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Affordable options make Antigua, Guatemala, a budget traveler’s favorite

GUATEMALA-ECONOMY-CONFERENCE
In the driver’s seat of a one-horsepower vehicle in Antigua, Guatemala.
(Johan Ordonez/ AFP/Getty Images)

I enjoyed the Antigua article (“Child’s Play in Antigua,” by Cindy Carcamo, May 26) as it’s been one of my favorite cities for 30 years.

However, the lodging and dining experiences are a bit misleading. A fine colonial hotel, often a converted mansion or villa, is available for $50 for a double room. Posada los Bûcaros comes to mind, as well as a dozen more fine inns in locations convenient to the main square.

Dining choices are exceptional, with meals in the $6-10 dinner range. It’s one reason so many young travelers choose Antigua for Spanish immersion and historic value.

Because Guatemala City has little to offer, I’ve always booked a shuttle from La Aurora airport, a convenient one-hour ride direct to your hotel in Antigua, a UNESCO World Heritage site everyone should consider. And from LAX, several airlines have five-hour nonstop flights, making it convenient. It’s not the first time you’ve featured the Highlands, and I thank you for that. A real undiscovered country.

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Richard Martin

Irvine

More Abbey

Thank Christopher Reynolds for his fine piece about Edward Abbey (“Chasing After Edward Abbey,” May 19): I encountered Abbey’s book, “Desert Solitaire,” in a college town bookstore about 45 years ago. I had read John Muir and others about the Sierra and thought, here is an interesting book. I read it and didn’t like it. And yet, over the decades, I’ve read it again and again, infelicities and all (cleansed in his 1988 “terminal” edition; read it if you haven’t). It’s one of my favorite books.

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I first drove through Moab, Utah, in September 1980, moving back to California for my second job after school. On Interstate 70 I noticed Utah 128 on the map and said, “Let’s go this way.” I was startled to cross the Colorado River on a 15 mph, one-lane wood-plank bridge. I recall the winding highway south through Blanding, Mexican Hat and on. A half-decade later, I drove north on the same highway, and yet very different — straighter, faster. What did Abbey write about heavy machinery and the most singular, angular landscapes?

Bob Wieting

Simi Valley

travel@latimes.com

@latimestravel


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