Time to leave Panajachel and go across the lago for a few days at La Casa del Mundo, a multi-tiered hotel with cabins snuggled up against the hillside, between the villages of El Jaibalito and Santa Cruz La Laguna. The launcha is full of locals, indigenous peoples of the area.
The boat flies, sprays of churning water shooting out! Rain pelts the launcha for a few minutes and a colorful yellow tarp is pulled down, somewhat shielding the front row.
The ferry pulls up to the private dock and we’re told to leave the two heavy cases, someone would bring them up to our room. It’s about 75 steps up to the main building/dining room. We come too late for breakfast, but are able to order snacks from the menu. Two men with our suitcases on their backs go by, nimbly hopping up the steps like mountain goats! We slowly walk another 75 steps up to our room and run into Bill, the owner, along the way. It took him nine years to construct the first four rooms to rent out. He was working elsewhere and spent his time off building his vision. Now, there are 17 rooms with breathtaking views, each with its own unique personality!
Our room is like a charming little treehouse cabin. The views in two directions are spectacular! It’s been updated and has a shiny stainless steel bathroom sink.
Not wanting to waste time, we visit San Juan La Laguna. Its dock comes before San Pedro La Laguna, but if you get off, it costs Q5 more! We look around and decide to take a tuk-tuk over to San Pedro. There are lovely weavings that I haven’t seen in Panajachel or elsewhere in Guatemala. The works are more intricate, with different textures.
We wander further down to the water and have a great view from the second story Dolphin Cafe & Restaurante. The owner, Memeta, nicknamed the “Dolphin,” serves us a delicious pizza before walking us down to the dock and making sure the launcha captain doesn’t over-charge us. p.s.: Their restroom is really clean!
Back at the casa, we are thrilled with the views of lake, volcanoes and blue skies!
Dinner is a communal affair. We laugh when we meet our closest tablemates and learn that both couples are from Houston! Making friends at a candlelit meal with a big table is good. Everyone has stories to tell!