Sunday, 16 December 2012

November, 2012 - FLORES & TIKAL, GUATEMELA

Friend Alex and I travel to Guatemala's largest Mayan ruin.  We pay extra for the first class express bus.  The bus was the lowest "first class" and slowest "express" I have experienced, with the 3 hour trip taking 4 1/2 hours.  The return trip was worse, taking over 5 hours, due in part to a blown tire.

We stay at the nearest town of Flores, on lake Peten Itza.  The old town is located on an Island, now connected to the mainland by a bridge.  We found a great hotel for $35 per night, including super clean rooms, WIFI in the lobby, AC and cable TV, with lake views.  The island is full of historic buildings, small hotels and restaurants.

We take a tourist van to Tikal and hire a guide.  After about 4 hours on site it starts to rain, cutting our visit short.  The wet mud paths and stone building materials are so slippery that it is dangerous to continue in the rain.  As it was I fell three times returning to the parking lot.  We had been warned by another guest at our hotel, who had returned bruised and cut, the day before.

Tikal is a very large site and definitely worth a 2nd visit.  Next time I would stay at a hotel on the site as the van ride, from Flores, is about 2 hours each way.  Then you can attend sun rise and sun set tours.

Alex and our guide take a break.

Tallest Temple.

View from the top and my southerly barrel chest (aka stomach).

Local wildlife on the path.

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