Following breakfast you will be met for a walking tour in Antigua. You will have the chance to visit the Antigua Cathedral, the Merced and the San Francisco Monasteries. Today, you will experience tuc tucs as well.
La Antigua (the old one), former colonial capital of the Kingdom of Guatemala, combines 17th and 18th century buildings and ruins with all the modern conveniences discerning travelers desire. The city was established as Santiago (St James) in 1543 after a mudslide destroyed the former capital. Santiago’s history was punctuated by massive earthquakes, followed by rebuilding and reparation, until the earthquake of Santa Marta in 1773 prompted a move to the present capital in Guatemala City. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979, Antigua exudes a unique atmosphere of history, intrigue and surprise. Resting in a fertile valley at 1530 m and surrounded by hills and volcanoes, Antigua’s climate is likened to ‘eternal spring’ Central Park, also known as the Plaza Real, Plaza de Armas or parque central, this was the center of government, commerce and society and formed the center of the original street grid system.
Its gardens and mermaid fountain make it a pleasant place to watch the Guatemalans at work and play. On the south side is the Palace of the Captain-General, home to the governor and his family, the soldiers and their horses, offices for employees, and the Royal Mint. On the north side is the Ayuntamiento (City Hall), built in 1740, its solid construction and graceful arches continue in daily use. Along the west, formerly ‘bakers row’, are banks, cafés, bookstores etc. Gracing the east side is the Cathedral, inaugurated in 1680 and destroyed in 1773. The front portion has been restored and is currently in use while the rest, which can be visited, lies in ruins.
Church and Convent of Santa Clara, stark and imposing from the street, the beautiful baroque façade of the church can only be admired from within the convent complex.
Then you will head back Antigua.
Overnight at Meson de Maria or similar (deluxe room)