Places To Stay In Guatemala – The epicenter of Mayan culture in Central America, Guatemala is famous for its spectacular mountains, pristine beaches, pristine forests, ancient Mayan cities and the ruins of Tikal.
There is loads to see here. The main attractions of the country are filled with the beautiful cities of Antigua, the former capital of Spain, where visitors can find the best food and beautiful architecture in Central America.
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A touch of mysticism runs through everything in Guatemala, from the vibrant Mayan culture of Chichicastenango to the pristine waters of Lake Atitlán with its ring of mountains. Maybe one trip will leave you hooked for life, so here are the best places to visit to start your adventure in Guatemala, the Land of Eternal Summer.
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A 45-minute drive from Guatemala’s main airport, Antigua is the first and last stop for travelers in Guatemala, and it rarely disappoints. This beautiful cobblestone streets and charming houses are surrounded by high mountains, the most interesting of which is El Fuego (“the fire”), which regularly climbs the slopes of the rock. marked by low explosive levels.
Antiqua is a place to show selfies under the Arco de Santa Catarina, shop for Mayan handicrafts, take interesting pictures of the places with volcanic backs and colonial buildings, study language courses Spanish, and oil in the main parks of the city, restaurants. and sticks.
Some of the best restaurants in Guatemala can be found in Antigua, with excellent international and traditional and modern Guatemalan cuisine. Eat delicious, budget-friendly street food at the night market or splurge on a beautiful and atmospheric place. Bring food to Meson Panza Verde, a cozy hotel where dishes are made using local ingredients.
For days out of town, wake up early to hike the nearby Pattaya and Acatenango volcanoes, or wake up late and enjoy local cuisine at Caoba Farms. There is plenty here to fill many days of exploration.
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The volcano rises around Lago de Atitlán offering views of a landscape from another world © Simon Dannhauer / Shutterstock
Lago de Atitlán, considered by some to be the most amazing lake in the world, is tucked away in the western mountains and three high hills. The water of this deep and amazing lake turns turquoise to deep green to dark blue as the light changes with the time of day and the weather. Due to its unique beauty, travelers have been known to get stuck here for weeks, months or even years.
Small villages with different climates surround the lake. Party people should go to San Pedro La Laguna, while those interested in meditation and yoga will love the quieter San Marcos La Laguna. Spanish classes are available everywhere, but the best plan for the day is just chilling by the lake and marveling at the wonders of mother nature. More energetic activities for those who can’t sit still include parasailing, boating and climbing Volcán San Pedro.
Chichicastanango, aka “Chichi,” not only hosts the most interesting Mayan market in the country, but also has historical significance. The town was the trading center of the Quiche region before the conquistadors came, and the tradition of people coming from the hill villages to trade continues to this day.
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This leafy city is bustling with merchants every Sunday and Thursday, when visitors take day trips from Lago de Atitlán. You will find stalls full of home goods, carved masks and beautiful textiles, including antiques.
, and the complex nature of the designs and premium symbols can take anywhere from three months to a year to weave.
Other products that are sold in this natural market include wooden carvings, leather goods, pottery and jade, and silver and gold jewelry. While in Chichicastanango, pop into the small museum of Mayan masks and spend some time people watching on the incense burning steps of the Iglesia de Santo Tomás.
The largest lake in Guatemala, Lago Izabal is known for its geothermally heated waterfalls and mangroves teeming with wildlife. The lake drains into the Río Dulce, which flows directly into the town of Lívingston, the center of the Garifuna community on the Caribbean coast. Many travelers stop here on their way to the beach and hire a boat to take them down the river.
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Río Dulce is hot, humid and humid, and the movement is amazingly international, thanks to the series of marinas, restaurants and bars along the river that cater to the sailors. Stay at the beautiful Tortugal, a guest house on the marina, and let the water lull you to sleep, or take a trip to stay in one of the most remote, wild hostels of the river – Hotelito Perdido is a great option.
The Guatemalan department (province) of El Petén is one of the most biodiverse regions in Central America, and this is also where the great Mayan temple of Tikal is found. The ruins of this ancient city, which reached its peak in the 7th century, are buried in a deep forest, frequented by howler monkeys, coatis, agoutis and tropical birds and covered in lush vegetation. It is worth spending a few days here to explore the area around the beautiful Lago Petén Itzá, a deep green lake.
Several small communities line the waterfront. The island town of Flores is where most people stay when visiting Tikal, with a good selection of hostels and hotels, amenities and amenities. However, the often overlooked village of El Remate is a good option for those looking for more peace.
El Remate is small, but has plenty of hostels and is on the best part of the lake for swimming. As an added bonus, the village is close to Tikal, meaning a quick walk to the ruins. Check out Mon Ami Hostel and Restaurant for lakeside accommodations and lake-fish dinners, and Las Orquideas for delicious Italian cuisine.
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Less well-known than Tikal, but equally worthy of a visit, are the ruins of Yahxa, a small ceremonial site between two lakes, famous for its sunsets. For the more adventurous, a five-day jungle excursion to El Mirador, the largest Mayan complex in Central America, can be arranged through local Carmelita Tours.
Covered by the jungle, Tikal is the most interesting place in the Mayan world © Justin Foulkes / Lonely Planet
The isolated town of Nebaj is located in the remote foothills of the Cuchumatanes Mountains, an area known as the Ixil Triangle. It’s a great place to get off the tourist trail. Visitors can hike through the highest mountain chain in Central America, passing through high peaks and valleys that alternate between tropical forests and lush vegetation.
It is possible to travel from the Ixil triangle to Todos Santos, a small town famous for its Day of the Dead celebration every November. Starting from Nebaj, professional Quetzaltrekkers make the trip twice a month, based in Quetzaltenango.
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With beautiful turquoise pools and limestone bridges, the Semuc Champey National Park is one of the most beautiful places in Central America. It’s a bit of a challenge to get there, but the walk is well worth the effort to swim and relax surrounded by the beautiful and calm atmosphere.
The lakes are quite far away, and many visitors choose to stay in Lanquín, a village 45 minutes’ drive from Semuc Champey, where there are amenities and plenty of good hostels. Check out the Zephyr Lodge, a popular lodge with an infinity pool and incredible views of the surrounding mountains.
El Retiro Lodge is more relaxed and beautiful, with small huts located near the river. Day trips to the two lakes are organized by the hostel. Alternatively, if you are looking to stay as close to the pools as possible, Greengo’s Hotel has A-frame rooms just a 10-minute walk from the resort entrance.
Located in the middle of the Parque Nacional Laguna Lachuá, in the coffee- and cardamom-growing region of Alta Verapaz, this wonderful lake is quickly becoming one of the best places to visit in the country. Reached by a 5 km (3 mile) walk, this smooth, round, turquoise lake is bordered by interpretive trails, and is a great place to swim.
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Visitors can get to the lake only after walking through many areas of the tropical forest, home to monkeys, tarantulas, colorful birds and flowers. After working up a sweat on the way here, the deep cold pool is the best place to dive, cool down and relax. The park has no restaurants, so you need to bring your own water and food.
Monterrico is a popular beach resort for Guatemalans and offers a beautiful stretch of black sand where you can relax, swim and watch the most amazing sunsets. In the afternoon, take a tour through the protected mangrove forest to see tropical birds and other wildlife or visit the Tortugario Monterrico nature reserve in the evening to help release turtles from September to January.
A two-hour drive away, El Paredon is the smallest
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