La Antigua Guatemala

Welcome to this Online Journey Through and Around La Antigua Guatemala as we unlock the treasure chest of history, wonders, and secrets of this brilliant little jewel called Antigua.

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This is my Antigua, colonial gem of the Americas. Originally named La Ciudad de Santiago de los Caballeros, it was once the capital of all of Central America. Since the transfer of government to Guatemala City it is called La Antigua Guatemala (The Old Guatemala) and in local jargon simply Antigua – a welcome abbreviation when addressing a letter or adding frequent posts to an online journey!

Nestled within the Panchoy Valley of southern central Guatemala, three impressive volcanoes, Agua, Fuego, and Acatenango majestically dominate Antigua’s backdrop. Volcan Agua (Water Volcano), at its southern border rises more than 12,000′ from the valley floor. Inactive now, its crater wall ruptured in 1541 spewing mud, debris, and water that demolished the town at its base, Ciudad Vieja (Old City), and claimed the lives of some 600 inhabitants. Survivors relocated here to nearby Antigua to reestablish their lives and the seat of government.

Virgin forest, radio and cell towers, crown the peak of Agua; corn, coffee, and flowers are cultivated in the folds of the the lower slopes.

It’s possible to climb the volcano, but shouldn’t be attempted without a seasoned guide. A warm sweater is a must – it’s chilly at the top, take water and healthy snacks too – hungry and thirsty happen!

Just the thought of scaling Agua is exhausting. Let’s take a break now and continue our discovery of this jewel called Antigua later in upcoming posts. There’s so much more than volcanoes and government relocations, like: the people, the culture, and those aforementioned secrets.

Ciao for now,

mh

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Published in: on 17 J0000006UTC, 2011 at 13:00  Leave a Comment  
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