Our next adventure was spending 6+ hours in a minibus from Flores to Coban on our way to Semuc Champey! I took this photo because it was the first street light we’d seen for weeks! The barely-floating ‘ferry’ was not my favorite…
When we got to Coban, we got ate and switched vehicles for the next 2 hour journey to the small, mountain village of Lanquin. The jungle mountains were lush and humid.
FINALLY, in Lanquin, we were transferred to the back of a pick-up for 30 minutes of bumpy 2-track down into the jungle valley. It was dark by the time we arrived at the Los Marias Hostel. Here it is the next morning.
Speaking of mornings- Los Marias made us lovely breakfasts! It seems that fried eggs are a breakfast staple, world-wide! The warm tortillas were a nice touch.
During breakfast at our hostel, we met Nichola Cagey and Travis and together we swam through the Las Marias caves with candles.
It was nearly impossible to swim while ALSO holding our candle- but our guide kept his dry and would relight ours after every swim.
After jumping off the rope swing into the river, we headed to see the terraced pools of turquoise water that make Semuc Champey a (hard to reach) tourist destination.
The water was refreshing and full of tiny fish who gave your feet pedicures! Next, we made the hike up to the viewing platform. It was definitely worth the effort.The climb made us hungry, so we bought quite a few of these rounds of homemade chocolate from the little kids outside our hostel. They came in cinnamon, anise, cardamon and vanilla. You can see the handprint in the one Jessie is holding. Authenitcally hand-made!
On our very last day in Semuc Champey- I almost broke my arm! (J- do you have a photo of the patch-job you did on me?)
Here’s the good/bad of how it went down.
The good news: our dorm was clean and nearly empty. The bad news: 0ur dorm room was at the top of a steep hill. The good news: there were wide, even stairs! The bad news: the stairs were tiled with decorative pieces of VERY SLIPPERY plates! The worst news: it rained the morning we left. I was doomed.( Here’s a gorgeous photo of the Cahabón River to build suspense.)
That morning I was the first one packed up, so I headed down to put in our order for breakfast since our pick-up would arrive soon. Half-way down the stairs I lost my footing on a slippery tile and my feet flew out from under me as my heavy backpack yanked me to the ground. Instinctually, I put my arm out to brace myself and my forearm connected with the edge of a concrete step. I let out a loud scream, “F*%@$!!!” Jessie comes running out of the dorm, top speed, down the stairs and slips on the step and scrapes up her ankle. What a good sister. I’m still yelling as Jessie undoes the buckles on my giant pack and helps me up. We cleaned up the scrape on my forearm with soap and water, applied some Neosporin and taped a panty-liner to the wound since it wouldn’t stop bleeding. Then, we shoved breakfast in our faces and prepared for another full-day, multiple-vehicle trip thru Guatemala. Thanks to some TLC from my sister, the cut on my arm healed nicely. (You can still see the scar, but just barely.) Here I am, happily eating more fried plantain chips on our way to Antigua. I love my sister!