29 December 2018:
Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala:
The Land of the Respendent Quetzal

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

Guatemala is a place of resplendent beauty, terrible poverty, great history, tragic bloodshed, vibrant culture, and a rebirth with a still uncertain future.

It has balanced on a knife’s edge for centuries.

Inland from the port of Puerto Quetzal lies the huge metropolis of Guatemala City, which would not qualify as one of the more attractive places on this planet. It is a place of grinding poverty, made worse by growling volcanoes all around.

But a bit further is the ancient city of Antigua Guatemala, which is a mostly intact Spanish Colonial city. In fact, the Spanish governed most of Central America from Mexico to Peru from here.

Antigua Guatemala has been damaged over the centuries by earthquakes and volcanoes. But somehow it has managed to maintain an air of dignity and quiet.

I traveled with guests today from the port about 90 minutes up to the old city. Along the way we had to traverse a section of highway that had been destroyed by the eruption of a volcano just a few months ago.

Today in Antigua Guatemala was a Saturday market day and a general festival between Christmas and New Year’s Day. Here is some of what we saw:

All photos and text Copyright 2018 by Corey Sandler, all rights reserved. See more photos on my website at http://www.coreysandler.com

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