01 May 2012

Gallivanting in Guatemala: La Merced Church

There is no end to the churches and monasteries in Antigua. The Church and Convent of La Merced was located just about a 5 minutes walk from my hostel, and I decided to visit it while I was there.

The church is still functional: the bright yellow facade definitely stands out. I just marveled at it for a bit, while dodging street performers and a few beggars.

I entered the church and checked it out, but it wasn't too spectacular. The awesome part of this complex isn't the church, but the monastery that is attached to it. I thus exited the church and entered the adjoining monastery, after paying a small fee.

I was perhaps the last visitor for the day: it closes at 5:00 PM, and I think I entered at around 4:30 PM. The lady who had a table of souvenirs was already packing up. Anyway, the sun was already setting down, I think, and so it was a little dark. I entered the dark musty corridors, trying to find the courtyard.

I think this monastery is one of the most preserved: the pillars are still standing and in good condition. Oh, this monastery also has the largest fountain in Antigua, as the following pictures attest to.

Granted, it's a little hard to see how large it is, from ground level. So I decided to find the stairs to get up to the terrace.

I got a little lost on the way. I saw this corridor, and in my opinion, it looked rather new.

The third to the last picture above shows you the scale: there is a man standing near the fountain, so you can see how massive the whole thing is. And the last picture I have I think was the best picture in this set: I like the image of slow-flowing water, gently trickling down.

So by this time, I think I was having a little bit of monastery fatigue. That's a sign that I should be moving soon to a different location. I still have another monastery I visited which I will blog about, but after that, I packed my bags and went forward one more time.

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