Antigua, Guatemala – Guatemala’s former capital

La Antigua Guatemala, „the old Guatemala“ was founded in 1443 and has been the country’s capital for 230 years. It withstood pest epidemics, earthquakes, and ash fall. In the middle of the 18th century 50,000 people lived here. But the devasting earthquake of 1773 completely destroyed the city and the capital was moved to where Guatemala City is still located today. However, Antigua was never abandoned completely and 100 years later the well-directed rebuilding was started, but unfortunately destroyed again by another earthquake in 1976.

Antigua is Guatemala’s neat colonial model town, second large tourist centre besides Lago Atitlán, but not all buildings have been reconstructed. The cathedral was only partially, other churches not rebuilt at all. Palacio de los Capitanes Generales is already aglow with new shine. From here the entire Central America was ruled for 200 years. The Palacio del Noble Ayuntamiento on the opposite side of the green plaza remained mainly undamaged due to its solid method of building. The city where today again 50,000 people live has a manageable size; the surrounding three volcanoes give pretty expression to it. The touristic infrastructure with hotels, shops, cafés, and language and dance schools is perfect.

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