We spent last Easter in Antigua, Guatemala (along with about 200,000 other people) in the middle of one of the largest and most extravagant Semana Santa (Holy Week) celebrations in The Americas.
From Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday the cobble stone streets and historic churches of this colonial gem of a town are taken over by dozens of processions take place during all hours of the day and night featuring enormous wooden floats carried by up to 100 people at a time. Toss in vibrant street carpets hand-crafted out of dyed sawdust and flower petals (which are then destroyed under the passing feet of float bearers), special holiday foods and lots and lots of incense and you’ve got yourself one heck of an Easter celebration.
Eric took hundreds of photos during Semana Santa and you can see some of the best of them, and learn more about Semana Santa customs and events, in the full series of Semana Santa posts which we put up on our blog.
This photo, however, captures the essence of Semana Santa as 80 costumed men delicately maneuver a 5,000 pound float over a meticulously created carpet on its way out of incense-filled San Felipe Church. As Easter approaches, we wanted to share it.