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Flores — the Perfect Island to Start off Your Guatemalan Adventure

But make sure you book a place on the island itself to avoid sleeping with the ants!

By Sh*t Happens - Lost Girl TravelPublished 2 months ago 3 min read
Top Story - October 2023
The adorable island of Flores (Photo credit to the author)

Our first stop in Guatemala was Flores, an adorable little island on a lake. Flores serves as the stopping-off point for visiting the famous Mayan temple of Tikal.

Flores means flowers. How cute is that?! Even cuter was the island itself, it lived up to its name with pink-covered trellises everywhere.

My favourite thing to do in Flores was renting a kayak. We rowed across the lake to this great little swimming spot with a rope swing. Here we spent the day chilling out and swimming.

I was lucky enough to spot two big male iguanas in the trees, glowing orange in mating season. Watching them scamper up and down trees whilst I floated in the water was perfection. Joe was happy releasing his inner Tarzan, swinging from the rope swing and splashing into the water. We were lucky enough to bask in the sunset as we kayaked back.

The sunsets were lovely here. On other nights we enjoyed them from rooftop bars.

The island is lovely and I would recommend staying there. Unfortunately for us, we weren’t actually staying on the island…

We made a bit of a travel booboo. We accidentally booked a room that was within the “Flores Province” but not actually on the island itself. It was across the shore from Flores, and so close, yet so far. Whoops!

In our defence, that fact wasn’t made clear on booking.com.

Our hotel could only be reached by boat. Before you start thinking this sounds quite quaint and romantic, it wasn’t. The boat gave us a 9 p.m. curfew, so we didn’t get to fully enjoy the lovely Flores nightlife. To add insult to injury, the accommodation didn’t have a bar or restaurant, and there weren’t any nearby, so we had to just sit in our room. Fun, right?

To make our sad little evenings even worse, one night we arrived back to a river of ants running along the path to our door. They were all flowing down the door like a waterfall.

A second into us tilting our heads to the side and staring at the door, my legs leaped up into an impromptu Irish jig.

“Ow! Ow! Ow!”

The ants were in attack mode, stinging our feet!

Yelping we opened the door and stumbled into the full horror scene. Our room was smothered in a black blanket of ants. And I’m not exaggerating here, we could barely see the floor, and our clothes and our backpacks were covered.

We hopped and skipped back over the ants to run and find the manager and ask what the hell we should do. He said that this happens sometimes when it rains. The heavy rain flooded the ant’s nest and flushed them out. Now they were in search of a new home. I hoped that our backpacks weren’t going to be their new forever home!

He moved us to another room for the night and promised that the ants would have moved on by the morning. Thank God he was right.

I guess the one nice thing about where we were staying was that it wasn’t too far from a viewpoint. We climbed to the top of a tower. Here we looked out across the lake and saw the whole island from a different viewpoint.

On the woodland path home, we were cracking jokes, reminiscing about the ants, and Tikal, and singing Beatles songs.

In this moment we got to bask in the joy of starting another adventure in a new country, mistakes and all.

Thank you for reading! Hearts and tips are always welcome, and your support is very much appreciated.

This story was originally published on Medium

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About the Creator

Sh*t Happens - Lost Girl Travel

Hi! I’m Georgie and I share travel stories of when sh*t happens. I think that sometimes the worst things that happen to you traveling, are often the funniest

Follow me on Instagram! https://www.instagram.com/sh.t_happens_lost_girl_travel/

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Comments (9)

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  • Christineabout a month ago

    Thts scary

  • Wow, I cannot imagine the ant flood, it must have been terrifying and horrible at the same time. Like a bad dream. Glad it got solved by morning. Definitely a trip to remember :)

  • Babs Iverson2 months ago

    Knowing how painful fireant bits are, I would have have been screaming and crying 😢 Loved your wander story!!! Your description of Flores sounds fantastic. ❤️❤️💕 Now, if I go, know to book accommodations on the island.

  • Donna Renee2 months ago

    Omg the ants!! 🫣🫣🫣🫣 I’m glad it worked out for you!!

  • Naveed2 months ago

    Congratulations on your Top Story,

  • Rachel Deeming2 months ago

    Ants. An invading army. I tell you, if they get themselves organised, we're in trouble. For something other than foraging, I mean. They're pretty organised at that. Enjoyed reading this.

  • Alex H Mittelman 2 months ago

    Great work! Congrats

  • At least they weren't bedbugs, lol. We once stayed at a hotel on the north side of St. Louis where our room was full of bedbugs. In the morning, we mentioned this to the manager who promised they would treat the room that day & asked if we wanted to be moved to a different room. I responded that if they were bombing the room, while killing most of the bugs, those which survived would move onto safer environs & that it would likely be the cleanest room in the place. We opened up our luggage that it might enjoy the treatment & went about doing what we had scheduled for the day. Only they didn't get around to bombing the room. Nor did they inform us of this. After two nights of malicious biting, we moved to a different room for our final night. It was covered in ants. But they didn't bite. And they weren't bedbugs.

  • C. H. Richard2 months ago

    Omg I would have freaked out with the ants Flores sounds beautiful though. Love your travel adventures. Makes me want to go to these places. ❤️

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