The Program has been intentionally designed to allow you to get gradually get acculturated to Guatemala, while experiencing the true diversity and providing opportunities for you to get to experience and understand the local culture.
Colonial-style Guatemalan Hotel
Antigua, Guatemala was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1970, and is known by many as one of the most idyllic destinations in the world, thanks to its architecture, culture and unique setting. A former capital, the town features painstakingly restored Spanish colonial architecture, manicured parks, cobblestone streets, fascinating museums and traditional markets that lay nestled between three magnificent volcanoes.
Many of the homes, restaurants and hotels in Antigua are built on historical ruins and are surrounded by beautiful gardens full of flowers and trees. You will stay in a private room shared with 2 or 3 other students. Each room has a private bath with western toilet, and access to WIFI, and a traditional Guatemalan breakfast will be served at the hotel each day. Central park is approximately 5 minute walk away. The hotel includes laundry service.
San Lucas Tolimán, Lake Atitlán
Local family-owned Hotel
San Lucas Tolimán is a 95% indigenous Maya town on the southeastern shore of Lago de Atitlán, described by Aldous Huxley as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. While here, we will be staying in the family-owned hotel Los Volcanes, and working with various projects around town.
In Cantel, students will stay with local homestays near the local non-profit Chico Mendes Project, which we will visit over the weekend. The homestay experience is with a Guatemalan Quiché family in the highland town of Pachaj, Cantel where students will develop a deeper understanding of the realities of many families in rural Guatemala. Accommodations are simple – each student will have their own room, with access to a shower and toilet. WIFI is not available at the houses. Students will eat with their family each morning and evening, and have the opportunity to practice Spanish and learn Quiché with their family, as well as learning more about everyday activities that the families are involved in such as weaving and embroidering, growing food and grinding corn. Each student will have an individual room with your own key, as well as a key to the main door.
Quetzaltenango (Xela) is a beautiful city in the highlands, located in a vast valley surrounded by hills and volcanoes. Xela is a diverse city, preserving the ancient traditions of its Mayan-Quiche descent, combined with the dynamics of modern life and colonial past. It is currently considered as the second most important city for its size, industrial, cultural and commercial activity
Students will stay near the center of the old historic district, in twin-share rooms that include private bathroom, hot water and WIFI. Laundry service (typically 24 hour return) and convenience stores are located very nearby.