Final Up to date on 22 June 2020
Lake Atitlan, Guatemala is solely superb! There are quite a few mountaineering alternatives, beautiful views, spectacular villages to find, and extra, and this 7-day Lake Atitlan itinerary presents you one of the best issues to do at Lake Atitlan in a single week.
There are many villages to go to in your journey to Lake Atitlan, Guatemala and all of them will provide you with the chance to be taught extra concerning the Mayan tradition, to calm down, and to spend extra time out of doors. The truth is, there are numerous the explanation why it is best to go to Guatemala!
There may be additionally a village that’s good for nightlife – so in your Lake Atitlan 7-day itinerary may have all of it: rest, journey, breathtaking views, cultural enrichment, and enjoyable!
Uncover what to do in 7 days at Lake Atitlan from Dean and Laynni’s of Routinely Nomadic Lake Atitlan itinerary full of suggestions and tips to make your Lake Atitlan trip an unforgettable one!
You’ll even have suggestions for excellent eating places and motels in Lake Atitlan, in addition to prices so as to higher put together on your journey! That is the final word Lake Atitlan information!
This itinerary is a part of our free locations guides and itineraries sequence on this weblog.
7-day Lake Atitlan itinerary
Lake Atitlan – a shocking crater lake surrounded by hills and volcanoes that appears superb from each angle.
It’s situated within the highlands of Guatemala and due to its delicate year-round temperatures is sometimes called “the land of everlasting spring”. It’s, due to this fact, no shock you can spend a tremendous week in Lake Atitlan!
Lake Atitlan climate – one of the best time to go to Lake Atitlan, Guatemala
The primary factor on this Lake Atitlan information is one of the best time to go to the place.
The wet season runs from April to November and brings vibrant flowers and superb sunsets, whereas the extra widespread dry season is from December to March and options persistently sunny days.
What number of days to go to Lake Atitlan, Guatemala
You have to at the very least per week on the Lake Atitlan to essentially do it justice. It’s best to spend time within the totally different Mayan villages, every with their very own particular person taste and tradition.
The native Mayan ladies take pleasure of their historically embroidered skirts, tops, and belts, and every village has its personal particular colors and patterns.
There are three totally different Mayan languages spoken across the lake, whereas everybody additionally learns Spanish in class as their second language.
This Lake Atitlan Guatemala itinerary for one week contains the next:
Santa Cruz la Laguna – 2 nights
San Marcos la Laguna – three nights
- dawn paddleboard
- hike to Rostro Maya
- village boat tour
- Cerro Tzankujil Nature Reserve
San Pedro la Laguna
- climb Volcan San Pedro
- village of San Juan la Laguna
Santa Cruz la Laguna
The beautiful little village of Santa Cruz is a superb place to start out your week in Lake Atitlan.
It’s half-way between Panajachel (Pana) and San Marcos la Laguna and may solely be accessed by boat (there’s a small highway that is available in from the highest of the crater however it’s inconvenient and barely used).
The boat journey from Pana ought to value 10 quetzales (also referred to as “Q”, roughly $US1.30) and boats (referred to as “lanchas”) go away each 20 minutes. It’s all the time greatest to have precise change.
The views from Santa Cruz’s picturesque bay are among the many greatest on all the lake, with unobscured seems to be in any respect three volcanoes looming on the far aspect (San Pedro, Toliman, and Atitlan).
Whereas the majority of the city is farther up the hill, virtually all of the buildings alongside the lake are owned by long-term expats who went searching for someplace lovely, quiet, and secluded and located all three in Santa Cruz.
There are solely a pair eating places and motels in Santa Cruz la Laguna which is sensible as it is a good, quiet place to calm down on your first two nights.
Iguana Perdida is a superb, inexpensive place for a room and a meal.
There’s a weekly market and Santa Cruz is the one place on the lake the place you may scuba dive (though the websites are thought-about pretty mediocre).
