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'''Coban''' is a city in [[Alta Verapaz]].
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[[Image:cobansquare.jpg|thumb|Central Square in Coban|300px|right]]
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'''Coban''' is a city in the Alta Verapaz department of the [[Central Highlands]] region of [[Guatemala]].
  
 
==Get in==
 
==Get in==
The most common way to get to Coban is using Monja Blanca bus service from the capital, approximately four hours. There are competitors, as well as more expensive shuttles, too.  A ticket to Coban on the Monja Blanca costs about 50 Quetzales per person (as of 2006).
+
The most common way to get to Coban from Guatemala City is using the Monja Blanca bus service from the capital, approximately four hours. There are also competitors, as well as more expensive shuttles.  A ticket to Coban on the Monja Blanca costs about 55 Quetzales per person (according to January 2012).
 +
 
 +
The real magic is all the villages the spread all over, during the way all the mountains are covered with unbelivable village of the Mayan.
 +
If you look for ome time adventure just ask some local from Coban anout the villages, or in spanish Pueblo like Tactic, tomtem, yoho and you will discover a new world.
 +
 
 +
From the Western Highlands, regular microbuses run from Quiche to Sacapulas to Uspantin to Coban (you will probably have to change buses in each town).  The road between Uspantin and Coban is only paved about half way, and has some rough stretches.  Travel time (in 2010), including time spent waiting for buses, is about 6 hours from Quiche to Coban and 2.5 hours from Uspantan to Coban.
  
 
==Get around==
 
==Get around==
Coban is a relatively walkable city. For local destinations around Coban, there are buses that leave in front of Plaza Magdalena.
+
Coban is a relatively walkable city in terms of size (sidewalk conditions are horrible, however, and you should always assume that cars will take the right of way). For local destinations around Coban, there are buses that leave in front of Plaza Magdalena.
You can take a taxi almost anywhere around town for between Q10 and Q15. Always get in the taxis that are marked with a Taxi number on the door, the unmarked ones are not licensed to work as a taxi.
+
You can take a taxi almost anywhere around town for Q20 for something like 5 Kilometers. Always get in the taxis that are marked with a Taxi number on the door, the unmarked ones are not licensed to work as a taxi.
 +
Another option is to take a bus (collectivo) that start from coban and finish at the nearest villages like Tactic, San cristobal and etc.
  
 
==See==
 
==See==
 +
By walking on the street from the Parque Center to the terminal Market you will fell the Spirit of the Mayan, Workers from the nearest village that surrounding Coban come to the city in the morning to work and leave afternoon.
 +
The people all over, their smile on the morning and Saying hallo at afternoon are the view.
 +
 
the Main Cathedral at the town Center.
 
the Main Cathedral at the town Center.
Semuc Champey about two hours from CobanThere are private tours you can hire to get there.  Check with Hostal d'Acuna or Hostal de Dona Victoria.
+
Semuc Champey about two hours from Coban - There are private tours you can hire to get there that contains also visiting the Caves in lanquin.   
 +
On 1 Avenida there are several tours guide.
 +
 
 +
You don't have to book tours or walk around with your nose buried in your LP guidebook to figure all this out. I
 +
f you want to go to Champey, hop on a colectivo across from Plaza Magdalena (a big yellow shopping mall - everyone knows it, just ask) and go to [[Lanquin]]; get off there, hit up the dudes at El Zapote immediately to your right when you get off for a free ride down to Las Marias hostel, and pay 15Q for a mattress and 15Q for a tour. Simple as that.
  
 
==Do==
 
==Do==
  
 
==Buy==
 
==Buy==
 +
Every Sunday there is a small crafts market in the center of town.  Be sure to offer a lower price or ask what the sellers best price is.  Same goes for the market behind the cathedral.  Take a tour around and buy some of the local clothing.  A Huipil, or women's woven and sometimes embroidered shirt can go for as much as 500 Quetzales / $50 USD or more depending on the quality and detail of the work, so don't be surprised if it seems like a high price for a non-tailored shirt.  More simple styles can be found for about 100 Quetzales.
  
