Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Ruta de las Flores

  On Friday, we had the opportunity to drive along Ruta de las Flores and stay the night in the town of Ataco.  People we’ve been meeting here keep telling us about Ataco, a town with colorful murals and good restaurants, and Juayua, with their weekend food festival.  On the winding road from Ahuachapan to Ataco, we trailed behind trucks filled with coffeeberry baskets and workers on their way to or from the plantations.  The higher we climbed, the more flowers we saw along the side of the road. 
  For dinner we ate at El Boton, a French fusion place.  We both had quiche and shared a delicious coconut tart for dessert.  All was good and I recommend the place to those of you heading to Ataco. 
  Our guidebook gave us the impression that Hotel El Balcon was a “luxury” hotel, so at first we were disappointed.  The place is simple and clean, just nowhere close to luxury.  The large windows in the rooms have great views of the town and surrounding mountains.  Considering the price, it ended up being a fine place to stay for one night.

  As is often the case for many travelers, we usually find ourselves to be the first to arrive.  We were the first for dinner at El Boton, the first for breakfast at Entre Nubes Café, and too early for the food vendors in Juayua.  At Entre Nubes we got lucky.  Our diesel car is so loud, the owners heard us waiting outside the gate and let us in.  We had a typical Salvadoreñan breakfast of eggs, plantains, beans, fresh cheese and tortillas, and then walked around the gardens before heading onward. http://www.entrenubescafe.com/

  Just outside of Nahuizalco on the side of the main road we bought two lounge chairs for our tiny apartment terrace.  They are hand-made from durable heavy wood and I love them.

  Driving home on Saturday, we got stuck in traffic in Sonsonate, a town whose population has exceeded its capacity.  I was able to take this picture from the car window while waiting for cars to unblock an intersection.

I look forward to a return trip to Ruta de las Flores.  There is so much more to see!

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