steel horse odyssey

steel horse odyssey

around the world by motorcycle

To Tikal

GuatemalaPosted by Jan Lamers 16 Jul, 2012 21:18:46
From Antigua we had a really nice ride up north on secondary roads. Via Coban,Chisec and Sayaxche we slowly descended from the highlands into the rain forest. That means more heat and more humidity. In Coban Kevin's bike wouldn't start anymore. It turned out that the ignition module had sadly passed away. Fortunately we brought a spare one so the next day we could proceed our ride to the Maya ruins of Tikal. To avoid having to walk around in motorcycle gear we decided to book a tour to the ruins. And that is how we found ourselves listening to a very annoying tour guide who held us, being the descendants of the conquistadores, personally responsible for the destruction of Maya culture.

Antigua's demise

GuatemalaPosted by Jan Lamers 09 Jul, 2012 07:41:30
We rode around lake Atitlan on very poor roads and visited the villages of Sololá, Santa Clara, San Juan and San Pedro la laguna. Especially Sololá was nice with the vibrant Indian market and the distinct typical dress worn by men. From lake Atitlan it was only a short ride to Antigua. Antigua is a very beautiful historic town with colored houses and cobble stone streets. The setting at the foot of the active Pacaya volcano is dramatic. But unfortunately Antigua has turned into a tourist trap. Boutique hotels, cafe latte macchiato's, MacDonalds, Indians doing their dance and an awful lot of tourists, yours truely included. Still very beautiful but the once laid back atmosphere has totally gone. We had originally planned to stay here for a while but now we just want to get out of here asap. So tomorrow we will head north via Coban and Sayaxche to the Tikal ruins.

Lago Atitlan revisited

GuatemalaPosted by Jan Lamers 04 Jul, 2012 23:00:55
We had a smooth border crossing into Guatemala at La Mesilla. First our bikes got fumigated for reasons still obscure to us. Then the migracion officers quickly stamped our passports and the only delay we had was caused by the aduana officers who were off for lunch and really took their time. We enjoyed the ride to Huehuetenango very much. First we were meandering through steep gorges and then gradually the highlands became more spread out. We passed little villages were colourfully dressed Indian people were running around like ants. We spent the night at Huehuetenago. The next day we got lost, which turned out to be a blessing because our gps's lead us all the way to Chichicastenango via minor roads through Aguacatan and Santa Cruz del Quiché. The roads were more or less ok to turn instantly into very dilapidated roads with huge pot holes without any warning or sign whatsoever. In Chichicastenango we witnessed some Indian offerings at the church on the main plaza. In the afternoon we arrived at Lago Atitlan. The ride down to the lake through the spectacular scenery is truely awesome. I was here in 1994 and the lake and its surroundings still have retained their beauty, although there is a much bigger set up for tourism now.