Guatemalan jungle – home of the Mayan Indians

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I wouldn’t say I like packing, and I love to travel. I resolve this contradiction by paying minimal attention to packing and then enjoying myself if I don’t miss anything important on my travels. Packing for the tropics has always been straightforward: warm things to wear (I was in December) and a swimsuit, a few t-shirts, shorts and repellent in my backpack. Its stench was omnipresent around us. After all, the Guatemalan jungle.

How do you recognize a tourist in Guatemala?

It was not only that we (our group) were different from the locals. It was also our height, skin colour, dresses, shirts and tongue. If you need someone to travel with can speak Spanish, then the trip will have added value. 🙂 Not that we’d starve otherwise; we can poke our fingers into a menu and ask for a gallo (beer), a margarita, a caipirinha and a piñacolada too, but travelling around the country would bring more unexpected situations.

Guatemalan jungle

Peter wants a short article about the most exciting experiences. Ugh, what to choose when I’m pretty chatty? I’ll start with the jungle. I thought that some “forest” couldn’t surprise me, but my jaw dropped the first time I came in contact with it. Ceiba trees (giant trees), palm trees (more like big palms), ramsons (trees with fruits that the monkey population feeds on), smells (non-transmittable), and most of all, sounds (just before dark). It also has attractions besides mosquitoes (watch out for dengue).

What is the name of Quatemala currency?

Semuc Champey

Semuc Champey

The Rio Cahabón in Semuc Champey can only be reached by a pickup truck, literally on it. The trip on the back of the pickup tested our arm strength, core static and bruise resistance. I don’t have the latter; the last one disappeared only recently. If you’re holding on well, you’ll admire the lanceberry, cardamom, coffee, cocoa and banana trees along the way.

Everything you can think of grows here. After jumping out of the back of the truck, I haven’t even adequately found my balance yet; little Indian girls are already offering me chocolate cakes wrapped in tinfoil. The moms make (all the ingredients have grown under their noses), and the kids sell. But don’t buy it from the little girl who reaches out her hand, hawks something (I have no idea what), but is satisfied when I take some and give her some quetzal (Guatemalan currency). And wonderfully, chocolate is divine, full of cocoa and cardamom flavour.

Hiking in hills and caves

If you want to see something from above, you must get there, mostly on foot. The view of the lakes on the 300-meter-long natural bridge was breathtaking, as was swimming in them.

Although I prefer air and light, I couldn’t pass up a “tour” of the cave in a bathing suit with a candle in my hand. The water was ankle-deep in places, waist-deep in others, and over my head in others. Being there alone, I was probably sweating. In a group, it was possible that more people, more candles, and shared expectations. It was only when the guide started throwing us one by one into the slush that we didn’t understand. But since we had no money for the ferryman, the cave spat us out, and we enjoyed tubing down the river, beer in hand, as our reward.

Guatemalan jungle is beautiful. Do you want to know what a pizza baked in lava tastes like? Excellent.😊 Look forward to the sequel.

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Ivana Viskupová
Ivana Viskupová

Passionate alpine hiker, mountain guide and good friend of the "restartnisa" and the 7 Hills 3 Lakes hiking challenge. Says of herself: "I become a better person in the mountains. They make me more humble and more receptive. They clear my head. It doesn't matter if the hill is 500 meters or 5000. Sometimes it's not even the hill that's important, it's the way to get there. I like to get to know the country and the people who live there."

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