Recommend April 2018 - 7

Some 30 miles from the capital, La Antigua
Guatemala is a picture-perfect gem of a city and
a UNESCO World Heritage site thanks to its
sublime architectural treasury of Colonial-era
convents, churches and mansions. Founded by
the Spanish in the 16th century, La Antigua
Guatemala is both the oldest colonial city in
the country and one of the loveliest in Central
America. Look forward to exploring on foot, by
Segway, and aboard horse-drawn carriages.


Sights to see include the Palace of the
Captains General and the Cathedral on the
Plaza Mayor-the primetime location for
people-watching-as well as the elaborate
frescoes and paintings in the San Francisco
Church and the well-preserved 18th century
Convent of the Capuchinas. Even the ruins
here are beautiful, such as the Convent of
Santa Clara and La Recoleccion monastery.


Don't miss the fascinating Pre-Columbian
Glass and Art Museum inside the half-ruined,
half-renovated Casa Santo Domingo monastery
complex. The museum positions Maya artifacts
alongside modern glass sculptures, and the
result is fantastic. Also onsite is the Museum
of Colonial Arts, as well as 128 antiquesfilled rooms of the Hotel Casa Santo
Domingo, partly occupying a restored 16th
century convent.


Posadas, now occupying restored colonial
mansions, are the signature accommodation
style in La Antigua Guatemala. Choices are
many: among top-of-the-line picks are the
elegant 26-room Pensativo House Hotel.
Lovely Meson Panza Verde has one of the
best restaurants in the country, plus live music
nightly, and the 77-room Porta Hotel Antigua,
too, has a distinguished restaurant.

11. Enjoy gourmet dining in an array of
restaurants occupying colonial-era houses, with
tables set up in lush gardens or courtyards with
fountains. Enjoy a variety of gourmet fusion
cooking, including tasting menus; Guatemalan
and international dishes at Hotel Posada de
Don Rodrigo; French specialties at Bistrot
Cinq; and alfresco dining-garden or rooftop-
at El Sereno. And for just one simple dish:
one of 74 ice cream flavors at Sobremesa
Helados Exoticas.

12. Come nightfall, bars with a view draw
expats and Guatemalans. Just a sampling: Cafe

All photos: Guatemala offers everything from unique festivals and celebrated national dishes to colorful handicrafts.

No Sé with music most nights; Cafe Sky and
Monoloco with rooftop views; jazz and blues
at the Ocelot Bar near the main plaza; and
live Latin music on weekends at Restaurante
Las Palmas, and Casa Troccolli.


La Antigua Guatemala is a shopper's
paradise. Start with the handicrafts market,
then move on to dozens of boutiques: Nim Po't
is a sprawling emporium of artisanal Guatemala
products, from traditional clothing to woodcuts
and woven iPad covers. Textura and Colibri
both specialize in high-quality textiles-
everything from colorful scarves and tablewares
to hammocks-created by a network of some
500 Maya women in 25 villages. Uxibal is a
place to go for handmade shoes and bags.


Take a tour of the working coffee farm
at Finca Filadelfia. Better yet, make a day of it
and stay for lunch-or just check into one of
the Finca Filadelfia Coffee Resort's beautiful
suites-and take a jeep ride up into the forested
mountains for ziplining between treetops.


Day tour options include San Juan
Comalapa, best known for its tradition of
primitive folk painting, featuring scenes of
festivals and ritual dances (market days are
Tuesday and Sunday); the artisan village of San
Felipe, with some of the area's finest jade, silver
and ceramic work; and the town of Pastores,
ground zero for leatherwork. ➤



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recommend April 2018

Recommend April 2018 - 1
Recommend April 2018 - 2
Recommend April 2018 - 3
Recommend April 2018 - 4
Recommend April 2018 - 5
Recommend April 2018 - 6
Recommend April 2018 - 7
Recommend April 2018 - 8
Recommend April 2018 - 9
Recommend April 2018 - 10
Recommend April 2018 - 11
Recommend April 2018 - 12
Recommend April 2018 - 13
Recommend April 2018 - 14
Recommend April 2018 - 15
Recommend April 2018 - 16