capital of Guatemala and was once the most important city in all of Central America as it was once the seat of the Spanish colonial government.
The roads in Antigua are just rocks, I'm not 100% sure if cobblestone is the right word, but it certainly is bumpy. The driver who drive me to the hotel advised me they will never change the roads here, I thought that was a bit strange, however I've since found out that Antigua has been designated as a World Heritage Site, which could explain it.
I've ended up getting a couple of hours more sleep, still feeling tired, but if I don't get out and about now (12:30pm) I would essentially waste a full day.
I ended up going for a walk around the town for a couple of hours, there is some interesting stuff about the places, unfortunately hardly any of it is labelled in English (no surprise there, I am in a Spanish speaking country after all) so I can't tell what it is.
I walked into a Jade Museum while I was out and about, it essentially a jewelry making place with a shop, they even take you into their factory. There was some really cool stuff and rather cheap as well. I didn't end up buying anything as I'm going to struggle as it is with everything I have. Way too many clothes, I wanted to send some stuff back to NZ but LAX doesn't even have a post office in the entire airport. Anyhow, sidetracked a little there... As I walked out of the Jade museum I saw this guy standing by the entrance with a shotgun in his hand, I decided I best not try and get a photo of him, you never know what might happen.
Finally meet up with everyone at 6pm this evening to introduce ourselves to each other, most of them were all on a previous trip so already knew each other, they loose 4 people tomorrow, however gain 6 of us to join their trip.
They all seem like a great bunch of people, we all went out for dinner and started bonding, by the end of the night we were all laughing with each other and taking the piss out of one another. Food and drinks were cheap too, my meal worked out at about 120 in there dollars, which I think works out at about $8.20, that's a BBQ chicken meal as well as two alcoholic drinks.
My room mate is a guy by the name of Dan, he's an Aussie who has quit his job to travel for 2 years... Not only does he have the same type of power plugs and has brought a power board with him like I had planned, he also use to work in IT, so needless to say, we have a lot to talk about.
What's even funnier, it appears that he has to watch TV to go to sleep too, right now he is on his iPad with his headphones, which is what I'm going to do very shortly. Wifi isn't as popular here so I'm not sure when I'll get to update next, I'll probably get another one or two updates in before I'm offline for a couple of days.