• Day33

    Maximón - the weirst tradition?!?!

    June 28, 2016 in Guatemala ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    We got to this random little town around the lake and we heard about this Saint, the Maximón is an ancirnt religious/folk wooden figure that locals bring cigaregttes and rum in offerings, praying, humming, lighting candles and singing in ceremonies that last for hours to ask for blessings. They decorate him with ties of the western white man, put money between them, even lighting up the cigarettes in his month and put a glass of rum on ice! It was amazing to witness this incredible ceremony.

    (The veneration of Maximón is not approved by the Roman Catholic Church)
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  • Day33

    Lake Atitlan

    June 28, 2016 in Guatemala ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    On our next stop through beautiful Guatemala it took us into the Highlands to Lake Atitlan, surrounded by Volcanos, almost 90% indigenous population still living their lives like centuries ago, slow pace and throughout the poverty a looooot of welcoming friendliness, laughter and smiles... just a lively vibe everywhere around 😍😊Read more

  • Day32

    Chichi Markets -an incredible experience

    June 27, 2016 in Guatemala ⋅ 🌧 18 °C

    Yes there is an abundance of markets all over the Americas, especially those for tourists, what makes this one so special? - well, first of all its not only /or actually just a small part is for tourists, the markets are dominated by local farmers and traders meeting in Chichicastenango every Thursday and Sunday for centuries already... you can feel this vibe! 😍

    There's no place like this, so colourful, loud, hectic and vibrant... almost everyone is wearing the indigenous costumes of their town, exchanging goods, grabbing a bite, in between a tuktuk driver, little kids playing ...so much life!

    We didnt buy anything and yet spend over 5 hours just walking through all the little alleys...it was amazing!
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  • Day30

    Climbing the active Volcan Pacaya

    June 25, 2016 in Guatemala ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    Lazy as we are 😉 we've decide to spare our energy and ride up the volcano on a horse 😂 instead of a 1hr hike up the ashes.... definitely the best decision as we also arrived at the top before anyone else and before the crater got covered in clouds...

    We did marshmellows over the lava, saw Volcan Pacaya spitting stones & ashes just a few hundred meteres away from us while Volcan Fuego was errupting with lava and high flames of fire in the far backround!

    Stunning 😍😍😍
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  • Day29

    Antigua Guatemala, Guatemala

    June 24, 2016 in Guatemala ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

    After a rough 8hr night bus ride from the northern jungles of Guatemala through the central highlands we arrived in Antigua just after sunrise. The ancient capital of Guatemala is really a hidden gem with colourfully painted colonial houses, clean cobblestone streets, vibrant markets, indigenous costumes and a laid back atmosphere....all set in a valley between 3 of Guatemalas 11 active Volcanos...

    Still one of my favourite cities in Central America...
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  • Day27

    Tikal, Guatemala

    June 22, 2016 in Guatemala ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    After a short visit through Belize we've finally arrived in the north of Guatemala, the ancient Maya ruins of Tikal.
    Although the weather was at first a bit disappointing, with thick fog and clouds not allowing us to see the sunrise...still it was a special experience to climb the top of the 65m high ruin at 4am in full darkness...
    Slowly the jungle awakes, more and more birds start singing, you can hear the dinosaur-like screams of the howler monkey in the far while you close your eyes to imagine how it must have been 2000 years ago when the Mayas ruled over most parts of todays Central America...

    A magical place...
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  • Day24

    Escaping the storm into Belize!

    June 19, 2016 in Belize ⋅ 🌙 26 °C

    From the stormy coast of Mexico we decided to 'flee' into the rainforest and jungles of Belize with Alica and Matt.

    After reading about the Mexican exit fee scam when crossing land border into Belize we've spent the morning reseaching various travel forums to find out if we have to pay or not. Reading about the most recent but very contradictory experiences of other travellers we decided to try and argue not to pay. Unfortunately the lady in the booth at immigration was absolutely not impressed and called her supervisor who sent us to Belize saying if we wouldn't pay he wouldn't give us an exit stamp into our passport. But we could try to get into Belize without....another10 minutes later at the belizean border we were sent back to Mexico... Our mood worsened immediately when the c*** (and I don't like using that word) at the border then tried to play up, saying she now wouldn't let us cross the border at all, even if we paid!!! 😈😵 well, she quickly took that back again tough after I asked to speak to her supervisor again....😂😂😂

    Anyway, we made it in the end, we're in Belize now, staying over in the small fishing village of Corozal then onto the western jungle towards Guatemala, hoping to escape the rainy, stormy coastline and hopefully find some adventures in the rainforest...
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  • Day22

    A storm is coming!

    June 17, 2016 in Mexico ⋅ ☁️ 26 °C

    Further down south on our way to Belize we stopped over at the Bacalar Lagoon and got surprised by a tropical storm. Funnily this was the first time in this travel we had decided to camp, and the first night was great, but in the morning the storm came...

    Within minutes the 'apocalypse' started and the first tents got flooded! We just made it... we ran outside into the storm to our tent, got our backpacks and into reception, just kn the moment as our tent literally flew away...

    The staff started getting nervous as they heard the storm was gonna last for 3 days, so they had to sort us campers out with another sleeping solution... amazingly a once in a lifetime experience as we got accommodated in a 'chicken-bus' (an old American school bus) converted into a bedroom 😉😂😎

    Well, although probably not the best mattress ever and all nighr the rain was pouring down outside... we set outside watching the thunderstorms, lightning and drinking a nice chilled Caribbean rum with other 'survivors'... (and Dirty TheGoat) 😂😂

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  • Day21

    Chichén Itza

    June 16, 2016 in Mexico ⋅ ⛅ 35 °C

    Some call it the most impressive ruin of all, with its massive perfectly shaped and positioned main pyramid in the centre.

    The first stop with our guide was the ball field with its fascinating and mysterious accustics, which due to its architecture and high walls allows to hear someone talking at the other end of the 96m long field where the upper class Mayans used to play their rubber ball game. With 7 players in each team it quite reminds of a mixture of basketball and soccer...

    Afterwards carrying on to the platforms where rituals and offerings (also human offerings of decapitated enemies was held, to the main pyramid. We were lucky enough to arrive early in the morning, before the crowds in all the largest tourist busses, so we almost never had people in our way and could try out the echoing sound of our hands clapping being reflected from the pyramids stairs (sounding exactly like the singing of the Quetzal, sacred bird of the Mayas).

    We discussed the positioning of the pyramid right in the centre of 4 Cenotes to the north, south, east and west. And he told us that only last year during a new screening of the pyramid archeologists had found another (dried out) Cenotes/cave system under the pyramid, this coming October excavations will start as they're expecting interesting offerings and maybe more hidden treasures inside, that could teach us about their surprisingly advanced knowledge of the stars, the astrology and maybe provide more information on how and why these giant structures were built in such a perfect position.

    Btw for those of you who didn't know, only twice a year during sunrise (21st March and 21st September), the shortest and longest days of the year, start of spring and automn the sun lights over the corner of the pyramid and draws little triangles on the side of the staircase so that step by step the light is 'crawling' down from the top of the pyramid down the side to finally light the head of a massive snake...coincidence???

    You may believe what you want, but after visiting the great pyramids in Egypt, the Inka ruins in South America, Angkor Wat in Cambodia, the Nasca lines in Peru and the Mayan sites here in central, even the most sceptical person starts to question about what we're tought in science and history...

    -Seb & Stef-
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