 
==Eat==
 
==Eat==
"De La Abuela" Hotel and restaurant serves traditional dishes and fresh seafood, but their specialty is the meatiest barbecue ribs in Guatemala. <br>
+
"De La Abuela" Hotel and restaurant serves traditional dishes and fresh seafood, but their specialty is the meatiest barbecue ribs in Guatemala. They have outdoor eating areas upstairs and downstairs surrounded by nature, the atmosphere and service are very friendly. <br>
"Al Carbon d'Fiora" serves really good burgers as a local alternative to MacDonalds.  It costs about Q25-Q30 for a burger and about Q60 for Churrasco (grilled steak).  The food is really good and the place is hygienic although the atmosphere is nothing fancy.  Fiora is located on Calle Minerva a few blocks inward (toward downtown) from Plaza Magdalena.
+
 
 +
"Al Carbon d'Fiora" serves really good burgers as a local alternative to MacDonalds.  It costs about Q25-Q30 for a burger and about Q60 for Churrasco (grilled steak).  The food is really good and the place is hygienic although the atmosphere is nothing fancy.  Fiora is on Calle Minerva a few blocks inward (toward downtown) from Plaza Magdalena.
 +
 
 +
*<eat name="Equinoccio " alt="Sandwich shop" address="1era Ave. 2-57, Zona 7" directions="Residenciales Imperial" phone="502-7941-7171" hours="Tu-Sa 11AM-6PM" price="Q30 and less" lat="15° 28' 48.19 N" long="90° 22' 07.80 W">Grilled Panini style sandwiches, Fresh Carrot juice, and salad.  Q30 for the meal and Q23 for the Sandwich ala carte.  They'll be opening a bar/cafe soon. [http://www.equinoccioav.com] </eat>
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 +
*<eat name="El Mesón" alt="Restaurante" address="Km. 207.7 Ruta Guate. - Cobán" directions="a 5 minutos de la ciudad de Cobán" phone="7951-0141" url="www.kaqik.com" hours="7:00 a.m. a 09:00 p.m." price="$5 a $12" lat="" long="">Sells Kaq Ik (Turkey Soup) traditional dish from Alta Verapaz.
 +
The menu has different dishes from grilled lamb, pastas, vegetarian food, delicious coffee and home-made cakes.
 +
Traditional beverages made by Keqchí woman like pure chocolate, tiste and orgeat.</eat>
  
 
==Drink==
 
==Drink==
 +
A new bar called Antick is located two blocks from the centro parque.
 +
The price is cheap and the vibe is very nice, Open all over the week with American and local music like the famous mexican band - Mana.
 +
 +
Near to Antick there is another bar.
 +
All over Coban there are something like 5 bars, 2 disco and 1 Stripping club (according to January 2012)
 +
*<drink name="Equinoccio " alt="Cafe-bar" address="1era Ave. 2-57, Zona 7 (Residenciales imperial)" directions="Get off bus to Canton after crossing the bridge, walk another 1/2 block and it's a hole in the wall entrance on your right" phone="7941-7171" url="www.equinoccioav.com" hours="T-Sa" price="$5-$10" lat="" long="">Really nice restaurant with full bar, great coffee grown locally and roasted in-house, and quality food.  The owners speak English and are fun to talk to.</drink>
 +
  
 
==Sleep==
 
==Sleep==
 
Tourists tend to spend only a night or two in Coban. The most popular place to stay is Casa d'Acuna, which is a relatively inexpensive and reliable hostel. There are a number of other small hotels around the main plaza, though, most of which are comparable in price.
 
Tourists tend to spend only a night or two in Coban. The most popular place to stay is Casa d'Acuna, which is a relatively inexpensive and reliable hostel. There are a number of other small hotels around the main plaza, though, most of which are comparable in price.
  
