T-3 days before taking the plane towards France … So, on the occasion of our last Saturday in Guatemala, we decide to return to the lake Atitlán … (You probably already included in the article last week, but we loved this place!) Same car, same driver, here we go again for a ride!

After two hours of driving, we arrive at our destination, under a bright sun. (We learn later in the day that the small town of Tecpán is famous for its capricious weather, while on the rest of the Guatemalan lands, the thermometers display several degrees more …)

Just arrived, we head to the pontoons where take the local public transport. We are witnessing an incessant broom of boats arriving, unloading, recharging and leaving! No salsa, no marimba on the port, only these salesmen chorus, sung by men who run from one street to another to attract tourists: “25 Quetzales for all destinations! 25 Quetzales! 25 Quetzales! “. This time we take the boat to Santa Catarina, which is exactly the opposite of San Pedro, the village we visited last week. This opposition is far from being only geographic: while San Pedro is very touristy and “trendy”, Santa Catarina is much more peaceful and less frequented by tourists. We are very lucky today because the weather is mild (it must be noted: the trip is without jolts, unlike last week).

In Santa Catarina, a feeling of serenity comforts us. We wander in the sunny lanes, to the rhythm of the religious songs that spread from the place of the Church. We start a small walk on the heights of the city … Always camera in hand and ready to find the best shots for the documentary, we climb until the road comes off the side of the hill, so to enjoy a breathtaking panorama. Santa Catarina spreads over the opposite reliefs. From the heights, the colorful houses seem built on top of each other, forming a colorful carpet and moved by the daily activity of its inhabitants. The village looks at the lake and its three volcanoes. We stay a long time to enjoy this view, through our camera lenses first and our own eyes afterwards …

We return to the shores of the lake, for a ride – this time horizontal – towards the hot springs Don Cesar told us about. We find a small shady corner where we decide to sit down a little. Beside us, a family bathes and enjoys the heat of the sources. A little further, a mother and her six children came to wash the whole family in the lake. While clean clothes pile up on a rock, children play with t-shirts they use as dip nets. Their bright laughter spreads to us, while the smile of their mother seems to freeze the moment.

At mealtime, we resume the management of Panajachel. On the way, we come across a small restaurant whose façade attracts our eyes: drawings and flowers share the canvas. We discover a shaded backyard, furnished with blue and green tables. A light wind crosses the place and floats garlands of colored fabric. On the menu this afternoon, burritos and crunchy vegetables perfectly cooked … A treat!

Quickly, the time of shopping for some (especially one of us, you will surely recognize!), While the others bask in the sun ice in hand (you will recognize them too!). It only remains an hour before heading back to Tecpán … We go to a small place isolated from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the city. Lying in the sun, we take the time to freeze in non memory the images of this landscape that we will not see again soon …

It’s already time to return to Tecpán … And to plunge into our endless “to-do lists” (unlike the ice cream and shopping, you will surely recognize us all on this last point!) …