Welcome to Tours Atitlan - Adventure on Lake Atitlan, Tips - how to get to lake atitlan

Guatemala tours and Independent travel service for groups and individual travelers since 2005...


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How to get to Lake Atitlan

From Antigau Guatemala take a Shuttle to Panajache: Panajachel (Pana) is a town in the southwestern Guatemalan Highlands, in the department of Sololá. It serves as the administrative centre for the surrounding municipality of the same name. The altitude is 1,597 metres (5,240 ft). The population is 11,142.

The town of Panajachel is located on the shore of Lake Atitlán, and has become a centre for the tourist trade of the area as it provides a base for visitors crossing the lake to visit other towns and villages.

Short History

In the 16th century, during the period of the Spanish conquest of Guatemala, the shore of the lake was the scene of a battle in which the Spanish and their Kaqchikel allies defeated the Tz'utujils. The Spanish set up a church and monastery in Panajachel soon afterward, and used the town as a centre to convert the indigenous people of the region to the Roman Catholic faith. The original façade of the church still stands, and is considered one of the gems of the colonial style in Guatemala.

The town attracted many hippies in the 1960s, but the numbers of foreign visitors plummeted during the Guatemalan Civil War. After the war ended, tourists started coming back, and Panajachel's economy is once again primarily based on tourism.

From Panajachel to the rest of the villages of Lake Atitlan

Santa Cruz La Laguna is a municipality in the Sololá department of Guatemala. It is located on the northern shore of Lake Atitlán and can be reached by boat for 15 minutes, the price for a boat ride is Q15 per person. If you want to hire a private boat call us 53 55 88 49 the price is Q150 one way, if there are more than 6 the price is Q15 per person

Santa Cruz La Laguna, Jaibalito: Jaibalito is just a small village five minutes after Santa Cruz la Laguna by boat. The price is 15 to 20 per person in a public boat. If you want to hire a private boat call us 53 55 88 49 the price is Q150 one way, if there are more than 6 the price is Q15 per person.

Santa Cruz La Laguna, Tzununá: It is another small village that belongs to Santa Cruz la laguna. It is located 10 minutes ahead from Santa Cruz. The only way to get there is by boat. the price is 15 to 20 Quetzales from Panajachel. If you want to hire a private boat call us 53 55 88 49 the price is Q200 one way, if there are more than 8 the price is Q20 per person.

Santa Cruz La Laguna, San Marcos: San Marcos La Laguna is a quiet town on Lake Atitlán in Guatemala. The town has become a bit of a Mecca for all things spiritual, with several meditation, yoga, and massage centers. It's one of the most beautiful spots on the lake, and quite easy to lose a few days in. Take a public boat from the public dock at Panajachel (Q20 up to 25, 45 minutes).

If you want to hire a private boat call us 53 55 88 49 the price is Q250 one way, if there are more than 8 the price is Q20 per person.

San Juan la Laguna is a town on Lake Atitlán. It doesn't have nearly as many tourists as other towns around the lake, and so it is a much quieter, more relaxed place to stay.

Lanchas from Panajachel heading to San Pedro la Laguna will take you to the dock in San Juan if you ask Q25 per person. A tuk-tuk from San Pedro should cost no more than Q5, and just walking it is fairly quick (~2km). Alternatively, the pickups and buses servicing the towns around the lake can get you to San Juan as well.

San Pedro La Laguna is a small town with a population of approximately 13,000 people, which is nestled on the Western shore of Lake Atitlan beneath the volcano which also bears its name. It is in the Sololá department of Guatemala. The inhabitants of San Pedro are primarily Tz'utujil Mayan with a small, but growing, expatriate community. Many travelers visit the town to study at one of the Spanish schools, take time out in a solar pool, or a horse-ride to the top of Volcan San Pedro. This is primarily a coffee growing area and a backpacker destination.

Santiago Atitlán is a city in Guatemala on Lake Atitlán near Panajachel. Famous as the largest indigenous population of Tzutujile Mayans.

Lanchas from Panajachel heading to Santiago Atitlan Q25 per person.

If you are in Santa Cruz la laguna, San Marcos, or San Juan; you must take a boat to San Pedro or Panajachel in order to get the boat to Santiago Atitlan. In case that you want to save 1 1/2 hr. call us 53 55 88 49 for a private boat for Q350 both ways. if there are more than 8 people pay 60 per person.

Santa Catarina Palopó is easy to get to. From Panajachel public pickups known as fletes leave regularly. To find a flete walk up the Calle Principal towards the market. At the road to Santa Catarina in front of Chalos grocery you will see fletes going to San Antonio Palopó and Santa Catarina Palopó. Though the pickups going to San Antonio Palopó will pass through Santa Catarina, it's best to board one that is going directly to Santa Catarina. Ask the driver if he is going to Santa Catarina or look for the women wearing blue trajes in the back. The cost is can change each way, dont pay more thatn Q10.

Alternatively, if you don't want to take public transportation you can arrange private boat service. 53 55 88 49 the price is Q350 two ways with time to swim in the hot springs if there are more than 8 the price is Q20 per person.


About Lake Atitlan

Lake Atitlán (Lago de Atitlán) is a large endorheic lake (one that does not flow to the sea) in the Guatemalan Highlands. While Atitlan is recognized to be the deepest lake in Central America, its bottom has not been completely sounded. Estimates of its maximum depth range up to 340 meters. The lake is shaped by deep escarpments which surround it and by three volcanos on its southern flank. Lake Atitlan is further characterized by towns and villages of the Maya people.

The lake is volcanic in origin, filling an enormous caldera formed in an eruption 84,000 years ago. It is renowned as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world, and Aldous Huxley famously wrote of it: "Lake Como, it seems to me, touches on the limit of permissibly picturesque, but Atitlán is Como with additional embellishments of several immense volcanoes. It really is too much of a good thing."