The newest hotel and restaurant '''De La Abuela''' sits on a hill on the main road as you enter Coban.  Their bedrooms and bungalows can accommodate families and large groups.
+
* The newest hotel and restaurant '''De La Abuela''' sits on a hill on the main road as you enter Coban.  Their bedrooms and bungalows can accommodate families and large groups.
 +
 
 +
*'''La Paz Hotel''' is very pretty, relatively quiet, has a friendly staff and as much security as one could desire; single with private bath is 45Q, a room for three with private Bath cost 110Q (according to 2012). Next to La Paz are the B&B Rooms, a dorm-type affair run by a Mexican-American; low prices, cool ambience. Stay away from the Hotel Familiar, which is filthy (25Q), and especially the Tourist Information Office, which is actually a hotel and restaurant which sells information you don't really need. There are other hotels away from the center but they're hardly worth hunting down for the prices.
 +
 
 +
*'''Los Faroles Hotel''' [http://www.losfaroleshotel.com/] is very beautiful. The service is personalized, welcoming and very friendly, as they strive to make people feel "en Su Casa"  ;).
 +
 
 +
*'''The Park Hotel''' [http://www.parkhotelresort.com] is located 15 minutes south of Coban towards [[Guatemala City]].
 +
*<sleep name="Hostel Misterio Verde" alt="" address="2a Calle 14-36 zona 1, Coban" directions="" phone="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="Q65 per night" lat="" long="">A beautifully run hostel, clean, laid back and very friendly. It has a clean and well equipped kitchen,with purified water, lovely garden and terrace. Washing machine and dryer (Q30 per 3kg load). Restaurant with well-stocked bar and great menu. Wifi and computer access free. Good book store and board games. Thye also have a natural candle making factory, Senor Jose will gladly show you his candle making skills. The candles are scented so the hostel has a lovely aroma. This hostel outstrips all the other hundreds of hostels I have stayed in. A great place to base yourself and visit the myriad of things to do in Alta Verapaz. Check out www.viveroverapaz website for things to do.</sleep>
 +
*<sleep name="Misterio Verde" alt="" address="2a Calle 14-36 zona 1, Coban" directions="near MacDonalds and P^laza Magdelena" phone="(502) 79521047" url="www.misterioverde.com" checkin="" checkout="" price="Q65" lat="" long="">A beautifully run hostel situated near all the towns amenities but far enough away to be QUIET!...bliss. The hostel has a clean and very well-equipped kitchen with purified water outlet. Hot clean showers and beds to die for. Free cable TV and computer acess can be found in the communal lounge along with board games and books. Laundry service and tumble dryer (Q30 per 3 kg load). They can organise trips to the myriad of stunning places to visit in Alta Verapaz (see www.viveroverapaz.com). The restaurant has a great menu and a well-stocked bar. There is a nice subtle aroma, which comes from the scented candle factory in the basement. Jose will be glad to show you his candle making skills.....beautiful gifts for all. This hostel sure beats any of the hundreds of hostels I have stayed in. Don´t miss it.
 +
</sleep>
 +
 
  
 
==Get out==
 
==Get out==
Be Aware: There is no general bus terminal. Although the Monja Blanca station may feel like a terminal, if you are headed to other stations, it is best to ask for walking directions. Travel agencies and Casa d'Acuna also book shuttles, if you prefer not to take chicken buses.
+
Most buses and microbuses use the northern bus terminal, located about 1.5 km from the city centre, rather than the Monja Blanca station. Travel agencies and Casa d'Acuna will book shuttles.
  
 +
The best tip is to ask the locals and try the locals way.
 +
They work very well and fast, of course it will be cheaper that the regular way.
 
{{outline}}
 
{{outline}}
{{IsIn|Alta_Verapaz}}
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{{isPartOf|Central Highlands (Guatemala)}}

Revision as of 01:35, 10 January 2013

Central Square in Coban

Coban is a city in the Alta Verapaz department of the Central Highlands region of Guatemala.

