Volcano tour in Guatemala

Lava and magma tour in Guatemala in 14 days.

14 day tour around the volcanoes of the Antigua region. You will have the opportunity to get close to active volcanoes, see lava and feel the warmth of molten magma. The Pacaya volcano is one of the 3 active volcanoes of Guatemala, its ascent is accessible to all. Climbing the Acatenango volcano is an unforgettable experience: on this demanding hike we approach the Fuego volcano, one of the most active in the Americas. Night in camp in front of the erupting giant for a guaranteed spectacle. The itinerary then proposes to discover the wonders of Guatemala including Lake Atitlan and the archaeological sites of the Petén. We end up with our feet in the Caribbean water at the Garifuna village of Livingston to recover from these beautiful adventures.

Length of stay: 14 days

Kind: Trek and adventure trips

Fix: To be fit

Countries visited: Guatemala

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Day 1 : Guatemala City

Bienvenidos a Guatemala!

Arrive at La Aurora International Airport in Guatemala City, meet your driver and transfer to Antigua. Overnight stay at the hotel Meson María.

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Day 2 : Antigua

Explore Antigua

Surrounded by 3 majestic volcanoes, the ancient capital of Central America has suffered throughout its history many natural hazards: earthquakes, floods, volcanic eruptions… But Antigua is now one of the most beautiful cities in Guatemala.

We invite you to discover the city which is host to more than thirty monasteries and convents and a grand cathedral in the central square. The cobblestone streets adjoin the colorful patios of the colonial houses. Stroll along the arcades of Parque Central, admiring in the distance the volcanoes Fuego, Agua and Acatenango.

NB : walking visit of the city (no vehicle). Overnight stay at the hotel Meson María.

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Day 3 : Antigua

Departure at 09:00 for a beautiful adventure at the Acatenango volcano.

Arrival at the starting point of the hike after 1h30 of transport. After some explanations by the guide, check the equipment, start of the hike on the slopes of Acatenango (about 5 hours of walking). The dormant volcano, whose summit rises to 3976 metres, offers a breathtaking view of the Antigua Valley . We appreciate the view but it is first our ears that are intrigued: the further we walk, the more we hear the Fuego volcano thunder in the distance , until its silhouette imposes itself, right there, before our eyes. Efforts are quickly forgotten, giving way to rewards and entertainment. . .

The Fuego is well named. It is one of the most monitored volcanoes in America, in constant activity. Its eruptions are violent and generate magma flows and lava projections that can reach hundreds of meters. Settling in our camp with a breathtaking view of the active crater in front of us , a few kilometers away.

Dinner at the camp. Night falls and awakens our senses. You can enjoy a glass of wine while observing the active volcano. During periods of high activity, lava jets illuminate the darkness . Regular explosions resound in the valley and remind us at all times of the presence of this imposing neighbour. Night in a tent in front of the awake giant.

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Day 4 : Acatenango

Optional ascent to the top of the Acatenango to enjoy the sunrise (1h30 walk, departure 4h30).

Then go down from the volcano and drive to Antigua. We return to the former capital of Guatemala in the late morning. The Fuego volcano is still there, in the background, reminding us of the strong emotions experienced the day before.

NB :

– Good physical condition required.
– Distance: 15. 3km; Vertical drop: 1726m; Maximum altitude: 3976m
– This hike can be replaced by a walk and camp on the active volcano Pacaya, less demanding (400m difference in altitude). Please contact us.
– Although the Fuego is one of the most active in the world, it may still experience periods during which its activity is limited. Overnight stay at the hotel Meson María.

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Day 5 : Antigua

Drive to Lake Atitlan , a highly emblematic place in Guatemala. The lake is nestled between 3 volcanoes at an altitude of 1600 metres, offering magnificent panoramas. The small villages along the lake – often only accessible by boat – perpetuate festivals and markets rooted in local traditions.

On the way, visit the typical and lively Sololá market (Tuesday and Friday). We appreciate the colour of traditional clothing.

In the afternoon free time in Panajachel in front of the beautiful Lake Atitlan.

Overnight stay at the hotel Dos Mundos Panajachel.

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Day 6 : Panajachel

Market day in Chichicastenango

Departure at 7am for Chichicastenango and its famous market (Thursday and Sunday). The Kaqchikel Indians come down twice a week from the surrounding villages to sell their goods. The women wear the traditional huipil representing the seasons of the Mayan calendar. The city is then transformed into a real kaleidoscope of colours and smells. In the centre of the village, shamans purify the church stairs with incense and perform Mayan rituals.

Return to the shores of Lake Atitlan and visit Santa Catarina Palopo . The inhabitants of this pretty little village live mainly from agriculture, fishing and weaving. Since 2016, a community project has been gradually repainting the village houses with the colours of the local huipil: deep blue with traditional motifs. Beautiful!

We recommend a visit to the Santa Catarina Cultural Centre where you can interact with the locals, learn more about their way of life and even try on traditional clothes. Overnight stay at the hotel Dos Mundos Panajachel.

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Day 7 : Panajachel

Navigation on Lake Atitlan and Mayan villages

Day trip by boat to discover the Tzutuhil villages of Lake Atitlan. The Tzutuhil indigenous people are one of the 21 Mayan peoples of Guatemala. They are present in only a handful of villages southwest of Lake Atitlan.

