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adventure travel trip to Guatemala
Slow down, settle in, and connect with the friendly people of Guatemala.
Dates
  • Dec 6-12, 2014
  • Feb 28-Mar 6, 2015
  • Duration 7 days
    Group Size 8-10
    Land Cost $2,450
    Single Supplement $630
    Lodging 3 stars-4 stars
    Grade I
    Best Time

    Mindfully Engaging Guatemala

    Practicing the art of mindful travel in Antigua and Lake Atitlan

    Day 1      Antigua / Mindfulness orientation

    You'll be greeted on arrival in Guatemala and transferred about an hour to the colonial town of Antigua. Nestled in a mountain valley and surrounded by evergreen forests, Antigua is one of the most charming cities in the Americas.  The colonial architecture has been lovingly restored, parks and plazas are plentiful, and the horizon is defined by three spectacular volcanoes. With Lynn and Joan, and the other members of your small group, settle in for a 3-night stay at Meson Panza Verde, a charming small hotel. The central garden and fountain are surrounded by an ornate veranda and florally-bedecked terraces. Here in this idyllic setting, you'll receive an orientation to Antigua and to the mindfulness practice that will be central to the week's experience.

    Meals: Dinner
    Lodging: Meson Panza Verde

    Antigua's emblematic yellow arch and cobblestone streets
    Day 2      Antigua

    Panza Verde actually has many different rooftop patios at different levels. Before breakfast, find your own favorite perch to watch the changing morning light and then join the group for meditation led by Lynn. After breakfast, we set forth with our Antigua guide to orient ourselves to the city -- to its stunning architecture and multi-layered history, as well as to the rhythms of its daily life. Breathe deep, and absorb the colors, textures, sounds and story of this place. At day's end, Lynn will introduce additional mindfulness practices and we will enjoy a delicious meal.

    We've now established a rhythm that we will carry forward through our time in Guatemala. At the start and end of each day, Lynn will guide us through at least 45 minutes to an hour of structured mindfulness practice.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Panza Verde (or similar)

    From the rooftop of our hotel, Meson Panza Verde
    Day 3      Antigua hands-on options

    We embark on another full day in Antigua which we can greet from our rooftop in the early morning, another day which will begin and end with structured mindfulness practice. This is a day which can unfold in a number of different ways, depending on the leanings of our group members. Those who are interested can participate in a hands-on textile workshop, and/or make a half-day visit to a coffee farm. There will be opportunities to browse the mercado (market) and galleries, to explore solo, to do art or writing or photography.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Panza Verde (or similar)

    We'll visit with the weavers at INDIGO in Antigua
    Day 4      Lake Atitlan

    We greet the day from our Antigua rooftop, and we end the day on the shores of Lake Atitlan. Once again, we begin and end with structured mindfulness practice, while filling the intervening hours with new territory and new experiences.  Our three and a half hour drive takes us into the "highlands" where the traditions of the indigenous Maya have remained strong. We will notice this in the clothing, the language, the foods, the ceremonial sites and the villages.  In the afternoon, we arrive at Lake Atitlan, a gorgeous natural landmark, perhaps the most beautiful lake in the Americas, surrounded by a volcanic mountainscape, and dotted with small villages. Our hotel grounds contain their own meticulously maintained botanical garden, and the hotel lawns reach right up to the shoreline.  We settle in for a 3-night stay.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
    Lodging: Hotel Atitlan (or similar)

    Indigenous Mayan cemetery in the highlands where graves are above ground and brightly painted.
    Day 5      San Juan and Santiago on the Lake

    We continue our structured mindfulness practice, and we continue to open ourselves to new experiences. Here at the lake, we have the opportunity to watch the light on the water and on the mountains, and to observe the interplay of clouds and peaks. After breakfast, our local guide who intimately knows the Maya of the lake, leads us on a full day boat tour with stops in two very different villages. We visit a women’s weaving cooperative, as well as the studios of famous local naïf painters.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
    Lodging: Hotel Atitlan (or similar)

    Lake Atitlan offers a stunning interplay of peaks, clouds, blue water, and blue sky.
    Day 6      Silence by the lake and in the nature reserve

    Today, Lynn guides us through a morning of structured silence. The afternoon is flexible. Just down the road from our hotel, you can visit a forested nature reserve with well-marked trails. You can also take a tuk-tuk in the lively large town of Panajachal. You can wander solo. You can do your own art.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Hotel Atitlan (or similar)

    Find scarlet macaws in the nature reserve at Atitlan.
    Day 7      Guatemala City / Onward

    Today we return to Guatemala City for afternoon flights homeward, or to connect to explorations in other parts of Guatemala.

     

     

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    Meals: Breakfast

    Note abundant displays of native-grown calla lilies.


     
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