Guatemala is a country overlooked by many travelers, for diverse topics that tend to circulate about it, many of them unfounded or, at least, not with enough force to rule out visiting such an incredible place. Here you will find some things you should know before traveling to Guatemala.
Is It Necessary to Take Any Special Security Measures When Travel to Guatemala?
One of the most frequent questions among travelers considering visiting Guatemala is whether to take special security measures. Generally, the answers that are found aren’t very encouraging, or at least, don’t encourage to travel to this country, but with common sense, there is no reason to have any setbacks.
The area of El Petén is considered the safest in the country, where even many tourists rent a car to explore it. In Guatemala City, it’s advisable not to be distracted since in this place occurs there more robberies to tourists. In the rest of the country, safety is relative, since there are conflictive zones, but in general, not for the tourist.
On the other hand, other safety-related issues must be considered, such as during the rainy season (from May to October), frequent landslides and changing weather conditions can affect driving. Nothing else.
This country has one of the most delicious cuisines in the world that captivates anyone just try it. You can taste dishes such as tamales, chuchitos, hilachas, Guatemalan enchiladas or rellenitos are just some examples of the delicious cuisine of this region.
Types of Transportation
If there is something that is necessary to consider when traveling to Guatemala, there are different types of transportation that exist to make a way around the different touristic attractions and sightseeing places in the country.
Chicken bus: Buses that, in general, are used by local people and, to a minor degree, by tourists for short journeys. You have to know that these don’t usually have capacity limits, so it is most likely to travel in a crowded bus. Also, this transport is not considered safe, even by locals, so the best option is to avoid them as much as possible.
Shared vans: This is the most used transportation for tourists in Guatemala. There are vans, with capacity for about 15 people, that can be hired directly through the hotel or a travel agency. This van cover the tourist routes and their price is fixed, also it stops every few hours to go to the bathroom or stretch passengers’ legs.
Buses (night/day): This is the best way to do some journeys, such as Guatemala City-Flores, where you can take the night journey since the seats are practically beds. The best option for long travels.
Mandatory Visit: Lake Atitlán
Contrary to what may seem at first sight, Lake Atitlan needs, if possible, several days to really enjoy it. It’s essential to visit all the villages that make life on its shores, 12 of them with the names of saints.
Highlights include Panajachel, Santiago Atitlan, San Pedro la Laguna, San Juan la Laguna and San Marcos la Laguna, which is said to be the most beautiful town on the lake. The best way to visit them is by boat since it’s cheap and better than the rugged mountain roads that communicate with each other.