8 nights / 9 days !
Join other families for a truly “Meaningful, Memorable, Personalized” and magical experience in Guatemala !
Also great for extended families and friends. This itinerary includes group activities with free time in Antigua to experience the unique Semana Santa processions and festivities.
An incredible cultural experience regardless of your spiritual orientation. Flexible to add days before or after the group itinerary for birth family visits, additional travel, service work, etc.
You will be part of a group with other multicultural families sharing the same itinerary.
~ GROUP SIZE LIMITED TO 25 PARTICIPANTS ~
Arrival Sat. April 12th with departure Sun. April 20th, 2014
** As this is the busiest (and best) time of the year to experience Guatemalan culture, your deposit must be received no later than Dec. 1st, 2013 with payment in full by Jan 1st, 2014.
Itinerary includes 7 nights hotel, 7 breakfasts, guide, activities and all transports as listed:
* Saturday April 12th – Travel to Guatemala Airline reservations on your own or I can assist with the reservations.
Transfer from airport to Antigua. Overnight in Antigua (Family friendly hotel with free wifi, free drinking water, garden)
Included this day: Airport transport, hotel.
* Sunday April 13th – Orientation / morning with guide explaining the Semana Santa / Easter rituals and processions. Meet as a group during breakfast. Introductions and brief orientation to program. Depart hotel with professional bilingual as you learn about the cultural significance of the processions and alfombras carpets made of saw dust, flowers and other materials. This day is Palm Sunday a special day for processions and purchasing souvenirs made from palm fronds. Afternoon free to wonder around Antigua and take in more of the processions; colors, smells and tastes of Antigua and Guatemala. Overnight in Antigua.
Included this day: Breakfast, morning guide, hotel.
* Monday April 14th – Iximche / Panajachel
After breakfast, depart for Panajachel via the ruins of Iximche – the first Capital of Guatemala after the conquest. Iximche is still an active Mayan ritual site. Visit ruins, stop en route for lunch then continue to Panajachel. Afternoon/evening at leisure. Overnight in Panajachel (lake view hotel with pool). Included this day: Transports, guide in Iximche, entrance fees, hotel.
* Tuesday April 15th – Panajachel: Boat ride on Lake Atitlan / Fun Day After breakfast, take a boat ride on Lake Atitlan to the village of Santa Cruz where you will spend the day with your bilingual guide kayaking, rock climbing, swimming, relaxing and/or hiking. Lunch included. All activities follow strict USA safety standards and equipment. Afternoon return to Panajachel with 4:00pm transport back to Antigua.
Overnight in Antigua.
Included this day: Breakfast, boat ride, activities, lunch, hotel.
Wednesday April 16th – Cultural visit to “Ninos con Bendicion” –
After breakfast, depart with your guide for San Antonio Aguas Calientes (@20 min from Antigua). Enjoy a presentation from the Ninos con Bendicion. This program was designed to generate funds for the children to stay in school while also maintaining their cultural roots. The 17 children, ages 7-15, will present traditional Mayan dances as well as some traditional Guatemalan folk dances. A small snack (safe to eat) is shared after the dances. This is an excellent opportunity to see local culture in a “typical” home – try weaving, grinding corn, make tortillas and get a taste of daily life. Extra time for kids of all ages to play and share. Opportunity to shop for textiles and homemade crafts. Return to Antigua early afternoon and in time to see the children’s procession leaving from the La Merced church. Afternoon/evening at leisure. Overnight in Antigua. Included this day: Breakfast, transports, guide, snack, hotel.
* Thursday April 17th – Free day in Antigua / Alfombra making
Spend the day as a family resting or walking around Antigua seeing any or all parts of the various Semana Santa activities which include: 11:00am Procession from San Cristóbal El Bajo; 12:45pm Procession from San Francisco Church. 3:00 – 5:00pm – “Ceremonia del Lavatorio” – washing of the feet of the Jesus figure at Escuela de Cristo the Cathedral and La Merced Church (times vary). *** Opportunity to work on an alfombra / carpet in a local neighborhood ! . Overnight in Antigua. Included this day: Breakfast, hotel.
* Friday April 18th – Free day in Antigua *** These are the largest and most elaborate processions and alfombras of the entire Semana Santa holiday. Families start the night before creating very elaborate alfombras for the La Merced procession and all those that follow. The processions will be around Antigua all day and well into the night starting at 3:00am with the parade of Roman soldiers riding on horses and walking on Antigua streets (looking for Jesus and calling out counts against him) followed by the 4:00am procession from La Merced Church which is the largest & most elaborate of all processions, returning to the church late afternoon – all dressed in traditional purple robes . Throughout the day and night there are many more processions throughout Antigua! Some activities include: 12:00 – 4:00pm – Crucifixion ceremonies at Escuela de Cristo church and the Cathedral. 3:00pm – Processions from the Cathedral, San Felipe de Jesus and Escuela de Cristo church – all dressed in black / mourning robes. Overnight in Antigua. Included this day: Breakfast, hotel.
* Saturday April 19th– Free Day – optional: Volcano climb / Zip Line / Chocolate workshop and more.
Included this day: Breakfast, hotel.
* Sunday April 20th– Departure Transport from your hotel to the airport.
Included this day: Breakfast (for those departing after 7:30am), airport transport.
“The bottom line“
Cost of $805. per person (single rooms extra) includes: WELCOME PACKET with information and maps;
IN COUNTRY SUPPORT / EMERGENCY CONTACT 24/7; PROFESSIONAL BILINGUAL GUIDE; ALL TRANSPORTS;
8 nights HOTEL; BREAKFAST; ENTRANCE FEES AND ACTIVITIES as listed in the itinerary; USE OF CELL PHONE (optional); LOCAL CURRENCY UPON ARRIVAL (optional) and more ! Tips, meals, activities and services not listed are extra. Payment via personal check (US Dollars), Paypal or Credit card.
Note: Availability, prices and itinerary subject to change until reconfirmed with your deposit !
Please email with questions or for additional information * Nancy@GuatemalaReservations.com