Friday, November 9, 2012

Lago de Atitlan

One can't miss spot in Guatemala is the lake. It is beautiful and is surrounded by mountains and volcanoes. It is in the highlands and it does not flow to the sea.

There are an abundance of small towns on the lake to stay on and I chose San Pedro at the foot of a volcano by the same name. It was recommended by friends from the volunteer house. I am sure any town would have been beautiful as the surrounding scene was amazing.

One famous thing to do at the lake is learn Spanish. When I arrived I noticed an abundance of Spanish language schools. From what I understood, these schools gave daily instruction for a few hours combined with an immersion program that housed you with a family. Tuition was cheap and included room and board where you would be forced to speak Spanish regularly. If I were to go to Guatemala again, I would stay on the lake and take lessons to improve my Spanish.

San Pedro had a lot of tourists as well as English speaking residents. With all the Spanish schools that is not a surprise. I met a few retirees from the United States who now call Guatemala and Lake Atitlan home.

I took a chicken bus to the town of Panajachel where I caught a water taxi to San Pedro. I spent two nights there. The first day I walked around with my camera and snapped some pictures of the lake and then ate on a rooftop balcony with a view. The next day I climbed the volcano in the area and then I spent time relaxing and reading on a large rock I found right in the lake. I could not have chosen a better day to do this as the sky was so blue and absent of clouds.

Eventually a cloud did show up, but it was still a gorgeous day. I celebrated by getting a sun burn.

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