Antigua, Guatemala: Ruins and Resilience

Yellow arch clock over cobbled streets in Antigua, Guatemala

What can be said that hasn’t been said about Old Antigua. The city of superlatives borders on exaggeration. Cliche’s fly from the mouths of even the most seasoned of travellers.

A city built upon ancient energy centers celebrated by the Mayans and later masked by the Spanish with churches in attempt to reform the people. Through it all, the Mayan culture remains. Natural disaster has also taken its swipe civilization and yet Antigua remains. What can be said is that resilience and strength are consistent qualities of the populace from its very origins.

Crumbling window in San Augustin Church in Antigua, Guatemala

Upon approach, the smooth roads are contrasted by the jarring cobblestone roads of Antigua. Literally from the moment the rubber hits the road, you’ll know you’ve arrived. Single storied buildings painted from the same pastel pallete you’ll find across colonial capitals throughout the central american region. For better or worse, the Spanish left their mark.

Town hall archways in central park, Antigua Guatemala

Religion and Mayan tradition overlap and intertwine. Have your pick, choose a theme and explore. Whether you’re in search of Mayan culture and history, Catholic tradition, or food and drink – Antigua is a dream. Antigua is best enjoyed at a leisurely pace, it’s the only pace there is. You wont find much in the way of action, but who needs action when you can spend your days meandering nameless streets in search of culinary delights. Coffee and chocolate are among the finest in the world. The conditions are just right for traditional cultivation and production. The same weather systems that provide a wide range of of fruits and vegetables, are the same conditions that allow you to enjoy the many faces of Antigua. From bright and sunny to cloudy and dramatic. A travellers dream, a photographers fantasy.View of Volcan Agua in Antigua Guatemala, from the rooftop of Hotel Candelaria

If you’re looking for a place to call home in order to get the quintessential experience in Antigua, La Candelaria is the place. Located a stones throw away from the incredible Iglesia de la Merced. Wander a few blocks further and you’re in parque central. Feeling energetic and keen for a view, head up the hillside for a panorama view from the mirador.

View of Volcan Agua down the cobbled streets of Antigua Guatemala, with coloured buildings lining the streets

Should you feel like taking it a little easier, head upstairs to the terrace for some light reading. Once the skies open up, (and they will) make your way indoors, and take in the tranquil afternoon shower from the courtyard. Each room has your comfort in mind. Soft colours and tasteful artwork designed to sooth you to siesta levels rarely reached anywhere. The hacienda style building allows for the outside to come in. Light pervades and air fresh circulates freely.

Pillars around the courtyard filled with plants in Hotel Candelaria, Antigua Guatemala

Traditional Guatemalan style furniture and fabrics in a room in Hotel Candelaria, Antigua Guatemala

Modern amenties are at your finger tips, perfect pressured showers and lightening quick wifi ensure you are comfortable, relaxed, and should you decide; productive if you choose to tackle a little work while away. La Candelaria perfectly combines all the elements that make Antigua so special. Breathtaking rootop views, mayan colours and decor with floral accents. Antigua at it’s very finest.

Orange rose flower in the sun

Flowers and a water fountain in the courtyard at Hotel Candelaria in Antigua Guatemala