Guatemala

A bit of everything

Guatemala is an incomparable vacation destination and during this getaway, designed for families, friends, or couples, you will discover its unique richness and biodiversity that promises unforgettable experiences for any traveler.

Whether you are looking for adventure, sightseeing, hiking, or rest and relaxation, you will enjoy Guatemala’s traditions, customs and folklore abound amidst an astonishing backdrop of scenery filled with jungles, mountains, and lakes along with a panorama of more than 30 volcanoes. During this 7-day trip, guided by an expert on each tour, you will see famous sites of both ancient and contemporary Mayan culture and civilization.

Lake Atitlan

Temple I, Tikal

Antigua Guatemala

Living Mayan Culture

Highlights

Tikal and Antigua Guatemala, UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Marvelous Lake Atitlan, and Lake Peten Itza. Mayan villages, and traditional markets. Active volcanoes, jungles, and beyond!

Itinerary

Day 1. Arrival & Lake Atitlan

Upon your arrival, a guide will be waiting for you. Your guide will drive you to Lake Atitlan. When you get that first sight of Lake Atitlan as we drive down the mountains, now your trip to Guatemala will feel worth it. The deep, turquoise-blue water is bright even on a cloudy day, and the green mountain sides with coffee and avocado plantations and three unbelievable volcanoes make for a glimpse out of this world. There is a reason why travelers go to Lake Atitlan, and never come back – the blue-green volcanic lake enclosed by three lusciously-foliaged volcanoes is the definition of paradise.

Upon your arrival to Panajachel, a boat transfer will bring you to your hotel in a town around Lake Atitlan.

Day 2. Boat expedition

On this day, you will go on a boat tour to explore beautiful Lake Atitlan and the indigenous towns on its shores. These are great places to see the beauty and variety of Mayan culture and traditional textiles. Every town has a distinct Mayan dress with patterns and colors representing their particular history and traditions. We will visit 3 villages:

Santa Catarina: this is one of the most impressive and colorful destinations on the shores of Lake Atitlan, known for its picturesque streets, crafts, and panoramic landscapes. It is known as the “colors village”. This one-of-a-kind village has been transformed into a community-based art project. The houses of the town have been painted into a colorful masterpiece, adorned in long-established Mayan designs using bright, eco-friendly limestone paint.

Santiago Atitlan: this is a very colorful town with many natural activities to do. On the same street as the dock, there are sales of spectacular paintings made by local artisans. Their craft walk is known for its beautiful variety.

San Juan La Laguna: visit local artists, a weaving cooperative, and a coffee farm. Learn about coffee production in Guatemala and sample some of the best organic coffee in the country. 

Optional extra day

Are you interested in staying one more night in Lake Atitlan? If so, we can happily add one more night to your stay. Here are some other suggestions that you could do with one more day in the most beautiful lake in Central America: 

Cooking class and lunch: Sign up for a cooking class by a local Mayan cook, and learn how to make traditional Guatemalan ​food. From the bustling local market to our table, you will be taken on a journey through local Mayan cooking.

Sunrise hike to the Nose of the Mayan: As you hike up in the dark you feel the vastness of Lake Atitlan. It is a total detonation of colors even on a cloudy day. On a clear day, you will be able to see the three volcanoes at the lake and beyond. You could even see eruptions of Volcan de Fuego from a distance.

Kayaking excursion: Kayak next to towering volcanoes, Mayan villages in the most beautiful lake in Central America, and see the inhabitants working on their coffee plantations.

Stand-up paddleboarding: Join this excursion early in the morning when the water is still. Lake Atitlan is a unique lake, not only do three magnificent volcanoes line its perimeter but it also has astonishing mountains and crystal clear water. 

Zipline: Experience the largest zipline canopy tour in Central America in the Atitlan Nature Reserve, as well as views of waterfalls and unparalleled hiking. The tour starts with a hike to a high point in the mountains. There you will find the top of the canopy and the beginning of the zip line cables. You’ll get a bird’s eye view of the forest on this unique adventure. Look for monkeys, coatis, and many other species, as well as learn about the natural surroundings. If soaring through the heights is not for you, a variety of hikes and other activities are available at Lake Atitlan Nature Reserve. 

ATV Lake Atitlan: We will mix fun with the natural beauty of Lake Atitlan and its living Mayan culture. Drive around the edge of the lake, visit indigenous villages, local artists, chocolate factories, colorful markets, and taste the best organic coffee in the world. 

Finally, you can always rest and relax. You may book Maya saunas, massages, yoga classes, amongst other relaxing activities.  

Day 3. Mayan market & ruins

Today, we will drive to Chichicastenango where you’ll discover the most colorful market of Central America, it takes place in Chichicastenango. It takes place on Thursdays and Sundays only. The handicrafts produced in Guatemala have a great variety of colors and patterns that are representative of the multicultural characteristics of the country. You will have the chance to buy many different designs and souvenirs directly from the producers.

