Lives in Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Since Apr 2013
18-24 year old female
I have spent the last few months travelling through Cuba and Central America. I have recently written a few short TripAdviser guides which focus upon Havana and Antigua; two beautiful and exciting locations. I am also extremely passionate about South Africa and try to visit as often as possible. I love marathon running, yoga, healthy eating, eco friendly fashion and dreaming about my next trip. I am currently planning a trip to the West Coast of the United States.
Points of Interest & Landmarks
Flea & Street Markets
Cultural Tours, Historical & Heritage Tours, Coffee & Tea Tours, Sightseeing Tours, Archaeology Tours
Private Tours, Zipline & Aerial Adventure Parks, Bike Tours, Kayaking & Canoeing, Surfing, Windsurfing & Kitesurfing
Yoga & Pilates
Volcanoes, Bodies of Water
Cerro de la Cruz overlooks Antigua and provides stunning views of the city and the surrounding volcanoes. It is a 30-minute walk from the center of Antigua but you are more than rewarded for your efforts upon arrival. And if you are lucky you may even see Volcano Fuego erupting!
The street market in Antigua is a mass of color and people. Head here for a true taste of Guatemala; sample the street food, admire the handicrafts, and explore the maze of stalls. The fruit and vegetable stalls are beautiful riots of color that make for excellent photographs. The chaos of the market is somewhat juxtaposed with the sanitized beauty of Antigua and that is exactly why it is worth a visit. Watch local life unfold as you take a break from sightseeing.
Ninos de Guatemala offer tours that strive to demonstrate to visitors both the beauty and the challenging realities of life in Guatemala. Ninos de Guatemala fund local schools in a bid to help break the cycle of poverty, which many are trapped by. The tours are both a humbling and an enlightening experience; from visiting a chicken bus refurbishing workshop to visiting a local school, the tours will certainly lead you off the beaten track and provide you with a different perspective of life in Guatemala.
For those wanting to escape the tourist crowds in Antigua; Earthlodge is the perfect retreat. Located on the mountainside above Antigua, Earthlodge offers stunning views of both Volcano Fuego and Volcano Agua, and its restaurant - with both indoor and outdoor chillout areas — is pleasantly quiet during the week. Earthlodge is both an eco-hotel and a functioning avocado farm; the tree house cabins and any of its delicious home-cooked meals are not to be missed! Enjoy hiking the surrounding trails, lounging in a hammock with a book and a fresh smoothie, and — if you're lucky — watching Volcano Fuego erupt!
O.X. Expeditions offer a wide variety of outdoor excursions: Make the most of the fantastic scenery surrounding Antigua by engaging in one of their many activities. From volcano hiking and mountain biking, to paragliding, zip line tours, and paragliding, O.X. Expeditions caters to both adrenaline junkies and those simply searching for a unique experience off the tourist trail. The guides are both knowledgeable and experienced and the vast array of excursions they offer are perfect for anyone looking to do something a little bit different whilst visiting Antigua.
Hiking up Acatenango Volcano is a fantastic way to get off the beaten track and to experience the fantastic nature surrounding Antigua. But be prepared for a challenging climb and being completely filthy by the time you complete it! Beside the Acatenango Volcano lies Volcano Fuego (the most consistently erupting volcano in the world), where at night it's possible to see the glow of lava when it erupts. Acatenango is the tallest of the volcanoes ringing Antigua and on clear days provides spectacular panoramic views.
Head to Pacaya National Park to climb this active volcano, complete with visible lava pockets! From the summit there are impressive views of the surrounding volcanoes; the Agua, the Fuego, and the Acatenango. Climbing the volcano is an opportunity to experience lava and volcanic activity at extremely close quarters; you can even use the heat of the lava to toast marshmallows!
For those searching for a bit of respite from a busy few days of sightseeing; head to YogAntigua to relax and rejuvenate in a beautiful setting. YogAntigua is also a great place to stretch out sore muscles after completing one of the challenging Volcano hikes. A variety of classes are offered and there are appropriate classes for all levels.
Although this guide is about Antigua, I felt Lake Atitlan deserved a mention as it is an area of immense natural beauty, and is extremely accessible from Antigua. Those wishing to experience all that the Mayan highlands has to offer shouldn't leave without a visit here. The views are exceptional and the street food in the surrounding villages is delicious. San Pedro is the most popular lakeside location, however the stretch closest to the lake is full of tourists so I would advise you to head further up the hill for a more authentic experience (the town becomes progressively more beautiful the further up the hill you go.) For those craving some peace and quiet, take a boat across the water to San Marcos; the prettiest lakeside town.