Contents

Get in

The most common way to get to Coban from Guatemala City is using the Monja Blanca bus service from the capital, approximately four hours. There are also competitors, as well as more expensive shuttles. A ticket to Coban on the Monja Blanca costs about 55 Quetzales per person (according to January 2012).

The real magic is all the villages the spread all over, during the way all the mountains are covered with unbelivable village of the Mayan. If you look for ome time adventure just ask some local from Coban anout the villages, or in spanish Pueblo like Tactic, tomtem, yoho and you will discover a new world.

From the Western Highlands, regular microbuses run from Quiche to Sacapulas to Uspantin to Coban (you will probably have to change buses in each town). The road between Uspantin and Coban is only paved about half way, and has some rough stretches. Travel time (in 2010), including time spent waiting for buses, is about 6 hours from Quiche to Coban and 2.5 hours from Uspantan to Coban.

Get around

Coban is a relatively walkable city in terms of size (sidewalk conditions are horrible, however, and you should always assume that cars will take the right of way). For local destinations around Coban, there are buses that leave in front of Plaza Magdalena. You can take a taxi almost anywhere around town for Q20 for something like 5 Kilometers. Always get in the taxis that are marked with a Taxi number on the door, the unmarked ones are not licensed to work as a taxi. Another option is to take a bus (collectivo) that start from coban and finish at the nearest villages like Tactic, San cristobal and etc.

See

By walking on the street from the Parque Center to the terminal Market you will fell the Spirit of the Mayan, Workers from the nearest village that surrounding Coban come to the city in the morning to work and leave afternoon. The people all over, their smile on the morning and Saying hallo at afternoon are the view.

the Main Cathedral at the town Center. Semuc Champey about two hours from Coban - There are private tours you can hire to get there that contains also visiting the Caves in lanquin. On 1 Avenida there are several tours guide.

You don't have to book tours or walk around with your nose buried in your LP guidebook to figure all this out. I f you want to go to Champey, hop on a colectivo across from Plaza Magdalena (a big yellow shopping mall - everyone knows it, just ask) and go to Lanquin; get off there, hit up the dudes at El Zapote immediately to your right when you get off for a free ride down to Las Marias hostel, and pay 15Q for a mattress and 15Q for a tour. Simple as that.

Do

Buy

Every Sunday there is a small crafts market in the center of town. Be sure to offer a lower price or ask what the sellers best price is. Same goes for the market behind the cathedral. Take a tour around and buy some of the local clothing. A Huipil, or women's woven and sometimes embroidered shirt can go for as much as 500 Quetzales / $50 USD or more depending on the quality and detail of the work, so don't be surprised if it seems like a high price for a non-tailored shirt. More simple styles can be found for about 100 Quetzales.

Eat

"De La Abuela" Hotel and restaurant serves traditional dishes and fresh seafood, but their specialty is the meatiest barbecue ribs in Guatemala. They have outdoor eating areas upstairs and downstairs surrounded by nature, the atmosphere and service are very friendly.

"Al Carbon d'Fiora" serves really good burgers as a local alternative to MacDonalds. It costs about Q25-Q30 for a burger and about Q60 for Churrasco (grilled steak). The food is really good and the place is hygienic although the atmosphere is nothing fancy. Fiora is on Calle Minerva a few blocks inward (toward downtown) from Plaza Magdalena.

  • Equinoccio (Sandwich shop), 1era Ave. 2-57, Zona 7 (Residenciales Imperial), 502-7941-7171. Tu-Sa 11AM-6PM. Grilled Panini style sandwiches, Fresh Carrot juice, and salad. Q30 for the meal and Q23 for the Sandwich ala carte. They'll be opening a bar/cafe soon. [1] Q30 and less. (15° 28' 48.19 N,90° 22' 07.80 W)
  • El Mesón (Restaurante), Km. 207.7 Ruta Guate. - Cobán (a 5 minutos de la ciudad de Cobán), 7951-0141, [2]. 7:00 a.m. a 09:00 p.m.. Sells Kaq Ik (Turkey Soup) traditional dish from Alta Verapaz. The menu has different dishes from grilled lamb, pastas, vegetarian food, delicious coffee and home-made cakes. Traditional beverages made by Keqchí woman like pure chocolate, tiste and orgeat. $5 a $12.

Drink

A new bar called Antick is located two blocks from the centro parque. The price is cheap and the vibe is very nice, Open all over the week with American and local music like the famous mexican band - Mana.

Near to Antick there is another bar. All over Coban there are something like 5 bars, 2 disco and 1 Stripping club (according to January 2012)

  • Equinoccio (Cafe-bar), 1era Ave. 2-57, Zona 7 (Residenciales imperial) (Get off bus to Canton after crossing the bridge, walk another 1/2 block and it's a hole in the wall entrance on your right), 7941-7171, [3]. T-Sa. Really nice restaurant with full bar, great coffee grown locally and roasted in-house, and quality food. The owners speak English and are fun to talk to. $5-$10.


Sleep

Tourists tend to spend only a night or two in Coban. The most popular place to stay is Casa d'Acuna, which is a relatively inexpensive and reliable hostel. There are a number of other small hotels around the main plaza, though, most of which are comparable in price.

  • The newest hotel and restaurant De La Abuela sits on a hill on the main road as you enter Coban. Their bedrooms and bungalows can accommodate families and large groups.
  • La Paz Hotel is very pretty, relatively quiet, has a friendly staff and as much security as one could desire; single with private bath is 45Q, a room for three with private Bath cost 110Q (according to 2012). Next to La Paz are the B&B Rooms, a dorm-type affair run by a Mexican-American; low prices, cool ambience. Stay away from the Hotel Familiar, which is filthy (25Q), and especially the Tourist Information Office, which is actually a hotel and restaurant which sells information you don't really need. There are other hotels away from the center but they're hardly worth hunting down for the prices.
  • Los Faroles Hotel [4] is very beautiful. The service is personalized, welcoming and very friendly, as they strive to make people feel "en Su Casa"  ;).
  • The Park Hotel [5] is located 15 minutes south of Coban towards Guatemala City.
  • Hostel Misterio Verde, 2a Calle 14-36 zona 1, Coban. A beautifully run hostel, clean, laid back and very friendly. It has a clean and well equipped kitchen,with purified water, lovely garden and terrace. Washing machine and dryer (Q30 per 3kg load). Restaurant with well-stocked bar and great menu. Wifi and computer access free. Good book store and board games. Thye also have a natural candle making factory, Senor Jose will gladly show you his candle making skills. The candles are scented so the hostel has a lovely aroma. This hostel outstrips all the other hundreds of hostels I have stayed in. A great place to base yourself and visit the myriad of things to do in Alta Verapaz. Check out www.viveroverapaz website for things to do. Q65 per night.
  • Misterio Verde, 2a Calle 14-36 zona 1, Coban (near MacDonalds and P^laza Magdelena), (502) 79521047, [6]. A beautifully run hostel situated near all the towns amenities but far enough away to be QUIET!...bliss. The hostel has a clean and very well-equipped kitchen with purified water outlet. Hot clean showers and beds to die for. Free cable TV and computer acess can be found in the communal lounge along with board games and books. Laundry service and tumble dryer (Q30 per 3 kg load). They can organise trips to the myriad of stunning places to visit in Alta Verapaz (see www.viveroverapaz.com). The restaurant has a great menu and a well-stocked bar. There is a nice subtle aroma, which comes from the scented candle factory in the basement. Jose will be glad to show you his candle making skills.....beautiful gifts for all. This hostel sure beats any of the hundreds of hostels I have stayed in. Don´t miss it. Q65.


Get out

Most buses and microbuses use the northern bus terminal, located about 1.5 km from the city centre, rather than the Monja Blanca station. Travel agencies and Casa d'Acuna will book shuttles.

The best tip is to ask the locals and try the locals way. They work very well and fast, of course it will be cheaper that the regular way.

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