CEO of Growmotely
I'm not the kind of traveler who just sticks to big cities. As a digital nomad, I'm not necessarily looking for typical tourist attractions. The connections I make while traveling usually take me to my next destination. While attending the DLD Innovation festival in Israel, I learned about Antigua from a few Guatemalans I met there, including the founder of the Good Hotel, which invests all its profits into local community projects. Their team was working on a restoration project in Antigua, which enticed me to explore this city. Antigua is a beautiful and bustling destination. You never know what you'll find behind its secret doorways and alleyways. I love venturing to one of the biggest markets in the city, underneath the famous Arco de Santa Catalina, and studying the handmade art and crafts of this multi-ethnic country. The local culture is vivid and full of life, with brightly colored traditional clothing and a welcoming spirit.
For me, the best part of traveling is connecting with people. I usually choose to stay in coliving spaces. I rise early, grab a coffee, and take a moment to myself before starting work. I might attend a yoga class or a networking event after that. There is usually always something happening in the city. Coming here during the annual Volcano Innovation Summit is a great way to meet the leaders creating a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem in Guatemala. This, and similar events in Antigua offer a platform for people to exchange ideas, explore how the world is changing, and how the digital nomad community can contribute to local economies in a more connected global world.
Antigua is fun to explore, and you can start with a few of my favorite spots. The Saul Bistro next to the Good Hotel does a brilliant breakfast, while Selina is great for both coworking & coliving. Samsara was one of my regular stops for great vegetarian food - try their quinoa croquettes and tempeh stir fry! The vegan/vegetarian restaurant scene is rapidly growing in the city. Wachuma is another favorite among digital nomads with its vegan burgers and healthy smoothies. You’ll find several cafes serving great-quality coffee in the city as well. While the cost of living in Antigua is much higher than in the rest of Guatemala, especially the apartment rentals, it’s still more affordable than in most of the United States and Europe.
I ended my last trip to Antigua by spending 4 days at Lake Atitlan and I’m eager to go back. In the company of my friends, we plan on staying near the lake and coworking together. You can rent a boat to take you to the lovely villages surrounding the lake, like San Marcos, and even hike up an active volcano. Hotel Lush is situated by the lake, with an amazing vegan restaurant we stopped by after our boat trip. Start your trip in Antigua, but make sure to venture outside of the city and explore the incredibly diverse nature of Guatemala.