First Impressions of Fronteras

Wednesday June 26, 2013

Fronteras, Guatemala

We had a great time getting settled into our marina last night, and I think we’re really going to like it here. A lot. While sipping cold Gallos at the marinas bar the previous night, Luki and Elmarie told us a little bit about the small town of Fronteras that we were neighboring, and asked if we’d like a tour of it the next day. We had no idea where it was, how to get there, or what to expect, so we gladly accepted their offer. We made plans to go in the next morning bright at early at 7 am (huh….? I’m on vacation here!) by walking the road between the marina and town, and take the marina’s 9:00 lancha back on the water. So at 6:50 we had our backpacks strapped on our backs and set off under overcast skies. The first road we came to out of the marina was filled with a forest of tall green trees on each side, something we had not seen for months. I thought of what a great running path this would be…if I were a runner.

After a half a mile, the trees gave way to small shacks and run down buildings. I asked Luki if this was the beginning of the town, and he nodded that, yes, we were starting to enter the town. Not thinking that the town of Rio Dulce/Fronteras would be much of anything, I kind of nodded back, thinking to myself ‘Ok, just a couple of shacks here and there, hopefully we won’t need much during our stay here besides food, although I know Matt was at least hoping for some kind of hardware store’. We stopped in a very small bakery for some bread and rolls, the total cost for the four of us, about $2. Wha?! Two loaves of bread and four sugary rolls for $2? This place might work out. We continued in and out of a few more shops on that road as Luki searched for a replacement electronic part for his boat and I thought we’d basically seen the whole town, when we came up to an intersection in the road. In front of me were fresh produce markets, about six different fast food chicken restaurants, clothing stands, and much more. What I thought had been the town of Fronteras was just a side street leading up to it!

Now that we were on the main road, we were shown a small marine store, and then went to the ‘concrete mall’. Basically a small concrete strip mall that housed a couple of hardware shops, paint stores, and just the general parts section of town. We browsed through the hardware store where Matt was excited to see they had a lot of the things he would need for projects, and if not, the neighboring town of Morales, about a 30 minute bus ride away, should. So that was the part about town that got Matt all geeked out. For me, it was the food. Our next stop was the Dispensa Familiar, the town’s Walmart owned grocery store. Inside was a wide variety of food, and at cheap prices. Getting some of the basics we stocked up on break, milk, cereal, and pop. All our favorites. Ok, plus some chicken so I could make a real meal for dinner. Did I mention that we could get a 3.3 liter of the local soda for $1. Seriously the highlight of our day. But it gets better. While making our way down the main street towards the water and where the lancha would eventually pick us up, we made a stop at one of the produce stands, full of fresh fruits and vegetables that had just been put out that day. Filling up the plastic bags they have hanging above the stands, we grabbed lettuce, apples, grapes and nectarines, and the cost upon check-out? $4. I don’t think I will have any problem living here for the next 4-5 months.

dock gang plank

How we have to get on and off our boat everyday now.

lanchas in Fronteras

Waiting for our lancha to pick us up.

bathing in Rio DulceGot to watch a few guys take their bath in the river.

6.26.13 (2)Our ride back to the marina.




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