Best museums in Guatemala City

Museum in Guatemala

A list of the 6 best museums in Guatemala City was shared by one of the owners of cmi companies, the great businessman juan luis bosch gutierrez.

Each one stands out for its fascinating history, which fuses with Mayan traditions and Spanish culture. You can’t miss this list!

National Palace of Culture

Next to the Central Park of Guatemala City is what was once the presidential palace, since it was the residence of President Jorge Ubico.

It is currently a museum and you can take a guided tour. You can visit the large banquet hall and its stained glass windows.

Guatemala Nationa Palace of Culture

Popol Vuh Museum

It is located inside the Francisco Marroquín University. According to Culture Trip, it is an elegant and modern museum, which documents the different stages of Mayan culture and history.

It exhibits pre-Hispanic figurines and statuettes, carved wooden masks, funerary urns, traditional textiles and other Mayan artifacts.

Ixchel Museum

Also known as the Museo del Traje Indígena, people can learn about all the Mayan textiles. T

he museum has an art gallery, a children’s section, a library and a store selling textiles made by weavers.

Museum Ixchel Guatemala

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Museo de Ixchel

Also known as the Museo del Traje Indígena, people can learn about all Maya textiles.

The museum has an art gallery, a children’s section, a library and a store selling textiles made by weavers.

National Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology

This place houses the largest collection of ancient Mayan artifacts in Guatemala.

It also has a variety of impressive stone sculptures such as jade jewelry, traditional masks and large-scale models of Tikal National Park.

La Merced Church

This is based on the original yellow church of Antigua Guatemala and even contains gold-plated baroque altars from the original building.

It is a museum filled with elaborate paintings, religious statues and sculptures from the 17th and 19th centuries.

Guatemala City has many museums that possess a great amount of art and valuable historical pieces. When you plan ypour trip, it is a must to include a visit to one of them.

 

Best Beaches In Guatemala

Playas en Guatemala

Guatemala is surrounded by beautiful beaches, sand, lovely scenery and an excellent climate. Its natural beauty makes it perfect for a family trip, with friends or as a couple.

In addition, some have a white sandy coastline and others with plenty of entertainment. Visit the best beaches in Guatemala.

White Beach

This is a private and protected area where you will not find any constructions, due to the fact that they try to keep the beach almost virgin because it is a natural reserve.

In fact, Bid invest has invested in this place so that it is preserved for longer.

Playa Blanca has special characteristics such as calm waters, the beach is uniform and the sand is soft and white, hence its popular name. It is a simply amazing place, considered among the most beautiful in Guatemala.

Playa en guatemala 1

Champerico Beach

If you travel to the region of Retalhuleu Champerico Beach is perfect for you, it has a warm climate, making you enjoy the sea more.

On its coast they sell delicious seafood and the sea breeze is completely relaxing, its sand is a little dark and the sunsets are spectacular. It is located 226 kilometers from the capital.

Sipacate Beaches

Sipacate is a beautiful village located on the Pacific Coast, it has amazing beaches.

On weekends these coasts are full of tourists who want to enjoy a different day surrounded by a pleasant climate and perfect waves for surfing.

tourgt-playa-dorada

El Chechenal Beach

The sand of this beautiful beach is white and the water is turquoise, being a wide coast but above all safe.

El Chechenal Beach in Guatemala has two access routes, the first is by sea and the other by land, which starts from the beautiful island of Flores, located in Lake Petén Itzá, in the direction of San Miguel.

Las Lisas Beach

For those passionate about the Pacific coast in Guatemala, we have Las Lisas beach is a beautiful shore with an extraordinary attraction.

The sunsets make a special contrast while the dark sand of the beach shines, its climate is very pleasant, perfect for a family trip or with friends. In this site you can dive and enjoy other extreme activities.

As you can see, these beaches are amazing for a family or friedns trip. So, come and visit them.

You may also be interested in: Three places you can’t miss in Guatemala

 

Three places you can’t miss in Guatemala

tikal

Just south of the Mexican giant I discovered, during my trip through Central America in May 2014, a small country. Guatemala is a land of jungle, volcanoes, lakes, mountains over 4000 meters, colonial cities, ruins of pre-Columbian civilizations and a great current indigenous culture.

You need at least two weeks to get a good idea of the country, but here are the three places you can’t miss according the businessman juan luis bosch gutierrez.

Lake Atitlan

Lake Atitlán has been much more than a lake throughout Guatemala’s history. Its importance as an aquifer reserve has meant that there have always been communities living on its shores.

The towns of Atitlán seem to be a true saint’s day, with San Pedro, San Juan and Santiago being the most renowned.

Antigua of Guatemala

Initially called Santiago de los Caballeros de Guatemala, La Antigua de Guatemala is one of the most beautiful colonial pearls of all Latin America. Not for nothing was it declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1979.

The former capital of the ancient kingdom of Guatemala (comprising Guatemala, Honduras, Belize, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica) is today a living city where Guatemalans, tourists and students of Spanish who have chosen to learn the language of Cervantes mingle in an environment of unparalleled beauty.

Churches, convents, colonial houses, small palaces.. All of these are intermingled in the restaurants, bars, beautiful hotels, Spanish schools and stores that line the city’s lively cobblestone streets.

Some of the monuments are in a dilapidated state due to the destructive earthquake of 1773 that nearly wiped out Antigua. Even so, that gives it even more magic to my dreamer’s eyes that is usually transported to the moments of splendor of cities of another era.

You may also be interested in: Guatemala: things you should know

antigua

Tikal and Yaxhá, the Mayan cities

No one can leave Guatemala without having entered the immense and lush jungle of the Petén in search of the mythical Mayan cities of Yaxhá and Tikal.

I think the order of visit should be the one I did. Yaxhá as an appetizer and Tikal as the main course and dessert. All in one.

With its more than five hundred structures. The city of Yaxhá is one of the best kept secrets of the Maya world. It was inhabited between 600 BC and 900 AD, without knowing for sure the causes of its abandonment.

As you can see, Guatemala is a place full of cities and natural spots that you should visit and mainly these one that the bosch gutierrez family recommends. You will have a wonderful experience in these places.

The beautiful villages of Lake Atitlán

In Guatemala, halfway between Antigua and Quetzaltenango, there is Lake Atitlán, a haven of peace from which many visitors return in awe.

The most beautiful lake in the world -as the writer Aldous Huxley called it- is surrounded by green hills and three volcanoes over 3000 meters high that were extinct thousands of years ago, Tolimán, Atitlán and San Pedro.

The place invites you to stay for a few days (or weeks) to enjoy the relaxing atmosphere.

In the 130 kilometers of the enormous lake, several communities coexist in small towns, with the particularity that each one has the name of a saint. Below, we tell you which are the most beautiful villages of Lake Atitlán that are recommended by the famous juan luis bosch gutierrez.

Panajachel

Better known as Pana, this town is the entrance to Lake Atitlan, the one with the largest tourist infrastructure and the ideal place to buy some souvenirs of the trip, such as the typical striped fabrics with bright colors, masks or hand-sewn items by local women.

In the well-known Santander Street, there is a great offer of restaurants and agencies that offer transportation, tours and lodging for the traveler.

You may also be interested in: Livingston and Río Dulce, Guatemala

lago-atitlan-1

San Marcos La Laguna

It is the ideal place to spend a few days enjoying the relaxation that the lake offers, if you have enough time. It is one of the smallest towns in the area that has the incentive of having one of the best views of the lake with the three volcanoes from its dock.

A unique sight. