Sushitoto Colonial El Salvador
Suchitoto Travel Blog› entry 23 of 24 › view all entries
October 13th, 2007 – by: jmaxiv
On Friday night, Santiago and I contacted each PADI dive center in San Salvador trying to find a dive to take on Saturday. We were considering a dive in Lago de Ilopango which is a crater lake formed by volcanic activity. It has an underwater lava mountain, fish and thermal plumes and bizarre rock formations. We also considered a dive off Los Cobanos where they have shipwrecks. Since it had rained for 9 straight days, only one center was even going to dive and everyone made a recommendation that the visibility in the Pacific dive sites is terrible and the crater dives have not much to see. So sadly we decided to avoid diving and instead find another activity. The travel agent recommended that in the rain the best option is to visit the colonial city of Suchitoto.So we hired Jimmy our travel guide and made a plan to meet early on Saturday.
Saturday I woke up early and with anticipation for getting out. The sky was grey, but Jimmy told us that it would probably not rain. Jaja Jimmy was wrong. First we paid him half the fee so he could fill with petrol. I was relieved that he was driving a modern Mazda 4x4 and normally I don't demand AC, but because of the rain I was glad for the AC cuz it was getting hot. At the petrol station, I bought a local snack called Tajaditas de Platano which is plantain crisps with chile, lime and salt. I liked it. It's a good combination of sour and spicy.
We drove round San Salvador and headed north toward Suchitoto passing through through Soyapango and San Martin (on Lago de Ilapango) it started to rain.Upon arriving to Suchitoto you pass the Volcano de Guazapa. This is a historical site where the guerrilla's based operations during the civil war (1979 - 1991). Suchitoto was a strategic city because of it's proximity to Guazapa, Lago de Suchitlán and the border with Honduras. The people of Suchitoto were very sympathetic with the guerrillas and to this day the city has a strong emotion toward communism. Interesting in contrast with European communists. The latin communists retain their strong religious beliefs and faith in God. The centro in Suchitoto was the site of a famous battle between the gov't army supported by the USA and the communist guerrilla's supported by the Soviets. The buildings retain the scars of gun battles. The colonial church is quite amazing and fortunately survived the various battles in Suchitoto.Many buildings have graffiti depicting the local sympathy for communism and revolutionaries.
Now there is a very nice vibe to the city. There are many artists and a few galleries to see indigenious artwork. Also there are crafts and other things on display. I think kayak tours are available as well. We had a perfect lunch at La Posada de Suchitlan. They have a great view of the lake and typical Salvadoran Foods. For me, I order pollo asado a la parilla típico with fried beans and plantains. Wow so delicious and with an awesome view.
The city is also a big stop for backpackers and has many hostels. We toured two of them and I really wish we had made a plan to stay in Suchitoto for the weekend. There are really nice views from the hostels of the lake. Hotel Los Almendros de San Lorenzo is a french run hostel with the best restaurant in Suchitoto. Next time I plan to spend the weekend in this place. Please see the pix below.
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