Went to the volcano Pacaya. Our group left at 6am on the dot. I recommend Andrenaline Tours, it was only $2 more than the other operators (so $10), but the guy they set us up with was prompt and we were the first tour group at the volcano which was great! The reason is that there are no big groups of people in front of you slowing you down (cause later in the day there were hundreds) Anyway, it was a decent walk up, took about 45 minutes through forest to get to the last lava flow. The rock was hard, crunchy, and very sharp. I was glad I lugged my hiking boots all the way. It was fun jumping from rock to rock. And a couple hundred feet walking on the rock, then you start feeling it. HOT. there would just be random pockets where you would just feel the HEAT coming out.
The guide had us break some little branches off bushes, and then he just tossed then on one heat spot and VOOOM!, almost instantaneous burning. We walked around. At some points you could see the lava only 1 to 2 feet down in a crack. Standing a foot away from a heat spot was twice as hot as standing next to a BBQ grill. A strong heat. You could see heat lines 5 feet in front of you warping the air. Hah, one funny thing was when my wife Karina tried to move and couldn't, and then she realized here boots were melting to the ground, and she wanted to get out of there. Crazy. I also had a ham & cheese croissant, and I cooked it on the ground, I had to turn it a lot cause it was burning to fast, and then I had to use a glove, and then I had to stop using the glove because the grips on the glove were melting to my hand, OW! But the croissant was tasty, and crunchy.
Volcan Pacaya, some other volcano in the distance, blowing smoke
yum. Anway, went back down. Careful. Karina tripped trying to avoid some horse crap and fell on her knee, that hurts a lot when its broken stone steps. She was tough though. Got back to Antigua
. Relaxed a bit. We wanted to get some massages, but they were way too expensive, more than I'd pay in Chicago (they were something like $50 an hour). So we went to see some of the variouis church ruins. We also stopped by at this restuarant that had this food on display, "Cuevita de las Urquizas", and got some stuff to go. That stuff turned out to be the best food we had in all of Guatemala, and at a fair price too. MMMMM so yummy. I got the fajitas, and pupusas, and caramalized platanos fritos, and something else. GoooooD! Now we ate this food back at our hotel as it was getting chilly. I should note that the Peruvian restuarant is now closed down, sad, because we had been really looking forward to going there, but at least Cuevitas food was great.