The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” ― Lao Tzu

Lucy and I hit the pavement hard in the morning, walking and taking pictures as if we were on some kind of crazy photography marathon.  Lucy lives in Antigua.  However, I only had one full day to see as much of this amazing city as possible.  And, amazing Antigua was.

I was completely captivated by everything I saw.  Every step was a photographic moment. Every building had a story to tell.  The rooftops were often in a spray of blossoming flowers in hues of purples, pinks and white.  The peeling paints telling the tales of centuries ago.  The missing cobblestones making each street a unique albeit tiring journey.  The mysterious volcanoes.  Threatening and looming off in the distance.  The colorfully dressed indigenous people.  Everything was a Kodak moment.  The problem was there simply wasn’t enough time.

Beautiful typical buildings and homes. There are many streets like this in Antigua. 

Jacarandas in full bloom bursting out behind buildings and throughout the city. 

Beautiful, historic walls and buildings with a unique contrast of new life versus destruction. 

Layers of paint tell stories of the past.  What color was it before? 

Beautiful stone walls. 

My stomach started growling around noon, my normal eating time.  After all these years (well, 40), I’ve come to understand that my body is like clockwork and I am very routine.  I eat at 8 am, noon and no later than 6 pm.  I’ve been this way for years.  It makes traveling hard (especially in countries like Spain where you eat well past 11 pm.  Never go when you are pregnant.  I did.  Big mistake!).  But I learn to adjust.

There was so much to see and experience in Antigua that I didn’t want to quit until finally we had to.  It was a necessity.  All that walking, talking and excitement made me feel like I was going to pass out.  I had to eat.  It was nearing two o’clock, well past my internal lunch time.

So where did we go?  Local of course!  Lucy knows all the fantastic local Guatemalan eateries in town.  Yes, you can find any kind of international or Western cuisine imaginable in Antigua, but did we really want to suffice for plain old McDonalds? No way!  Instead, Lucy brought me to one of her favorite haunts.  Unfortunately I never got the name (I’m sure Lucy will comment and provide it later) but it was incredibly delicious and a great price.   Plus, best of all the owners of the restaurant let us see a special surprise…..the rooftop deck and its amazing views of Antigua.  It was the perfect retreat.

Here are the photos….hope it makes you hungry!

Our restaurant.  The plates of the day.  Order three different options for a great cost!  And absolutely delicious.  

The different meat options.  

Our waiter. 

Lucy’s entree….vegetarian.

My entree.  Chicken and veggies.  

Lucy and I….two WordPress bloggers who met for the first time in Lucy’s Antigua. 

After lunch, our server told us to follow him.  He had a surprise.  The roof.  We climbed up a group of narrow stairs and reached the rooftop deck to uncover a gorgeous view of Antigua!  What a delight!  Here are the pictures from the top of the world.

I left our lunch feeling overly happy and full.  Yet I was so excited because there was still so much to see!  I could hardly wait!!!!!

Stay tuned…


  1. Hi Nicole! The restaurant is called La Cueva de Urquizo and you ate a traditional Guatemalan chicken dish called pepian served with tamalitos.

  2. Wow, this is great! Meeting other travel bloggers is a great way to submerse ourselves into the culture and learn about their expat lives. It’s really interesting to see the relationships develop over the years, over the internet. Such a wonderful thing the www!

    That chicken dish looks divine!

    Will you be joining the wwwp5k?

  3. 1. The colors in that first photo are stunning: red, violet, baby blue, green, golden yellow, all in a cluster. Clearly you know that the way to my heart is through my obsession with color!

    2. … And through my stomach. Oh. My. Yum. I just had dinner but am now craving guacamole.

    3. Seriously, some Guatemalan tourism agency needs to hire you full-time, because I’m moments away from booking a flight to Antigua. You are NOT helping my chronic wanderlust with these posts!

    😉 Loved it as usual, Nicole!

    1. Thanks Meghan!!!! ALl those nice compliments make me want to keep writing more posts!!! I still have a few left on Guatemala. Yes, you should go there. I LOVED it! I have my thoughts set on doing another volunteer trip next year to another country in Central America. I have been to Costa Rica too and really like that part of the world. We’ll see! 🙂 I really loved all the colors of Antigua. I would have to say it is one of my favorite cities I’ve ever been to in terms of pure beauty. Paris is tops of course. Happen to have lived there for 9 months studying aboard when I was 21 and it will always be my favorite city in the world. I also love Buenos Aires. Ahh….can’t wait to read more of your posts and see where you are traveling too!!!!!

  4. Unfortunately I never got the name (I’m sure Lucy will comment and provide it later) –> the same thing happened to me after meeting James, a fellow blogger (I’m sure you know him), in Hong Kong. I forget the name of a local restaurant where we had our breakfast and he commented on my post providing the name 🙂
    Btw, your first picture is very beautiful! It’s unbelievable how houses, flowers and a clear sky can match perfectly to make a very photogenic site (thanks to the colors!).

    1. Yes, Antigua is gorgeous and so picturesque! I do follow James blog too! Wish there was some way we could have a WP get-together some day! Wouldn’t that be great?!

      1. I’ve been thinking of such thing actually! Getting you, James and other bloggers into a meet-up at one place where none of us is native to it. It would be really great!

  5. Beautiful photos and I echo the previous comment about the guacamole. One thing I really miss here! The colors remind me of the flowers in Tengchong, Yunnan. Half a world away.

  6. I came here through my best friend Meghan’s blog and this rekindled my longing for Guatemala. I was living in Guatemala in the spring of 2010 and you brought the colors and tastes back to me in such a vivid way that I cannot help but be transported back. Thank you for the trip down memory lane… Now I cannot wait to explore the rest of your posts!

    1. Hi Roxanne! I love Meghan’s blog! She seems awesome! I’m glad you stopped by mine. Where did you live in Guatemala and what were you doing? Studying? Did you make it to other parts of Central America? I’ve only been to Costa Rica in C.America but would love to go back and travel around someday. I love it there! I have tons of posts on Guatemala but also lots on other places too like Costa Rica where I did a Cross-Cultural Solutions volunteer program two years ago. Funny, Meghan is doing a CCS program in Russia! We had that in common! Anyway, I hope you find some posts you enjoy!!! Nicole

    1. Mmmmm…did you know that Indian food is my absolute favorite! Especially the curries! We have a lot of Indians who live in Minneapolis and some descent restaurants are popping up but nothing like I ate there. I think they tone the spice down a lot here to make sure the locals like it.

    1. Thanks Karyn! Looks like you’ve been doing some catch up! I know I write a lot of posts! Thanks for reading and liking them all! I’m still so thrilled for you about your book! Wow, a real live published book! What an accomplishment!!!! You must be so proud!

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