Walk Antigua Like a Local

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Lets immerse ourselves in the diversity of local Antigua culture. Antigua, Guatemala dates back to 1543 and was the second capital of the Spanish colony. The nearly 500-year-old city is cradled by three volcanoes and accented with colorful facades of 16th century mansions. We we will visit ancient buildings that once were convents, monasteries, and churches, becoming this a beautiful introduction to the Guatemalan lifestyle and culture. Our wonderful day around Antigua will be memorable and you will get a great orientation visiting San Francisco church, Parque Central, Santo Domingo, La Merced church, the street with the famous Santa Catalina Arch. We will also pass-thru some of our favorite spots, we will have time to enjoy local coffee, hot chocolate or refreshing sample beer. Be ready to fall in love with our little city.

Itinerary Details

Operated by: Columbus Guatemala Travel S.A.

This is a typical itinerary for this product

Stop At: Iglesia de San Francisco El Grande

From Casa El Jaulon we will walk down 1a Avenida Sur to San Francisco el Grande to first enjoy the amazing view from the second floor then visit the museum and the church's tomb.

Duration: 25 minutes

Pass By: Tanque de la Union

This historic meeting place was as a laundry for people to wash their clothes during colonial times and is still used today.

Pass By: Hermano Pedro's Hospital

Hermano Pedro became recognized for taking the sick and abandoned off the streets and physically carrying them to his hospital on his shoulders. He regularly traveled the streets wearing the tattered rags of those he served, ringing his bell to ask for donations to feed and clothe those he was caring for. All Guatemalans love Hermano Pedro (Brother Peter) and his selfless acts of kindness. Today, the hospital continues its Franciscan tradition and takes in those in need of help and care.

Pass By: The Plaza Central Park

Once the plaza was buzzing with activity. Vendors traveling from every region bringing goods and products to Antigua’s center used the plaza for the city’s market. A water reservoir appeared in the 1500’s to water the horses, but the well know Fountain of the Sirens did not appear until the 1700’s. Later the plaza was used as the main bus terminal, but was finally moved along with the market just outside of the city. The city’s center finally received its current identification of Central Park in the 20th century when the local government transformed the plaza into what it is today. Similar to a European park, trees were planted with statues of Greek goddesses adorned the gardens.

Pass By: Arco de Santa Catalina

The Santa Catalina Arch (Arco de Santa Catalina) is likely the most distinguishable landmark within Antigua, Guatemala. The iconic saffron colored arch is located on 5th Avenue North near the Main Square over looked by the Agua Volcano. The arch was built with the purpose of connecting the Convent of Santa Catalina Virgen y Mártir to a school in 1693. This allowed the cloistered nuns to remain secluded and unseen while moving about the city, as they were forbidden to interact with the public. With growing numbers of convent members the covered footbridge, the Santa Catalina Arch, was the perfect solution for keeping the spirit of seclusion. Today, the Arco de Santa Catalina is the Antigua’s most photographed attraction and a traditional rendezvous for New Year’s and Holy Week celebrations.

Pass By: Iglesia de La Merced

The church of La Merced boasts an intricately crafted baroque façade that reveals extraordinary stucco work created by the hands of talented Guatemalan artisans. It was one of Guatemala’s first male monastaries and was held by the Mercedian order. Inside the convent, visitors can admire Antigua’s largest water fountain.

Stop At: Casa del Jade

Learn about the mystical gem of love and eternal life, Jade, the stone of heaven. Revered by ancestral cultures more than gold. A true treasure of Guatemala. Museum, workshop, and shop.

Duration: 15 minutes
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