Tuesday, May 22, 2018

From San Cristóbal to Lake Atitlan

Panajachel in Guatemala

Panajachel is a good base town to explore lake Atitlan in Guatemala due to its transport facilities. If you are short on time, it may be your best option to spend the night and explore the rest of beautiful towns of Lake Atitlan like San Pedro, San marcos, San Juan, ...
Lake Atitlan view, from Panajachel, Guatemala

How to get from San Cristobal de las Casas to Panajachel

To get to Panajachel (Guatemala) from San Cristobal de las Casas in Mexico, we bought a coach ticket from a local travel agency. It cost us about 500 pesos, but I don't remember if we went by a coach or a minivan. I think we left early in the morning and arrive to Panajachel around 18h, just on time to see the sunset.
On the border between México and Guatemala, we had to pay 332 mexican pesos to leave México, you  must pay this tax if you have stayed more than 7 days in México. There is no fee to enter Guatemala.
Once in Guatemala, our coach stopped in a service area and we took some money from the cash machine to have some quetzales. 
Landscape of Guatemala

Landscape of Guatemala

Santander Street, Panajachel

main street in Panajachel, Guatemala

Casa Feathers hotel, Panajachel


Casa Feathers hotel, Panajachel

Café Moka in Panajachel, Guatemala

Breackfast in Café Moka, Panajachel

We didn't get to see much of Panajachel on that first day. I leave you some clips of our day below. The next post will be about the towns we visited in Lake Atitlan. Keep tuned ;)




Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Brunch in Barcelona

Flax & Kale

Before continuing with the Guatemala trip post’s, just a quick recommendation for breakfast, brunch or to eat in Barcelona’s center, near Plaça Universitat: the fabulous and gorgeous AND HEALTHY Flax and Kale. They call themselves flexitarian, which basically mean flexible vegetarian, with not only healthy, but extraordinary beautiful dishes that will catch your eye.
This is what we ordered , the raw superbowl and Teresa's favorite kale salad, and it was excellent. 
Colorful vegetarian dish, in Flax and Kale Restaurant

Colorful vegetarian salad in Flax and Kale restaurant


Check their site or Instagram to see more delicious coloured dishes. Make sure to book in advance , especially if you want to get a space in their lovely terrace.


Adress

Flax and Kale

Carrer tallers 74b, 08001 Barcelona



Wednesday, March 21, 2018

A weekend in Amsterdam

Two days in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is a perfect city for a weekend escape, even though you could stay there forever and it probably won't be enough. I love Amsterdam, it is not a secret, if I had to move out of Barcelona I could easily chose Amsterdam. So beautiful and calm, it has the vibe of a town more than a stressed city and every corner and canal are just prettier. I definitely could see myself living there. Unfortunately, we just had 48 h to explore the capital of Netherlands so this is pretty much what we saw.


Amsterdam canal

Amsterdam canal

Things to do

We  knew we didn't have much time,  so we had clear that we didn't want to go mad running from one attraction to the other and we were happy just walking trough the canals. Still, here is  a list of the areas and places we didn't want to miss.


  1. Jordaan area: This was on the top of our list and it is right where we started :). We enjoyed its cool vibe and had a walk trough the Noordermarkt, full of organic food stands. 
  2. The Nine streets: so cute.
  3. Have a boat trip: Save it for when you are tired or when it rains.
  4. De Pijp area: Full of trendy bars and restaurants.
  5. Damrak street: Just a clasic, some of the most famous canal houses in instagram.
  6. Eating in Moeders: Moeders means mothers and this restaurant is a tribute to all the mum's and their food, which is the best. The restaurant is full of pictures of mothers hanging on its walls and the food is traditional and, of course, excellent. 
  7. Try the famous apple pie in Winkel's: Yummy.
  8. Begijnhof and Bloemgracht: lovely locations to take pictures.
  9. Visit museums: Anne Frank's Museum, Van Gogh Museum, Rijks Museum (and it's library!)
  10. The red district


Amsterdam street, Netherlands

Bridge in a canal of Amsterdam

Amsterdam's street

Rijks Museum facade in Amsterdam

Amsterdam canal and street

Amsterdam's canal

Amsterdam's canal

Inspiration

If you are planning a visit to Amsterdam, you may want to have a look at these blogs, they are just amazing:

-Design love fest: Such an amazing posts on Amsterdam (check part 1 and part 2). This blog is just a jewell itself, full of art, design and inspiration, but also all its travel posts are just amazing.
-As the bird flies: Another little jewell full of Amsterdam posts. 

Amsterdam's canal

Amsterdam canal houses facades

Cheese window shop in Amsterdam

 
Street of Amsterdam



Amsterdam's bridge

If you have enough time, visit Wildernis, what an amazing plant shop/cafe. You can just love it. I didn't take any picture of the interior, but I leave you with a screenshot of google images so you have an idea of how amazing and beautiful it is.
Wildernis cafe, plant shop in Amsterdam

Wildernis interior screenshoot, interior garden


We were lucky and got a table in Moeders.

