San Antonio Polopó

                                               Arriving to San Antonio Palopo

                                                         ütz awäch

   When first arriving to San Antonio Palopo you may be impressed with the friendliness of the people. You might be greeted with smiles and giggles. Often times you will first be approached by vendors who lug around many beautiful textiles with them. 

Several words you can use to say hello are  ütz awäch which means hello in Kaqchikel or Hola which is Spanish.

Children are often curious and sometimes approach a visitor, normally when the visitor greets the children they would respond with a giggle and either run away out of fear or embarrassment. They may say “ Un Quetzal” meaning one Quetzal ( the local currency) or “ Mos., Mos.,” meaning foreigner. They may follow you around town and offer to act as a tour guide.

If a foreign man were to say “hello” to a woman, normally she would glance and say hola which means hello in English. The women in this town are very conservative. Hugs are almost never to be giving when a foreign man first meets a Mayan woman from San Antonio Palopo. They consider this improper behavior, distasteful and disrespectful.  ( Hugs are a normal form of greeting in much of Latin America ) But Mayan communities are the exception!

The men are very friendly and laid-back.  They almost always greet a foreigner with a big smile and curious questions. One could expect to be asked many questions from the locals because they are curios and very respectful. San Antonio Palopo is a very conservative village. Such things as swearing, yelling,  kissing and drinking in public are frowned on.


little mayan girls play


Something that offends almost all locals is when tourist take photos of them without permission. I recommend to never do this!! Especially when someone takes photos of  children. A tourist may not find this harmful but needs to be aware that in the past tourist have been killed because of this. One needs to be aware of the current situation of things to understand this. Sometimes children are kidnapped and never seen again, other times the children are later found with organs removed.  If this happens in any nearby village the people go on alert and are very protective.

Always ask before taking photographs, please don’t be like so many rude tourist who shove there cameras in front of the faces of locals it’s just rude.

This free website was made using Yola.

No HTML skills required. Build your website in minutes.

Go to and sign up today!

Make a free website with Yola