Semana Santa Antigua Guatemala 2015 … Good Friday is done

It’s 8pm and the drums are still going. If you’re looking to sleep during Semana Santa in Antigua Guatemala … you’re looking in the wrong place. At least, our accommodations aren’t in the middle of the preparations or celebrations, but the cymbals and drums are !@$$! annoying, especially since they aren’t very good. This is really the first time, I’ve been here for the entire endgame … since processions and marches will continue till about 3am Saturday morning … so that’s another 7 hours of drumming, cymbals, crucifixion  and noise. Did I really think this through when this guy is only 4 months? Thankfully, he’s been a great travel baby so far.

Mommy and Mitchell (4 months) stylin’ away


At least now I know that the carpets (Alfombras) will be refreshed tomorrow and on Sunday. The start of the morning had tons of questions like …

  • It’s 5am and you haven’t slept … are you insane?
  • Do you know if there will be more carpets?
  • Do you know if there are more parades?
  • Where can we find money?
  • Why is god damn !#$#!$ bank closed today?

Through the entire week, workers refresh the carpets and vigils take place at outdoor altars with decorated sidewalks in front of churches. The fragrance of blossoms mingled with incense smoke wafts through the streets. I would really like to walk through a night procession, to see the torches and candles … thankfully I can pass for a very large foreign based Guate. (That being said … even I have been scammed … Oh Istanbul … I took you for granted) … however I know something has changed since I can’t leave those two people at home by themselves. For all the blood and crucifixion, Easter Sunday morning will shift back to joyous celebrations (i.e. girls back in slutty Latin American wear) as crowds in Sunday-best clothes replace the robed penitents, and parades of floats with the resurrected Christ are heralded by the tones of reggaeton and salsa.

OK! … I made that last piece up … but you get it.

Death = Bad = Sad!

Resurrection= Good = Happy!

Signs you are with an infant and not prepared to photograph Semana Santa

  1. You assumed that you would be on time
  2. You assumed that packing involved your camera bag and a bottle of water
  3. You assumed that the infant would cooperate
  4. You assumed that your wife would make the infant cooperate
  5. You assumed that you could make your wife want to make the infant cooperate
  6. You assumed that a 2 hour time difference would make no difference to anyone mentioned above.

So now that I had all that wrong … here are some of the pictures that I was able to take in between breakfast, nap time,  lunch and bar time.

That was the grand majority of it. As usual, I also managed to take a crappy video of things, for which I’ve included for your upchuck pleasure.

So what did I do when I wasn’t being an amazingly abject travel photographer?

  1. Breakfast at Fernando’s Kaffee
    I highly recommend a breakfast here for a couple reasons

    • They have a great cheap “tipico” breakfast (Two fried eggs, fried plantains, two tortillas and a couple of black beans) for $3USD
    • They have great coffee. This however is not a big deal in Guatemala. There is great coffee everywhere except for the !#$$$! Americans who buy Dunkin’ Donuts coffee here in Antigua.
    • It’s a great place to meet people and possibly get converted to some form of Christianity … and who doesn’t want a little bit of God with their coffee?
    • If you’re expecting some amazing gourmet breakfast … go spend $25USD for brunch at the Westin. However if you’re looking for a great double latte with reasonable food and possibly an English friend … then this is a place for you.
    • 7a Avenida Norte #43 D, Antigua Guatemala
      Phone / Fax:  +502 7832 6953 & +502 5706 2438
      Open from 7:00am to 7:00 pm from Monday to Saturday
      Sundays from 7:00am to 1:00pm
  2. Lunch and a couple drinks at Kafka’s
    Another recommendation after lunch time …

    • Because there won’t be many people there
    • If you get to meet Kevin (the owner), you’ll get an honest view of things in Antigua
    • They have a phenomenal patio for dinner or a drink at Sunset.
    • Did I mention, it’s spacious enough for a crying baby and a tired dad to crash on the couch and fall asleep with no issues?
    • 3ra Calle Poniente No. 4
      +502 7832 7790

Today ensured that I will take my laptop with me everywhere I go from now on … so that I can write something when I feel like it.

About Rishiray

Rishi Sankar is a Cloud HRMS Project Manager/ Solution Architect. Over the past 15+ years, he has managed to combine his overwhelming wanderlust with a desire to stay employed, resulting in continuing stints with 3 major consulting firms (IBM, Deloitte, Accenture). He documents his adventures around the world on "Ah Trini Travelogue" with pictures and stories from the road/tuk-tuk/camel/rickshaw. You can follow him on Twitter at @rishiray and on Facebook at "Ah Trini Travelogue . He doesn't like Chicken Curry but loves Curry Chicken and is always trying to find the perfect Trinidadian roti on the road. He also doesn't like cheese and kittens ... and definitely not together. E-mail from his blog is appreciated like a 35 yr old Balvenie at

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