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Monterrico Guatemala- any opinions?

Monterrico Guatemala- any opinions?

Old Apr 27, 14, 5:07 pm
  #1  
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Monterrico Guatemala- any opinions?

I know a college student that is interested in volunteering near there this summer. The volunteer site would arrange and airport pickup and drop off for her. Her dad is concerned about safety issues. She is not the type to go drinking or head off on a chicken bus. She just wants to improve her Spanish and do some conservation volunteering at a well established organization. She has a pretty cautious nature.

My opinions and experience in Guatemala is now about 6 years old. Does any one have any advice or suggestions?

Thanks.
mules is offline  
Old Apr 27, 14, 6:10 pm
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Monterrico gets a lot of visitors on the weekends -- it's about 90 minutes south of the capital -- but it's pretty quiet during the week. It's also close to the border of El Salvador, so Salvadorans make up a lot of the visitors too. Black-sand beach. Small selection of hotels. This is not Puerto Vallarta by any stretch of the imagination, but it's an interesting little place. It's basically a hot, sweltering little beach town.

I think it's reasonably safe with all the standard precautions. Don't go walking alone on the beach. The few streets, which are really mostly dirt roads, get pretty dark at night, so she shouldn't go walking alone at night. The surfing is good, but, conversely, that means swimming is risky.

If she's doing conservation volunteering, I take it she's working on a project with sea turtles?
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Old Apr 28, 14, 9:45 am
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Thanks for the feedback.

re turtles: That sounds like something related to her major, so tentatively yes.

I think her father is afraid of mugging, kidnapping, drug lord shoot outs, all the things parents worry about...

From you, it sounds like it is not particularly off the beaten path and with some sense could be ok?
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Old Apr 28, 14, 9:58 am
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I think it should be fine with all the proper sensible precautions one takes when traveling.

I want to emphasize again how dark the roads are at night, once you get off the main street.
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Old Apr 28, 14, 6:55 pm
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Monterrico is a very small beach town, as you know. It is traditional in many aspects and that helps with security. Generally, smaller cities in Central America - especially the ones like Monterrico that rely on tourism - do a good job of policing themselves. They know that any hiccup can hurt business. With that said, crime does happen and being a single female walking alone at night can be the catalyst for it. She will need to take obvious precautions.

I know someone who used to have a weekend house down there and they never had problems. Nothing to them or their unattended property.

If the father is worried I would suggest going down and seeing the city first-hand before committing.
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Old Apr 30, 14, 8:16 am
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Thanks everyone. I appreciate the feedback and am passing it on.
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