Heading for Santiago Atitlan . Visit of Santiago Atitlan and discovery of a curious syncretic cult. Half good, half bad, Maximón is feared as much as he is idolized. The villagers make offerings in the form of cigarettes, alcohol or money.

Continuation by boat to San Antonio Palopo . Discovery of the small Mayan village where the inhabitants live mainly from agriculture and weaving. Ceramics are also produced and sold throughout the region. Overnight stay at the hotel Dos Mundos Panajachel.

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Day 8 : Antigua

Lava and magma at the Pacaya Volcano

Departure at 3pm for the Pacaya volcano, one of the 3 active volcanoes in Guatemala. After 1h30 of transport, start of the ascent (3h of walking, 400 meters of altitude difference). The hike is accessible to all and offers beautiful views of the valley. Night falls when we arrive at the base of the cone. We then observe the lava flows that flow and illuminate the side of the volcano. Fumaroles are escaping from the crater. The show is unique, striking.

Descent of the giant and return to Antigua around 10pm.

NB: Good physical condition recommended. Possibility of horseback riding on site. A pic nic and a hot drink will be served at the top. Option included : Entrance fees to volcan Pacaya. Option included : english speaking local guide in XXX (meeting at xxx at xxx) Option included : english speaking local guide in XXX (meeting at xxx at xxx) Overnight stay at the hotel Meson María.

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Day 9 : Antigua

Highlands in the Verapaces

Today, depart for the region of Alta Verapaz whose mountainous landscapes are covered with mist, waterfalls and lush forests.

Visit a coffee cooperative made up of small producers of the Q’eqchi ethnic group in the highlands of Cobán. A community member accompanies visitors to the plantation, explaining the history of coffee in Guatemala, the processes of production and roasting. The tour continues with a zipline route over coffee plants.

Continue to Cobán , capital of Alta Verapaz located at 1300 meters altitude. The name of the city comes from the Indian Quek’chi between the clouds .

Option included : Entrance fees to Coffee tour. Overnight stay at the hotel Casa Gaia.

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Day 10 : Coban

Today, depart for the region of Alta Verapaz whose mountainous landscapes are covered with mist, waterfalls and lush forests.

Arrival in Sayaxché and boarding on a motorized lancha .

Refreshing swim at Crater Azul

Nice boat trip on the Río la Pasión . We can observe many birds that have made their home in the Petexbatún lagoon: herons, kingfishers, cormorants. Turtles and crocodiles hide on the banks of the river. After about 1 hour of navigation, we arrived at the Crater Azul ( blue crater ), a natural site little known to travellers.

With an unequalled transparency, the Crater Azul is a cenote, an underwater well about ten meters deep. We jump into the water for a refreshing swim in this fresh and crystal clear water , home to an amazing water garden.

Return by boat to Sayaxché. Road to Flores , in the heart of Petén.

Excursion Overnight stay at the hotel Isla de Flores. Premium Room.

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Day 11 : Flores

Tikal: Jewel of the Mayan World

Today is dedicated to the exploration of the impressive city of Tikal, built in the 4th century BC. The city reached its peak between the 3rd and 9th century AD.

Some 3,000 structures emerge from the rainforest in a mystical atmosphere. The Temple of the Great Jaguar faces that of the masks on the main square, in the center of the city. At a height of 65 meters, the Serpent Temple was the tallest building in the New World until the 19th century.

Nature very much still present at Tikal, engulfing every traveler who enters the reserve. Spider monkeys, pheasants, coatis, toucans and other multicolored parrots are on display. The screams of the howler monkeys can be heard for miles around. Odors of lianas and roots surprise you as you explore the site.

In 2017, new research techniques have uncovered temples still buried in the jungle. Tikal has not finished revealing all its mysteries…

Transfer to Flores on a peninsula of Lake Peten Itza. Option included : english speaking local guide in Tikal. Option included : Entrance fees to Tikal. Overnight stay at the hotel Isla de Flores. Premium Room.

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Day 12 : Livingston

Today, travel approximately 4 hours to the Rio Dulce . Here you can feel the atmosphere of the Caribbean! Visit Fort San Felipe which was built in the 17th centre to stop the continuous pirate attacks and view the many sailboats that anchor here today.

Sweet Rio Dulce

Take a private boat trip out onto the Rio Dulce. Travel past a canyon and take a dip in some hot springs. Arrive at the village of Livingston where part of the population are the ethnic group Garifuna , who are descendants of black slaves. You will notice how different the culture is here to the rest of Guatemala! Overnight stay at the hotel Villa Caribe.

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Day 13 : Livingston

Boarding for Puerto Barrios (40mn of navigation) and road to Quirigua (1h30).

Visit of the archaeological site in the Motagua Valley. Quirigua was an important and respected city during the Mayan classical period (200 – 900 AD). The site is particularly renowned for the beauty of its stelae, the highest reaching 10. 70 metres high and weighing 65 tonnes. Continuation to Guatemala (5h).

Overnight stay at the hotel Stofella.

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Day 14 : Guatemala City

Today, meet your driver and transfer to Guatemala City Airport.

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