The arrival in Guatemala – Guatemala City

9109386005_a9635deb08_oGuatemala City, or Guate as they call it there, was my arrival place in Central America. In general, when I travel alone, I avoid stay long time in big cities, so I had only 2 days in town. During this period the city was had always some sort of fog, as it was screening the sun, it reminded me Lima, in Peru.

Guatemala is big, about 4 million people in a country of 15 million, therefore, great part of the action happen here. It is divided by zones by numbers, streets and avenues are also named by number. For example, I stayed at Zone 13, 15 av. “A” 5-30. This way of naming streets and neighborhoods gives me the idea of being planed, that they followed an urban plan. It is had to imagine this kind of nomenclature on Brazilians cities where cities grow randomly and streets come out of nothing.

Another point that caught my attention in Guatemala was the “Americanism”, starting with the way to name streets, like in the US. However, the biggest similarity is on the amount of fast-food and billboards. They are everywhere, all sorts of brands.

kb_gt13_0303I thought the city was organized, although the transit is crazy like any other city in Latin America. In terms of public transport, they are well served with many options as: the Transmetro, a bus that works like a subway; the tuk-tuks, the moto-taxi like in India or Philippines; and the “chicken bus”, a country landmark, they are old school bus refurnished and customized in terms of painting and drawing.

My visit to Guatemala City was fast, my first day way was to plan what I was going to do in the country, the second I visited the Chichicastenango market. And finally, after walking around zone 13, I hired a taxi driver (photo) to take me to see a bit of the historical center and from there, I departed to Antigua.

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Check out other posts on Central America trip (April 2013):

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