San Cristóbal El Alto

San Cristóbal El Alto is an aldea in the municipio of Antigua Guatemala and is located approximately 5 kilometers from the Parque Central at an altitude of 1,825 meters (5,990 feet) above sea level, nearly 300 meters (1,000 feet) higher than La Antigua.

Most people in this village are natives who make their livings as farmers. There is a Catholic church in the community, but mass is only held there on special occasions like at Christmas or during Semana Santa. There is also a small village cooperative in the aldea that’s responsible for overseeing the community’s welfare, and it has established a small school that provides education for the little ones and a clinic that’s open on Sundays.
This cooperative consists of a group of residents who are responsible – along with the community’s Deputy Mayor – for ensuring safety and order in the village. There are currently some restaurants operating which offer organic products grown and harvested right there in the village. There are also hotels that in their packages include the option of taking sightseeing excursions which the aldea itself offers to anyone who visits the community, whether they’re Guatemalans or foreign visitors. One of these tours is called “The Esquisúchil Walk,” and it starts at the village and goes all the way to the spring that provides the community with water. For those who like orchids – and especially considering that right now is the major flowering season – there’s also a tour where you can see an almost uncountable number of varieties at the Orchid Sanctuary.
A visit to San Cristóbal El Alto is an enjoyable way to commune with nature, enjoy marvelous views of the Panchoy Valley, and learn more about the efforts of a community that works hard every day to present its visitors with all the best it has to offer.

 

Written by: QP
Traslated by: QP
Photos by: Sofìa Letona

 

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