The Spanish built La Antigua. An earlier settlement was totally destroyed by volcanoes. The present location was also destroyed by volcanoes and earthquakes. At one point, the Spanish ordered the people to evacuate, but they refused and rebuilt the city, sort of. Ruins are in abundance everywhere, old ruins.
La Antigua is a fun town to walk around in; there are lots of good restaurants. The central plaza has an unusual fountain where water squirts from women’s breasts. Volcanoes surround the city. At breakfast, a huge plume of smoke hissed from one of them.
I went on an excursion to Volcán Picaya and hiked up to the lava fields. The hike was straight up. The air was cool from the rain clouds. The lava field itself was hot with plenty of sulfur steam. I poked a stick into the hot lava and it immediately ignited. The soles of my shoes got very hot on some of the rocks. The lava rock is brittle and sharp.
Getting There–Took it easy and traveled in a tourist bus, Hedman Alas from Copan to Guatemala City and to La Antigua. Even so, it took seven hours. From Guatemala City to La Antigua, we were the only ones on the bus.
Lodging–Stayed at Hotel Santa Clara near the Iglesia de Santa Clara. Very comfortable, old courtyard setting with gardens. The front door is a huge door with a smaller entrance door . There is also a smaller window they open when you knock. Quaint. Good hot water.