Guatemala: One Time Just Isn’t Enough

Guatemala: One Time Just Isn’t Enough
At Motorcycle Adventure Guatemala in Antigua, Grant and I rent two Honda Tornado 250s for nine days. The company offers great-looking tours, but we opt to save the money with a self-directed tour.

Guatemala is a relatively small country. It’s less than half the size of my home state, Michigan, but with much more diverse terrain. It often seems like it’s impossible to see enough of a country, but with nine days and the willingness to put in the miles, we set off to tackle the three very diverse regions of Guatemala.

Stage One: Semuc Champey

Not long after we arrive in Guatemala and shortly after all the talk of the ruins passes, we notice travelers and locals mentioning a magical place in Lanquin called Semuc Champey. Its main claim to fame is a river charging down a valley that disappears and runs underground before spilling out from a large cave into a wider, slower river. Aboveground, there are a series of crystal-clear pools connected by cascades and natural waterslides

But first we have to get there and for us that means using Google Maps to download the route on my iPhone. The one downside is I don’t have a phone mount for the bike, so stopping at major forks in the road becomes common. With better planning this can be avoided, but hey, we want an adventure! After taking the wrong turn twice, we stop for a look at the map, conveniently next to a taco stand. They are serving up my favorite: Mexican-style tacos al pastor. Two dollars later, we have lunch and some verbal directions. This is when the trip becomes real and my broken Spanish comes alive.