Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Long and Winding Road - Antigua to Lanquin

After the volcano trek we showered at the hostel (cold showers, I might add - not exactly what I was hoping for after working up a sweat and then cooling off in the chilly mountain air), walked to the square and found a bite to eat. Went back to the hostel, crawled into bed and woke up the next morning ready to make our way to Lanquin.

Our first foray into what would be a few separate days of travel throughout Central America, we climbed aboard the 15 person passenger van and made ourselves comfortable. The back seat was already taken by two couples from the UK that were heading in the same direction as we were. They asked where we were staying and we told them that we were staying at El Retiro, one of the hostels that had been recommended to us by the folks at Bamba.

We drove through a rainbow

down the hill into Lanquin
The drive wasn't all that exciting. About 8 hours all together we made a few stops along the way for food and washroom breaks. The last hour of the trip was the most confusing - we turned off a paved road to venture down a long bumpy dirt road.

The grounds at El Retiro
Lanquin is a small town. There are only about 4 hostels, not really any hotels to speak of, and not too much to do. More than anything, it is used as a starting point to Semuc Champey, a natural "monument" consisting of limestone pools along the river that are crystal clear as well as a nearby cave system and spots where you can tube down the river.

We were happy to have made our reservations at the lodge before leaving as we found out that everything in town was booked up otherwise. The resort was gorgeous - small cabins that had 2 main floor rooms and 2 loft rooms above. We opted for the lofts, since they were less expensive. A super simple room with just a bed and a light, with the thatched roof above us. No door to speak of, the entrance was closed off by essentially a towel.

The grounds were gorgeous. Nestled along the river, there was a large bar/restaurant that did a huge buffet dinner every night for 50Q (about $6.50). Meg and I both signed up and couldn't wait for dinner. We each had a shower and headed down to hang out on the hammocks that were hanging for all to use.

As should be obvious from all my travels, when one of the hostel workers showed up with a puppy, I was immediately in love. We played with the dog while waiting for dinner to be served.

Once it got dark and we were full of food, we headed to bed - the next morning we were off to Semuc Champey as well as the Lanquin Caves. 

1 comment:

  1. A perfect place for vacation with family and friends especially this coming holiday season, Christmas!

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