Community-based Tourism in Guatemala
Embark on an extraordinary journey through the soul of Guatemala with our community-based tourism experiences. Prepare yourself to revel in this breathtaking landscape, where the colors of local culture and the pristine beauty of unspoiled terrains merge to create an unforgettable travel experience.
Our bespoke travel tours are carefully curated to immerse you in the heart of Guatemala’s rich traditions while supporting sustainable tourism and empowering local communities. As you traverse this spellbinding land, get ready to connect with the heart of a nation through immersive encounters with its people, traditions, and heritage.
Living Mayan Culture
Releasing baby turtles
Experience the allure of Guatemala through our unforgettable tour, encompassing the historic charm of Antigua Guatemala, the breathtaking views from San Cristobal El Alto, and the vibrant traditions of Santo Domingo Xenacoj. Witness the awe-inspiring power of nature at the majestic Volcano Pacaya and unwind on the sun-kissed shores of El Paredon Beach.
Upon your arrival in the bustling Guatemala City, prepare to be enchanted by the fusion of ancient history and modern charm as you make your way to your lodge on Lake Atitlan. During this trip, You’ll create unforgettable memories and contribute to the sustainable growth and development of the communities that make Guatemala genuinely extraordinary.
Explore the vibrant town of San Juan La Laguna, a destination brimming with rich cultural experiences. Local artisans in this remote lakeside town thrive on patronage from visitors and tourists like you, who appreciate their intricate textile work, paintings, and chocolate-making skills, all of which contribute to the town’s economic growth.
Witness local weavers showcase their craft from start to finish and take part in immersive experiences that preserve the heritage, people, and environment of San Juan La Laguna. Supporting these local initiatives creates opportunities for the residents and helps maintain the community’s unique identity.
Day 3 will see us diving into the rich culture and heritage of the Mayan villages in Guatemala. Our first stop is the enchanting Santa Catarina Palopo. Home to the indigenous Kaqchikel people, the town is known for its vibrant, geometric patterns that adorn the traditional textiles and garments locals wear. These intricate designs represent the region and hold deep ancestral meaning, connecting the Kaqchikel people to their roots.
Santa Catarina Palopo has witnessed a remarkable transformation through an innovative community project in recent years. These eye-catching patterns and symbols are painted on the huts and houses, making the community a living work of art.
The resulting increase in visitors to Santa Catarina Palopo has created job opportunities, allowing locals to maintain their traditional livelihoods while adapting to the changing economic landscape.
As responsible tourists, our visits to Santa Catarina Palopo support these community-led initiatives and contribute to the town’s sustainable development. By participating in workshops and purchasing local handicrafts, we can directly help artisans and their families while fostering cultural exchange.
Later in the day, our journey continues to the quaint and colorful town of San Antonio Palopo, a hidden gem nestled along the shores of Lake Atitlan. Here, the residents are known for their exceptional pottery and traditional clothing. San Antonio Palopo is home to the Cooperative Integral, a collective that supports local artisans and their craft, ensuring that the town’s unique skills and knowledge go through generations.
As you explore the town, learn about pottery-making, and shop for authentic, handcrafted goods, you contribute to the local economy and help preserve the town’s traditions.
On day four, we explore sustainable agriculture by visiting a fair trade coffee plantation and the Macadamia farm Valhalla. Both experiences showcase responsible tourism’s positive impact on local communities and the environment.
At the fair trade coffee plantation, we learn about the coffee production process and the importance of reasonable trade practices. This practice ensures farmers receive a fair price for their coffee, leading to better working conditions and sustainable farming methods. Our visit supports the local community by promoting acceptable trade practices and prioritizing farmers’ well-being.
Next, we head to the Macadamia farm Valhalla, a sustainable, family-owned farm focused on environmentally friendly farming methods. There, we’ll learn how to make peanut butter from scratch and appreciate the efforts of those who work hard to bring us the products we enjoy.
On day five, you’ll venture to the enchanting town of San Cristobal El Alto, nestled amidst lush landscapes, the captivating flora, and thriving fauna. Responsible tourism is significant in preserving the town’s natural beauty and supporting the local economy.
Your visit begins with a tour of the town, where you’ll appreciate the vibrant flower-lined streets, earning it the nickname “garden town.” As you explore, you’ll witness responsible tourism’s impact on the community, providing job opportunities through guided tours and local businesses.
Next, we’ll head to Cerro San Cristobal, a remarkable restaurant garden with a panoramic view of the valley and Antigua Guatemala. The restaurant sources organic ingredients mainly from its on-site collective farm, showcasing the importance of sustainable agriculture and supporting local farmers.
Throughout your day in San Cristobal El Alto, you’ll marvel at the diverse flora, including over 50 varieties of orchids, and spot local fauna, such as birds and coyotes, as you hike the nearby trails.
On day six, you’ll arrive at the charming town of Santo Domingo Xenacoj, where a vibrant local community thrives. You’ll delve into the region’s cultural wonders while making a meaningful contribution to preserving traditional crafts and the economic well-being of the local people.
You will witness the breathtaking talent of this town’s women as they work tirelessly to protect their cherished weaving heritage. And as you explore the array of intricate, colorful textiles, you’ll gain a profound appreciation for the deep ancestral connections these garments represent for the Maya, serving as a tangible link to their heritage.
On day seven, you’ll leave the mountains behind and head to the sun-soaked shores of El Paredon. This relatively undiscovered beach town offers a delightful mix of relaxation, adventure, and opportunities for immersive experiences with the local community.
As you take in the warm sun and gentle ocean breeze, be captivated by the beauty of the pristine coastline. Dip your toes into the inviting waters or indulge in a refreshing swim. And don’t be shy to submit to local activities as the community uses your patronage to fund several environmental, education, and local employment projects.
We’re still working on El Paredon. Today, you will embark on a mangrove tour of El Paredon’s fragile ecosystem and witness how local organizations protect the area while providing economic benefits to the community.
Your participation in this tour helps preserve the mangrove ecosystem, empowers local families, and contributes to the region’s overall well-being.
Take advantage of your free morning to reflect on the unforgettable experiences you’ve shared with the local communities during your stay. In the afternoon, your driver will take you back to your hotel in Guatemala City, where you can rest before departing the next day.
Sadly, your incredible Guatemalan adventure comes to an end today. As you board your shuttle service to the airport, cherish the memories you’ve made and the connections you’ve forged with the vibrant communities you’ve visited. Remember that your support has impacted these families and their way of life, leaving a legacy of sustainable tourism in your wake.
map, expenses & price
Community based tourism
-All private transportation.
-Nine nights of hotel accommodations.
-Tours and excursions as listed.
Take your Guatemalan adventure to the next level with a trek to the awe-inspiring Volcano Pacaya, one of the most active volcanoes in the country. Ascend the slopes with a knowledgeable local guide and remain awestruck by the striking lava formations and breathtaking landscape.
The community guides are passionate about sharing their knowledge of the area, and your support helps create employment opportunities while preserving the region’s natural beauty. This exhilarating excursion adds another layer to your trip, highlighting the wonders of Guatemala and the importance of sustainable tourism.