Flores Journals

Trek to Tikal

A June 2005 trip to Flores by coloradowanderer

tuk tuk Photo, Flores, Guatemala More Photos
Quote: The prime reason most visit Flores is the close proximity to the Mayan site Tikal. There is not much to keep you here, but there are plenty of hotels and restaurants for every budget.

Trek to Tikal

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

tuk tuk Photo, Flores, Guatemala
Quote:
Flores, a small island in Lake Peten Itza, is serene and charming with cobbled hilly streets in comparison to the town of Santa Elena. It's crowded dusty streets, bustling with locals and vendors, is likely the place your bus or van will stop. If you have a backpack, walking across the bridge is possible, or jump in a tuk-tuk for 5 quetzals that will drop you off at your hotel. Explore the circling streets around the town and wind your way up to the top. There you can find a church, town square, basketball court and inexpensive food stalls and restaurants. Have an ice cream cone and chat with locals or maybe even a traveler you met before. Not a whole lot to do here except browse souvenir shops....Read More
La Casona de la Isla Photo, Flores, Guatemala
Quote:
I did not make the 4:30am wake-up with the other travelers at the hostel to make an early start to Tikal. The dark sky was threatening rain, so I decided to splurge and check into a hotel with air-conditioning, cable TV, lake view, pool, and hot tub. La Casona, a step above my usual accommodations when traveling for a month, has a pink with blue trim exterior, a cheery, yellow- walled dining room, pool-side bar and outdoor dining. Luckily I was allowed into a room way before check in. The room was nicely decorated although not that big as it was a single for $35US. I watched the storm from the deck and waited hours reading about Tikal and watching TV. Eventually the sun made an appearance again s...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 27, 2005

La Casona de la Isla
Calle 30 de Junio
Flores, Guatemala

Hospedaje Dona Goya

Hotel | "Hospedaja Dona Goya"

Quote:
I did not have a travel book for Guatemala, only my notes from research. It just so happened that the van I was in stopped right in front of this hostel. I recognized the name so I rang the bell, the door is secure 24 hours a day. I was let into a dining room filled with pictures, memorabilia, and glass bookcases. After checking me in, the worker suggested choosing a bed upstairs because of the large screened windows provide a breeze. This is a no frills, basic hostel with 2 large dormitories with at least 10 bunk beds each, concrete floors, fans, and a porch. The shared bathroom is off the back, with a view into the courtyard and a woman hand-washing clothes and hanging them to dry. It is small ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 27, 2005

Hospedaje Dona Goya
Calle la Union
Flores, Guatemala
+502 7926-3538

Youth Hostel Los Amigos

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel | "Los Amigos"

Youth Hostel Los Amigos Photo, Flores, Guatemala
Quote:
This is a new, true backpackers’ hostel run by fellow travelers that are still trying to get the word out about their hostel. They provide loads of information about the area and sell bus tickets out of town. The interior courtyard has hammocks, trees, and a resident parrot. A washing machine is available, pay by weight, but there is no dryer. That can be a problem in the rainy season. There is a small lounge area with Internet access and a book exchange. A few picnic tables are often packed with people from all over the world sharing travel tips or eating huge mounds of pasta or fresh french fries. Several Mayan women run the bar and do all the cooking in the small kitchen. The wait can be long...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on August 27, 2005

Youth Hostel Los Amigos
Calle Central
Isla de Flores, Petén
(502) 78675075

Restaurant Le Villa del Chef Photo, Flores, Guatemala
Quote:
I was pleasantly surprised to find this Mediterranean oasis in Guatemala. There are only two tables in the colorful front room, one large table in the main room, and a few on the deck overlooking the lake. The cluster of cushioned chairs makes it seem as if you are in someone's home especially when the owner comes out and joins you. Seeing how hot I was, he returned with a cold, eucalyptus cloth for my neck. While we waited for his homemade rolls to bake, he told me about his life in Israel, then about taking over the restaurant only six months earlier and changing the menu. He has loyal customers that love the food, as did I. He wishes to add more Mediterranean cuisine but the ingredients are not ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 27, 2005

Restaurant Le Villa del Chef
Calle 30 de Junio
Flores, Guatemala

Tikal National Park

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Mayan Site"

Tikal National Park Photo, Tikal, Guatemala
Quote:
It is highly recommended to get an early start, leaving Flores at 5am if you are not staying at one of the expensive park hotels. This way you have time to climb a temple before the sun rises at 6am, hear the jungle wake up, and beat the heat. Keep your eyes out for the exotic wildlife crossing signs and animals along the road into the park. Only buy your ticket from the official booth yourself for 50Q, which is about $7. The park map is a good deal and the translations into English are quite humorous in parts. At that hour of the muggy morning, I descended into the jungle alone, listening to the birds squawk and waiting for the howls from the monkeys. The first time I heard the roar from a ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on August 27, 2005

Tikal National Park
Peten Basin
Tikal, Guatemala
+502 2367-2837