Hike from Santa Cruz to Tzununa
A must-do on your one full day in Santa Cruz is the favored hike from there to Tzununa. It follows previous paths alongside the lake between villages which can be nonetheless utilized by locals.
The path has superb views of the lake and its volcanoes however bear in mind that there are some steep drop-offs so you should be regular in your ft. It may simply be completed with no information though there may be an unlucky historical past of armed robberies alongside this path.
You’ll be able to both rent a information or just journey in a gaggle and keep away from carrying any valuables. The hike ought to take round 2 hours and has a few steep ups and downs.
You’ll be able to simply catch a ship again to Santa Cruz from the Tzununa public dock for 10Q. Avid hikers can discover the main points of this and 15 extra hikes in our information to mountaineering on Lake Atitlan.
San Marcos la Laguna
After 2 nights in Santa Cruz it’s time to transfer on to San Marcos for the three nights of your 7 days at Lake Atitlan. As it may be fairly noisy within the village we might suggest one of many attractive residences at Pasaj-cap Leases.
San Marcos la Laguna – sundown from Pasaj-cap
A 15-minute stroll or 10Q tuk-tuk journey from San Marcos, it options commanding views of the volcanoes and plush, expansive grounds.
If you’re coming by boat from Santa Cruz you could be let off at their personal dock for 15Q. And if you wish to keep longer they provide glorious month-to-month charges.
The village of San Marcos is famend for its hippie tradition however the general vibe stays very pleasant and welcoming, with folks of all non secular and hygienic persuasions co-existing comfortably.
There are a selection of fine eating places, a bevy of pleasant vegetable distributors, and a number of other small outlets the place you may choose up many of the principal staples.
Don’t come right here for the nightlife, nonetheless, as most eating places gained’t serve meals after 9:30 pm, and outdoors of the occasional particular occasion (i.e. dwell music, midnight seance), your late-night choices are principally non-existent.
If you’re a morning particular person, one of the best factor to do in San Marcos is a dawn paddleboard with Venga Atitlan Outside Adventures. This is likely one of the greatest issues to do in San Marcos and also you’ll see why I’m recommending it on this 7 days itinerary for Lake Atitlan.
San Marcos la Laguna
Floating on the calm water watching the solar come as much as illuminate the volcanoes is a very memorable expertise.
And even when dawn is simply too early for you there are a few locations that hire kayaks and paddleboards all through the day. A tip is to go as early as attainable because the lake tends to get rougher by the afternoon.
One other early morning tour is the hike to Rostro Maya. It is a hike as much as the ridge of the caldera with views overlooking the entire lake. It’s top-of-the-line issues to do in San Marcos la Laguna in your journey to Lake Atitlan in Guatemala.
This hike begins within the village of San Juan la Laguna and takes most individuals between 1 1/2 to 2 hours to succeed in the highest and barely much less to get again down.
Nevertheless, this path is usually uncovered, which signifies that except you go at dawn count on it to be highly regarded.
Guides don’t value a lot and can assist you to keep away from the entrepreneurial farmers charging entry charges alongside the best way (along with the official 20Q price to enter the park).
In case you don’t need to hike the entire distance you may take native transport as much as the highest and have a brief hike from there, or be a part of a tour that may organize the transport and information for you.
One other good tour is a village boat tour.
Together with scenic views cruising across the lake, additionally, you will get an opportunity to see a number of the much less widespread however nonetheless fascinating places resembling Santiago Atitlan, San Lucas Toliman, pottery-haven San Antonio Palopo and vibrant Santa Catarina Palopo.
The remainder of your two days in San Marcos of your week in Lake Atitlan Guatemala could be stuffed with any of the varied choices for yoga, holistic medication, therapeutic massage, non secular gatherings, meditation, and enlightenment coaching. There are discover boards across the village displaying all the chances.
An alternative choice is to go to the Cerro Tzankujil Nature Reserve on the sting of the village that has a number of trails and, extra importantly, is an effective place to entry the lake for swimming.
