Antigua proved to be a much more interesting city than Xela. It’s main highlight for me at least, was similar to that of Lago Atitlán, volcanoes. There’s something about having volcanoes looming over that makes a place look amazing. The main downside from our stay was how all the tourist sites wanted to charge us money to go in, including the cathedral. That’s not something specific to Antigua, but our Mexican student IDs, which worked wonderfully to go into nearly all the museums
I had planned in a rest day by Lago Atitlán so we had a lazy morning riding along to San Pedro. It wasn’t too hilly, so we could have done it the night before, but then we’d have missed the beautiful views of the lake in the early morning. In San Pablo, where we had stayed, we were the only non-locals, but that changed so quickly going round the corner of the lake. Pedro stopped for a haircut, and while I was sat outside, it seemed like half the people who walked past were tourists
I’d heard lots of good things about Xela before getting to Guatemala, but wasn’t that impressed. It’s apparently a really nice place to study Spanish, but the centre seemed so small without much to do and even our lovely hosts didn’t make up for it.
After the previous few days of steep long climbs, the climb out of Xela hardly felt like we were doing anything. It was a well graded road which almost seemed flat as we climbed for a couple of hours being passed by a few road
We had hoped to start early knowing we had a lot of climbing ahead of us, and were putting our bikes outside when Jan and Noemi’s dog ran out after us and started running up the road. We didn’t want to be remembered as the guys who let their dog escape down the busy road so we followed after him. The more we followed, the further away he ran. If I crossed the road, he crossed the road. We followed for about 15-20 minutes before I eventually caught him, and then Peter carried him back
What we had thought would just be meeting up for a coffee ended up turning into two nights in a resort, and they actually suggested we stay for their 3rd and final night too, but we had to keep going. Part of it was because Pedro had burnt himself to a crisp the day before forgetting his suntan lotion, and even though that combined with eating copious amounts of steak the night before meant he was feeling off, we left. We had said our goodbyes to Eduardo’s family the night before, and said