The colourful life around

Lake Atitlan

2 min to read

Hello my good friend!

So, we spent almost a month at Lake Atitlan… we had several reasons for staying for so long, but we stayed mainly because we fell in love with the lake and volcanos. (Just like almost everyone who visits the lake.)

"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."

Aldous Huxley, Beyond the Mexique Bay travel book (1934) (btw this guy wrote my favourite book)

About Lake Atitlan

Lake Atitlan as one of the several lakes in Central America is considered among the most beautiful lakes in the World. It is located in the southern part of Guatemala, in the Guatemalan Highlands of the Sierra Madre mountain range, about 50 kilometres (31 mi) west-northwest of Antigua.

People from all around the World come to see Lake Atitlan because of the uniqueness and the balance of nature. They say every village and town around the lake has a different character: enjoy the perfect view from Santa Crúz, practice yoga in San Marcos, meet travellers in Panajachel, learn from local Mayans at San Juan and have a good party in San Pedro.
A normal man on a random street.

What to do?

  • Go to Sololá and check out the main market, buy local fruits and vegetables
  • Eat at a lake front restaurant in Santa Crúz, because there’s the best view of the lake!
  • Take a yoga class in San Marcos
  • Go to a party in San Marcos or San Pedro
  • Visit Diego’s Chocolate Factory in San Pedro! Ask the tuk-tuk drivers where is it.
  • Go to a local religious fiesta in San Pablo (it’s in January every year)
  • Check out the art galleries in San Jose
  • Learn how women make natural and handmade textiles in San Jose
  • Meet other travellers in Panajachel
  • Climb a volcano
  • Drink local coffee
  • Swim in the lake (but be careful, it’s quite dangerouse due to the boat traffic!)
  • Eat local food: mainly black beans, eggs, avocado, scubled eggs, fried plantanes and tortillas ofc.
  • or you can volunteer, just as we did 😛
here you can read more about our

Workaway story: Our perfect life at Lake Atitlan

In Sololá
In Sololá
Fiasta in San Pablo
Market on 4 levels
Making chocolate
How they make a scarf
Natural colours
Traditional breakfast
In a tuk-tuk

How to get around?

If you take a look at the map below, you’ll see that there are not so many roads around the lake. So the best way to get to one town to another is by boat. If you take the public boat, you’ll have to pay between Q5 and Q25 depending on the distance (from 0,7 to 3-4 USD).
Also, you can walk on the path between the towns, but be careful, because there can be thieves waiting for you. (We heard a story, that some guy with machetes wanted to get money from the travellers who just wanted to pass by, but the girl started to shout „Santa Maria! Santa Maria! Santa Maria!” So, the thieves ran away. :))) )
Oh, and at some places, you can take a tuk-tuk. It cheap and it can be really convenient because most of these towns are built on hills.

The Map

I think this lake is not a usual one… She has a unique spirit and if you go there you’ll get addicted to her, just like everyone else.

And as a final thought,
I would like to thank our very good friend from Danmark, Knud, for everything. One of the greatest people I’ve ever met, yet the simplest, because everything he dose it’s just because he wants to enjoy life. He’s a World traveller, storyteller, amazing listener, awesome photographer and a funny old man!
He gave me the answers and the inspiration I was looking for during the time we spent at the lake… 
See you soon, my friend!
Click on this ohoto to check out Knud's photography!

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