Monday, January 31, 2011

Tenting Guatemala style! not really

Guatemalan traffic to Lanquin

Lanquin is a tinny village in the centre of Guatemala its a nice place to spend a few day or even a week just relaxing and taking part in the many activities of the area. We spent 4 days here tenting and got the VIP site as you can in the picture. Actually we were the only ones camping the other one arrived on our last night lucky them. The place is El Retiro a popular backing packers destination, that had it all from Restaurant bar, Wifi, a river and even a sauna. All this for $5 usd a nite.

our vip site with a roof

Second day we took a 45min tubing ride on the river was relaxing but not for Jieun, she keep getting stuck in the trees. On the 3rd day we took a tour to Semuc Champey to see the famous natural lime stone pools of emerald green waters. The road itself was super steep and rocky lucky we took a tour in 4x4 because our sienna would not have made it. When we reached the park they they gave us a cave tour with candle light that was fun and a little scary. After we hiked up to the look out point over looking Semuc Champey we descended to the bottom to swim in the emerald cool water pools the high light of the tour.

the long steep hike up
the view worth it

Next we are heading to Guatemala city to stay with friends we meet in Oaxaca!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Deep in the jungle of Palenque Mexico and crossed in to Guatemala

Been busy the last 2 weeks we spent a few nights deep in the jungle of southern Mexico in Palenque to see the ruins and camped in a real hippie area. The nights were full of music and insects and the mornings had monkeys roaring, birds chirping and more insects.

After we set out to the board crossing town of Ceibo, about 2 hours from Palenque. The crossing was pretty easy not busy at all. We change some pesos to quetzals got the visas, after did the van paper work drove in and had 2 guys spray down the tires. total cost $12 usd. Was pain free and very fast not at all of what we expected.

our hostel in Flores
bump into some people we met in Oaxaca
lake side sun set in Flores

Our first stop in Guatemala was Flores and we bumped into some travels that we meet in Oaxaca, small world. We went to see the ruins of Tikal and we found a real nice spot on the lake called El Remante and camped right on the lake with a tiny family run hostel that let us camp for $4 usd a night.

highest pyramid in Tikal
on top what view
camp out at this place on the lake for 5 usd a night
view of the lake

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

In the middle of the jungle with witch doctors

We made it to Catemaco, a small town on a lagoon. The town is famous for its brujos, male witch doctors. We spent 2 nights camping on the lagoon and one night in the jungle at the Nanciyaga that hosted likes of Mal Gibson, Sean Connery and numerous Mexico celebrities it has a famous mud bath and mineral water pool. The town is full of hungry police that stop us twice with the second time trying to get money from us for not having plates on the front but we got off with just a warning.

the jungle road to Nanciyaga
this little paradise Poza reyna out in mountains road was even worst
me and Julio enjoying a dip in the falls
view from our cabin alligators swimming by and wild monkeys in the background

our tinny cabin
sun rise in Catemaco
Luisa and me getting a facial with natural mud from the area
mineral water pool runs down from the nearby mountains
sad monkeys stuck on the tinny monkey island in Catemaco lagoon

we are leaving Catemaco tomorrow for Palenque.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Back on the road to Veracruz

Just left Oaxaca and wired stuff has been happening ABS and TPMS lights have been on and off all day gotta get this checked soon.

tinny church
tinny village that used the cute church

Back on the road again we drove north east to Veracruz through some amazing scenery, from mountain views to jungle and to dry hot beaches Mexico, really has it all. We drove on some very hilly and curvy road making a stop in Iztlan de Juarez, the town where Benito Juarez was baptized. Juarez was the first full blooded indigenous president of Mexico. 5 hours later we finally reached the tinny town of San Mateo Yetla, that has a lovely ecotourism resort and spent the night van camping on the grounds very quite and relaxing. Interesting about the resort is that its owned by the community and all the employees are from the village the money made goes to them so its worth checking out.

luxury cabins on a ecotourism resort?
kids playing and clean their clothes in the river along the resort
community pool in the resort

Next morning we drove another 4 hours to Veracruz, a very modern port city for Mexico we think the feeling is so different like a Caribbean meets colonel much like New Orleans but not as developed. We enjoyed our 2 days here but its time to move on south.

Veracruz is warming up for the big carnival in March
too late to see what the caught

Enrique mucho gracias por cena y todos
Veracruz port
traditional Veracruz rice plate with fish, crab and shrimps
Veracruz downtown at night

Next stop Catemaco for some mexican witchcraft hope they can fix my ABS and tire pressure light problem.