If you’ve been wanting to visit Lake Atitlan but are concerned about the news of demonstrations, stop worrying and start making plans.
The indigenous Mayans have been demonstrating for decent education, healthcare, and economic opportunities. They blocked roads throughout the country for many weeks, while expats cheered them on, hoping they’ll get the democracy they deserve.
Here’s a great article with an awesome photo: https://znetwork.org/znetarticle/an-uprising-for-democracy-in-guatemala/.
They recently opened the roads, and demonstrations are now solely held at government buildings in Guatemala City. But has life returned to normal? No, and it won’t until you come for a visit.
Truth is, the Lake Atitlan Mayans need you. They endured hardships over the past months to fight for the democracy they deserve. But now that the roads are open, is it back to normal? No. Due to vague, untrue warnings in mainstream news (and US State Dept.), there are almost no tourists.
If you’re a local Mayan, that means there’s no one in your restaurant, hotel, or taxi. This is hardship on top of hardship in a hand-to-mouth life.
The airport, roads, hotels, and restaurants are open. Despite the vague warnings it is indeed safe, (is this where I remind you to not flaunt wealth in public or compare the low crime rate here to other tourist spots?). Just read the factual reports about the demonstrations, and then consider this: the people need you.
We visited San Pedro’s Marco Polo for an ice cream cone yesterday, and the owner almost begged us to write this post. As we walked home along the lake, taking it all in and uplifted by the lake’s energy, we promised we’d tell you …
(Photo compliments of znetwork.org)