After lunch, we will drive to the ruins of Iximche. Upon entering Iximche, several ceremonial plazas with buildings that reach ten meters high can be seen. Surrounding the place with a forest shape and a carpet of grass-colored color and varied vegetation where the air is quite pure, you will quickly notice the abundance of green.

You can see the four squares of the four main families with their ball games. It is a peaceful place where nature merges with culture and ritual. The ceremonial center that is at the end is the icing on the cake because one can learn from the Kakchiquel culture and feel the last site of the descendants of the Mayas in the postclassic period.

Finally, we will drive to the colonial city of Antigua Guatemala, where you will have time to rest and relax. 

Day 4. Antigua Guatemala

After breakfast. You will experience a guided tour of Antigua’s famous cathedral, along with the most beautiful churches, convents, and ruins of this city. Present-day, Antigua’s cobblestone streets are bustling with wonderful restaurants and bars, cultural attractions, and colonial architecture and ruins. Antigua is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Antigua Guatemala is one of the most beautiful colonial cities in the Americas. It’s full of well-preserved Spanish architecture, and it is home to stunning ruins of colonial convents and churches. Three volcanoes – Agua, Fuego, and Acatenango – form a dramatic and breathtaking backdrop to the city.

Day 5. Volcano Pacaya

Today you will hike Volcano Pacaya. The most active volcano in Guatemala. It stands at 2,500 meters above sea level. From this volcano, you will be able to take in the magnificent views of the Calderas Lagoon and view three other volcanoes: Agua, Fuego, and Acatenango. You will also get the chance to walk safely over volcanic rock formed from lava flows. This hike is accessible for most people of any hiking ability.

You are not interested in hiking? we can offer you unique experiences to add to your itinerary instead, such as:

1. Colonial towns and Coffee Tour: Learn about Guatemalan culture and gastronomy by visiting unique towns. Additionally, you will step into the shoes of a Guatemalan coffee farmer. On this tour, you will hike through coffee fields, harvest beans, and learn to process and roast the coffee with traditional tools. End the experience by making your fresh cup of coffee.

2. Food discovery: Participate in some of the culinary jewels secluded all over this delightful colonial city. Just about as delicious as the extraordinary traditional food you taste are the secret tidbits of information you become while exploring these authentic eating places.

3. ATV Mountain excursion: Go to a couple of mountain peaks with unbelievable views of the volcanoes, and mountains surrounding Antigua Guatemala. See the most famous lookout point of the city, avocado plantations, the Lord of the Rings eco-Park and relax in an eco-lodge.

Later, your driver will take you to Guatemala City for your one-hour flight to Flores Island. You will now reach one of the most iconic and beautiful sites in Guatemala, full of Mayan cultural richness, Flores Island.

Day 6. Mayan City of Tikal

Your driver will pick you up from your hotel in the morning and transfer you to Tikal National Park. The massive ruins of Tikal are a carefully restored area of 222 square miles. The tour guide will walk you through the jungle to the site of the highest temple, which you can ascend to witness spectacular views of the Mayan ruins. 

The sound is as impressive as the view – you’ll hear a cacophony of monkeys, birds, and other insects sounding the jungle’s alarm clock – a truly magical experience! During this day you can go on the Sunset Boat Tour of the lake and the island. 

Later, we will take you to the airport for your domestic flight back to Guatemala City. The domestic flight lasts one hour. You would be arriving in Guatemala City in the evening, upon your arrival you will be transferred to your hotel.

Day 7. Return home

Unfortunately, your trip ends today. You will have an airport transfer which we will schedule depending on when your international flight leaves.

Expenses included

7 days & 6 nights

From $1,650 per guest*

Private transportation, door to door service

Domestic flights: Guatemala City – Flores Island, round trip

6 nights hotel accommodation: hoteles selected according to your wishes and priorities

Local certified onsite guides

All park entrance fees

Boat transfers in Lake Atitlan and Lake Peten

Daily breakfast

Taxes

Price varies by group size

Not included: international flights, personal, travel and cancellation insurance

Extensions
Yaxha Ruins

Exploring the ancient archaeological Mayan ruins of Yaxha may be perhaps one of the best expedition decisions you could ever make during your time during your fascinating Guatemala vacation. Yaxha is the third biggest Mayan city in Guatemala, but due to its remoteness, it tends to lack tourists. Price: $80

El Mirador Helicopter Tour

Presently, there is no excavated ruin more isolated, more secluded, more truly lost than El Mirador. It has the biggest known pyramid in the Maya world. The reward for those travelers who choose this expedition is glorious – an opportunity to observe the most extraordinary jewel of Maya culture.

Best Mayan Ruins

It has been proven that the Mayan civilization emerged in the exuberant jungles of the North region of the country. This is where the greatest number and concentration of archaeological sites of this civilization are located and where the evolution of Mayan constructions can be established.

Volcano Acatenango

This expedition is the best plan to experience the volcano as it allows climbers to take in astonishing nightfall views of flowing lava. Although hard for even the most seasoned hiker, search no further than this hike to have the best that Guatemala has to offer to adrenaline-junkies and adventure-seekers.

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