[12/03/10~15(D+197) Guatemala] It has been my first vacation since I traveled

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There is big mount from Xela to Atitlan Lake, so I take a chicken bus with a bike and it costs 20 Quetzal(USD 2.4$). But I take a wrong bus which just goes near to San Pedro where I want to go because a bus driver lies to me. I have to ride over 15 km (9 mi) and it is very hard but scenery is so nice. It takes me two hours to arrive in San Pedro.

I am going to Atitlan.


Atitlan is so huge and there are many villages. One of them is Panajachel and I heard there is a very tourist place. San Pedro is also one of villages and I heard San Pedro is cheaper and quieter than Panahachel. I find a cheap hotel and it costs 30 Quetzal (USD 3.6 $).


I am not sure that how long I stay, however I buy some food for a few days.


30 Quetzal (USD 3.6$) is just for a day to stay at the hotel. I am wondering that I can find like this hotel again on my way. The special thing is that hotel is in front of Atitlan Lake. A bathroom is at outside but it is no problem. Staffs clean every morning well. I don’t care that they don’t have hot water but I am disappointed that WiFi is so slow and usually WiFi doesn’t work although hotel owner puts WiFi sign on the front. A few times I go to a cafe to post journal and I find that the café has so fast WiFi. San Pedro is no problem to use WiFi but Hotel has problem with WiFi.


Anyway I like this hotel because I can see Atitlan lake closer and I feel more safe because I don’t need to go out to see Atitlan in the night.


I can see local people all day because the hotel is in front of the lake.


In one side she is doing laundry and in another side she is taking shower. Some times old woman don’t wear underwear and they looks that it doesn’t matter. At first time, I was surprised about that, but I am used to see it now.


I was so excited to see Atitlan Lake because it is so famous. But when I saw Atitlan Lake, I realized that it is just one of Lake in Canada. I saw so many lakes like it in Canada when I hitchhiked from the west to the east in 2010. Canada has thousands of lake like this. But there are differences. Canada has thousands lake like this but Guatemala has only one and everything is expensive around Canada Lake but everything is cheap around Atitlan Lake. The most important thing is that I can only see Mayan around Atitlan Lake.


People can move to other villages with a boat. 10 Quetzal (1.2$) is for 10 minute and 30 Quetzal (USD 3.6$) is for 30 minute.


To buy from local people is cheaper. I buy one chicken with bean soup and salsa for 10Quetzal(1.2$)

After I go to a bathroom in the morning, I see this scenery.


I feel so peaceful around Atitlan. I’ve never paid for a place to stay before, so sometimes it was difficult to have my own time. So now I get a vacation from traveling. Yeah!


It’s my first time to pay for a place since I traveled because I don’t have enough money to travel around the world. So I was trying to save money as I can. Now it’s very relax to me. I don’t need care anything.


I’ve not had time to study Spanish since I left Mexico City but I study Spanish again because I have the time now.


I buy dinner on the road and beer. I watch documentary of universe with beer. It’s a perfect vacation! Haha


I can hear English every times because here is a tourist place. But the thing I love San Pedro is that every store except bar run by local people. Sometimes too many tourists make me tired of a beautiful place, but if there are also lots of local people, then it makes me feel better.


There are many activities like riding a horse, kayak, climbing and sun rising tour etc. But it’s cheap that riding a horse is 60 Quetzal (USD7.2$) for two hours and kayak is 10 Quetzal (USD 1.2$) for one hour.


I had fun in Mexico when I rode a horse, so I try to ride a horse again. I think it’s cheap and so much fun with a great view.


It is very exciting than what I expected. I ride a horse with a great view.


There is blue sky. It’s like a scene in the film.


There is Atitlan Lake.


I am with Swedish.


I dream that I live beside the lake and then I can ride a horse sometimes. It’s so sweet. haha


I do recommend to ride a horse if you come to AtitlanLake. It’s cheap and you can ride a horse beside Atitlan Lake.


Everything is so sweet to me in here.


I buy little small paining to send home.


There are a lot of tourists around the hotel I stay but if I go up just for 5minute, and then I can see many local people.


I can see children playing basketball.


I can see a church and a park.


I can see children wearing Mayan traditional clothes.
Essential elements of a woman’s dress are the huipil (blouse), corte (skirt), and faja (belt). The huipil (blouse) is usually hand-woven on a back-strap loom. It is likely to take several months to make with a woman weaving 3 to 4 hours each day among her other tasks. The fabric for the corte (skirt) is generally made by men on a treadle-loom and then pieced together by a woman for her own use. Many of the skirts have ikat patterns woven into the textiles. Other skirts, sometimes called morga, are dark blue, once made from indigo, but now from commercial dyes. The faja (belt or sash) is both decorative and functional, holding up the often tube-shaped skirt. The wider faja also provides additional strength as a woman carries her babies and heavy loads on her back.


The traditional loom is the back-strap loom, a portable loom that a woman can easily move as she conducts her household chores, watches her children or meets with friends at the market. The loom is made of 5 essential sticks with one end fastened to a pole or tree and a woman creates the tension for the loom by the belt or back-strap she wears around her waist. The Europeans brought the treadle or foot- loom to Guatemala in the 15th century and it is usually the men who weave cloth for skirts and export on it.


For Mayan women from the highlands of Guatemala, the Traje (traditional dress) is a statement of her cultural and personal identity. Through her weavings she has an important role in both clothing her family and keeping the threads of the Mayan culture and cosmos together. Each Maya village has its own style of weaving and dress so you can usually tell which village a women is from the style of her traje.


Many Mayan women choose to weave and wear the traditional traje even though it is more expensive than commercially available alternatives. The traje is also more durable, and a woman may wear it for many years, weaving a new one to recognize major life transitions or when resources permit.

(From Google)


It is new to see this kind of store.


There is windy but today is my last day. So I try Kayak for 10Quetzal (1.2$) for one hour. Actually, I don’t know how to swim and even I have a big camera at that time. There is strong windy and I am so scared ever. It’s not lake but ocean.

It’s my first time to take Kayak and I regret it because I am too scared!!! I should learn swim or give up bringing expensive stuff to take Kayak. Anyway, it is a good experience.


I can see many constellations. It’s really long time no see stars. I was nervous to see the night sky in Mexico. Although I can’t take picture all of constellations which I see, I am really happy to see them.

I call them in my mind on the roof of the hotel.

Ursa major, Ursa Minor, Leo, Mars, Gemini, Draco, Heracules, Bootes, Corona Borealis, Virgo, Saturn, Scorpius, Lyra, Canis Minor.


I must have pure soul when I see the night sky.
I have to think what I do want when I see the night sky.
A shooting star is just a moment.
If I think what I don’t want, that can happen because a shooting star sees my mind.

I do want to live like seeing stars.
I do want to live like singing stars.

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1 Comment
  1. Learn to swim! Stop somewhere and take a basic swimming class. It’s easy and once you know how you never have to worry.
    Love your photos. Being in the city too long robs you of the night sky. Seeing the stars connects you with the Universe.
    Have fun, be safe.

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