Fantástico FloresMay 22 in Guatemala
We caught the red-eye flight from Guatemala City to Flores, only because it was the cheapest on offer, and we didn't have enough time to travel by Bus through the central areas of Guatemala. Staying near to the airport in Guatemala City made the early start a little easier, so did the lift to the airport by our Airbnb host. Considering the flight is only an hour, this gave us extra time to spend in Flores town before heading on tours to some of the nearby Mayan ruins. Fortunately, the short, domestic flight didn't mean a washing machine with a propeller. It did include one passenger that obviously had really important messages to send via WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger before the flight. And we mean on the tarmac. We thought he was about to conference call as we sped along the runaway, and only as the nose of the plane lifted off the ground did he decide to turn his phone onto flight mode. Airline staff seemed un-phased.
We landed in Flores a little after seven in the morning and were dropped off at the hotel by around 8:30am, giving the entire day to explore the island in the middle of Lake Peten Itza. In a similar style to other colonial towns, the brightly-coloured houses contrasted with the surrounding, clear, blue lake. A small bridge connects the old colonial town with the mainland suburb of Santa Elena. The island was the last remaining Mayan state before the invasion of the Spanish Conquistadors, who robbed the indigenous people of their land and claimed it for the Spanish crown. The area continued to be under Mayan leadership until 1697 when the Spanish attacked and destroyed the settlement, driving many indigenous to take refuge in the jungle for many years. The island is so small that it takes only a few minutes to walk from one side to the other. In the three days that we stayed on the island, there probably wasn't a street or lane that we didn't traverse.
Next stop: Mexico City (via Tikal and Yaxhá)
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