Traveler’s Spotlight: Jungle Treks and Ancient Treasures in Central America

By July 17, 2018Team

The Trip: Guatemala and Belize | 3 Weeks
Traveler: Alex Moshenskiy, Digital Advertising Specialist

 

What was the best moment of the trip?

Having the opportunity to backpack with some of my best friends was all I needed. If I was to name a moment it would be the wandering the jungle to explore Tikal Mayan ruins while listening to howler monkeys and searching for toucans.

 

If you had to live in one of the places you visited, where would you choose?

Lake Atitlan in Guatemala was a beautiful high elevation lake with everything you want to be surrounded by small hillside towns accessible by boat.

 

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?

Riding for 3 miles on the luggage rack on top of a passenger van at a speed of 60 mph. Sometimes you arrive late at your destination and you really don’t have any options.

 

What was the most challenging thing you did?

Backpacking is work and takes patience and time and squeezing it into a vacation can be unpredictable. Transportation and roads were not Guatemala’s strongest suit, with more than ¼ of my time spent on 7-12 hour long bus rides.

 

Tell me about one person you met?

Elwyn was our taxi driver to get from the public bus stop into Belize’s friendliest town, Hopkins. He definitely lived up to the name as he helped us find our Airbnb and host just from a photo of the home. Then days later we went out with him and his fisherman friend for an amazing snorkeling adventure, complete with a BBQ on a private island!

 

What’s the best piece of travel advice you received while on your trip?

Mingle with the locals and they will guide you to the most incredible food and take you off the beaten path. It’s easy to get confused or lost in a new place, depending on the friendly people that live there to point you in the right direction.

 

Would you rather see a lot of places or get to know one really well?

It’s really a mixed bag. I like to go to places to experience them for myself and based on my time there I make a decision if I want to stay longer or move on to the next place. A flexible schedule allows you to get immersed in your environment rather than just knocking things off a checklist.

 

What is the next stop on your bucket list?

Norway