Guatemala Part 1: Quetzaltenango

Well I finally made it to Central America! After two long flights and a four hour bus ride I arrived in Quezaltenango (Xela), the second largest city in Guatemala with a population of 152,743*. According to Lonely Planet Xela “tends to attract a more serious type of traveler—people who really want to learn Spanish and then stay around and get involved in the myriad volunteer projects on offer”.
When I got off the airplane I had to move as quickly as possible because if I didn’t make the 12:30 bus I’d have to wait another 2 1/2 hours for the next one. On top of that I’d have to stay at a hotel or hostel in Xela. It’s a looooong bus ride and I was already tired from being on airplanes for the past 12 hours or so. PRO TIP: Consider scheduling a day or two after traveling before starting classes.
I arranged an airport pickup ($10) through the Utatlan Spanish School where I’m studying. Thanks to Alberto’s ninja driving skills we made it through Guatemala City’s nasty traffic, arriving at the terminal with 2 minutes to spare!

In addition to the 1 on 1 Spanish instruction, Utatlan offers various types of activities throughout the week. It’s a great way to meet other travelers from all around the world.
Be sure to follow the hashtag #TravelogueMedia for my latest “Guategrams”.

*2013 data, Lonely Planet

Jason Klarl
Travel Media Producer at Travelogue Media
Jason is the host and producer of the Travelogue Media podcast, and author of Travelogue: 2015 Yearbook. He grew up in Colorado with a passion for music, photography, and filmmaking. He completed an Associates of Applied Science degree from the Art Institute of Colorado and studied at the Center for Documentary Studies in Durham, North Carolina. He's currently living in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala.
Twitter: @mediadesign77

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