We stayed two nights in Los Gordon in the Casona. It has 2 twin beds that they pushed together and made up as one bed because I requested that in advance. The room was very clean and spacious although the bathroom is very small. A fan kept us comfortable and the setting was nice and quiet. (Other than when a very excited birder was heading out at 2:30 am to see the horned guan. :-) We enjoyed the garden and feeders right outside the room.
I will add our voice to those praising Josue as a birding guide. He is not only personable and speaks English fluently, he knows all the local birds and their songs and calls. One of the best birding guides we have had anywhere!!
We elected not to try for the horned guan because the hike sounded too physically challenging for us, but there were plenty of other birds to keep us happy on the lower trails. We have birded extensively in Central America but saw half a dozen or so lifers. We went out for 3 separate hikes with Josue. We felt the fees were very reasonable, especially considering the very high quality of guiding.
Judging from other reviews, I guess it is very useful if you can write to make your reservation in Spanish. (If you don't speak Spanish, consider using Google Translate.) We got very rapid and useful answers. I let them know in advance that I don't eat meat and the cook was very accommodating about making things to my desires. Like many people who don't know vegetarians, she tended toward meals that were vegetables. I requested a source of protein such as eggs or beans or cheese and the meals became delicious and satisfying. She definitely aims to please. If you have special diet restrictions keep in mind that there are a few English speakers around, including Josue and I'm sure they would be happy to help translate. The home made bread is wonderful. The packed breakfast you can get for early morning walks is very good and super convenient. All servings are huge.
Other reviews mention biting insects. I didn't bother to use any repellent but I ended up with a half a dozen very itchy bites from a kind of black fly (I believe). I guess I should have used some repellent but there were so few bugs around I didn't.
To get there we took a private lancha (boat) across Lake Atitlan from Panajachel. Then we went by micro bus. On the way back we decided to avoid the lake since it can be very rough in the afternoon. So we took a "chicken bus" to Goldones and changed to a micro bus to get to Pana. This is very inexpensive and definitely a cultural experience and a crowded one at that. The nice thing was that Los Tarrales had an employee drive us to the road and flag down the right bus. Without his help it would have been nearly impossible to do as the buses speed by and there are lots of different destinations. We really appreciated the help; it was a final touch on a very nice stay.
- Also Known As:
- Los Tarrales Reserve Guatemala/Western Highlands