It isn’t a good suggestion to swim close to the docks of any of the villages because the water isn’t as clear and there are boats continually coming and going with drivers who could not see you within the water. The reserve, then again, is barely out of city and has particular sunbathing areas and leaping platforms.
San Pedro la Laguna
That is the most well-liked place to remain on the lake and is justifiably thought-about backpacker central and top-of-the-line villages to go to in your Lake Atitlan trip.
San Pedro la Laguna
It has numerous glorious eating places of all kinds, from Italian to Mexican to Israeli to Scottish (to not point out a number of Guatemalan locations). Most of those additionally double as bars.
Each the motels and eating places are usually cheaper in San Pedro due to each the competitors and the budget-conscious nature of their principal clientele. It is usually the place to be in case you like socializing, nightlife and simply usually staying busy.
Motion pictures, sports activities, poker tourneys, weekly BBQs, trivia nights – there isn’t any purpose to be bored in San Pedro. Some really helpful eating places are Thought Connection for Italian meals, The Fifth Dimension for vegetarian, El Barrio’s weekend brunch, and Smoking Joe’s Sunday BBQ. Additionally, when you can simply procure a Spanish tutor in any of the villages, San Pedro is certainly the most well-liked and inexpensive place on the lake to enhance your Spanish.
If you’re up for a bodily problem, the most well-liked factor to do in San Pedro is to climb Volcan San Pedro, which stands sentinel instantly above the city.
Most individuals take a tuk-tuk to the park the place the hike begins (at round 1,800 metres altitude). There it’s essential to pay a 100Q entry price (roughly $US13), which sounds a bit dear for Guatemala however does embody a information offered by the park.
Climbing occasions differ enormously, however on common most individuals take round three hours steadily climbing to succeed in the highest (at about three,000 metres), spend half an hour there having fun with superb views of the lake and volcanoes Toliman and Atitlan, then one other 1 ½ to 2 hours to get again down.
Take a jacket as it may be chilly on the prime and it’s best to go early as clouds typically collect across the prime of the volcano by late morning, lowering your likelihood of good views. It’s a good suggestion to get the cellphone variety of a tuk-tuk to name while you get again to the trailhead otherwise you would possibly end up having to stroll again down into city as effectively.
Altogether, a troublesome hike, however not dangerous within the scheme of volcanoes and most of it’s mercifully shaded.
The neighbouring village of San Juan la Laguna – solely a 10Q tuk-tuk journey away – is ideal for a brief go to because the centre of arts and textiles on the lake.
There are guides on the dock that provide excursions of the village with stops in numerous Ladies’s Cooperatives the place you may see how the textiles are historically made and know that your purchases are supporting the area people.
On the whole, San Juan is a clear, pleasant place that many repeat guests describe as their favorite on the lake.
Abstract of your Lake Atitlan 7-day itinerary
Lake Atitlan has sufficient to maintain you busy for at the very least per week and lots of discover themselves staying longer then they deliberate.
The surroundings, temperature, Mayan tradition, number of villages, and the big selection of issues to do in Lake Atitlan make this a tremendous place to go to in Guatemala.
And no go to to the lake could be full with out some high quality hammock time since, regardless of all of the alternatives to get lively, finally, Atitlan is all about rest.
The sweetness, slower tempo of life and relaxed ambiance are what most travellers love most about it.
Whether or not you might be perched out over the water with panoramic views or mendacity quietly in a secluded spot of shade underneath a big jacaranda tree, stretching out in a hammock with a very good ebook continues to be the important Lake Atitlan expertise.
As you may see from this text, there are many Lake Atitlan points of interest to incorporate in your Lake Atitlan itinerary!
Lake Atitlan high quality hammock time
Concerning the writer
Dean Johnston and Laynni Locke of Routinely Nomadic have visited each continent and 76 totally different nations however have nonetheless discovered the time to return to Lake Atitlan at the very least as soon as yearly since 2010. Observe them on Instagram, Fb, and Twitter too.