Antigua Travel Tips
Historical Beauty near Antigua Vacation Rentals
Antigua is a city known for its beautiful Spanish colonial architecture. In almost every part of city, there are magnificent churches, stately homes, and ancient and ornate facades. Even in the places where the architecture has been reduced to ruins as a result of earthquakes, there is still an air of former elegance. Visitors with an architectural or historical interest will love visiting Antigua where they can meander the streets and marvel at the city sights. Antigua is also a city rich with traditions and culture. When visiting the city, you'll find its cultural charm is captivating. Travelers who enjoy browsing through colorful markets for handcrafts will love the artisan stalls and beautiful, handcrafted items that represent age old Antiguan traditions.
Best Time of Year to Stay at Antigua Vacation Houses
Antigua is located in a highland valley and has a mild and temperate climate. The warmest months are April and May when temperatures average between 68 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit. April is also the start of the rainy season which tends to last until November. The dry season is between December and April. The majority of travelers come to Antigua in the dry season as the temperatures are still warm; getting around to sightsee is more pleasant in the dryer months.
Benefits of Renting Homes in Antigua
While Antigua is a beautiful city, it is a place where you need to be a little cautious. Tourists are often targets for theft and pickpocketing. Renting a vacation home in Antigua will give you an opportunity to mix with the locals and blend in. You won’t be hanging around hotel lobbies and advertising that you’re a foreigner. Many rental apartments are located close to the major tourist sites. This means you can get around easily using local transport. Most of the locals are friendly and will assist you in getting fresh produce from the markets or pointing you in the direction of the local grocer. It does help to be able to speak a bit of Spanish as that will make getting around much easier. The vacation homes in Antigua are characterized by the culture of the city and you can expect colorful vibrant décor and warm hospitality. Most are well equipped, providing you with a comfortable haven in a bustling city.
Must-See Attractions in Antigua
The Central Park or Plaza Mayor is at the very heart of the city. Beautiful landscaped gardens have paved walkways that expand in concentric circles and wind their way through tall trees. There are benches for sitting and people watching. The park is a popular leisure spot for the local Antiguans during the day. A fountain is at the center of the park. At night, the trees are often lit up with lights but visitors should exercise caution about hanging around the park after dark on their own. Surrounding the park are several majestic historic buildings which house the city hall and police office, the Inguat Tourist Agency and several smaller tourist-related stores, the city’s main banks and the magnificent cathedral.
If you would like to get a view of the city, follow the trail that runs up from the central park to the Cerro de la Cruz. This is a large cross located on a prominent hill just to the north of the city. The tourist police lead a free walk up to the cross twice daily and this is the best option for visitors. The walk is moderately strenuous and takes approximately 30 minutes each way. Once up on the hill, you can enjoy spectacular views over the city.
Guided cultural walking tours are great ways to learn about the history and culture of Antigua. The city lies in an earthquake zone and because of this, some of the city’s prominent historical sites are tumbled ruins. They are nevertheless still beautiful and if you catch the light just right, you can get some excellent photographs.