Moeders restaurant in Amsterdam

And we couldn't resist trying the famous apple pie of Winkel 43.

Winkel 43, Amsterdam

Winkel 43's apple pie, Amsterdam

Donoughts and cakes in windowshop

And finally, a couple of Damrak street/canal shots.
Damrak avenue, Amsterdam

Houses in Damrak avenue, in Amsterdam


Amsterdam video

Friday, March 16, 2018

Brunch in Barcelona.

Alsur cafe in Born

Before continuing with the Guatemala trip posts, let me do a little brunch break and recommend this great  place for brunch in Barcelona: Alsur cafe. I love this place, the food is amazing and the location couldn't be better. Located in a little square in the middle of Born, this cafe has great and comfy decoration, big windows to the exterior, and it even has some tables out in the square so it is just perfect. It is quite big, so it is quite easy to find a table.

Avocado waffle in Alsur cafe, Barcelona

Avocado waffle in Alsur cafe, Barcelona

Juices and avocado waffle in Alsur cafe, born

Red Velvet cake in Alsur cafe, born

Brunch in Alsur cafe, Barcelona

Dish in Alsur Cafe, Barcelona

Every time we meet there I have the perfect excuse to wander around to some of the most famous spots of Barcelona: Mercat de Santa Caterina, Arc de Triomf, Barcelona,... And after such a great food it is always good to have a long walk along the beach!

Colorful roof of Santa Caterina's market in Barcelona

Arc de triomf , Barcelona

Torres Madre , villa olímpica, Barcelona

Villa olimpica, Barcelona

W Hotel in Barcelona

sea view from Barceloneta

Street in Barcelona

cathedral in Barcelona

Photo mural of a kiss in Isidre's Nonell square, Barcelona

How to get there

Alsur Cafe (Born):
Plaça Sant Cugat 1
08003 Barcelona







Tuesday, March 6, 2018

San Juan Chamula and Zinacantan

How to get to San Juan Chamula and Zinacantan from San Cristobal de las Casas

 If you are staying in San Cristóbal de las Casas for a couple of days, you may consider visiting the church of San Juan Chamula and the town of San Lorenzo de Zinacantán. This two towns are pretty close to San Cristobal (San Juan is 10 km away from San Cristobal and Zinacantan is just 7,5 km from San Juan Chamula).
In San Cristóbal de las Casas you can take a colectivo (shared taxi-van) from calle Honduras with Utrilla to San Juan Chamula. Once in San Juan Chamula we couldn't find a colectivo to go to Zinacantan. We asked some locals and they told us that we had to take a taxi, so we just went to the taxi stop and negotiate a little the price.
To get back from Zinacantán to San Cristóbal de las Casas we took  again a colectivo . The stop was really close to the church,  so you can't miss it.



San Juan Chamula

 San Juan Chamula is an independent town with its own rules and laws. The chamulans are from the totzil group and have their own traditions and very strict rules. The rituals on its church are very particular, and you will see candles, straw on the floor, eggs and chickens. It is very important to know that it is not allowed to take pictures inside the church and, in general,  to the chamulans, as they think that you are stealing their soul. And they won't play games with that rule, they can be very aggressive if they see you with a camera and they would even take it away from you, so just be  respectful with their traditions and beliefs as you should always be anywhere, anyway.
Another surprising fact of the chamulans is that they are kind of addicted to Coca Cola, and they even use it in their rituals, as they believe that its gas helps getting out the bad things of the soul. 

San Juan Chamula's church, Chiapas

San Juan Chamula, Chiapas

View of San Juan Chamula's church, Chiapas

Yellow brick road in San Juan Chamula, Chiapas

This long yellow brick road made me feel like Dorothy in 'The Wizard of Oz'.

Tourists in yellow brick road in San Juan Chamula, Chiapas

San Lorenzo Zinacantan

Zinacantan letters sign, in San Lorenzo Zinacantan, Chiapas

San Lorenzo Zinacantan is a beautiful town surrounded by mountains and its inhabitants, also totzils, dress with their traditional clothing, which are very bright and colorful. When we arrived there , there was a band playing in front of the church and we enjoyed the festive atmosphere. We also loved the views of the mountains, they had a kind of a magical air.

Zinacantan's church, Chiapas



Zinacantan's church, Chiapas

Women in traditional clothing, Zinacantan, Chiapas

Zinacantan mountains, Chiapas

Back to San Cristobal


San Cristobal de las casas's Market, Chiapas

San Cristobal de las Casas, México

San Cristobal de las Casas, México

And then we decided to go to 'La Frontera' as we loved the place and we had something to eat on the patio. Soon it started to rain, so we went inside and enjoyed a hot cup of cacao.

Frontera's food, San Cristóbal de las Casas

Food in Frontera cafe, San Cristóbal de las Casas

Old Beatle in San Cristobal de las Casas, Mexico

Old white  beattle car in San Cristobal de las Casas, México

Sweets and cookies in San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas

San Juan Chamula and Zinacantan video

And, as usual, I leave you with the clips of San Juan Chamula and San Lorenzo Zinacantán.



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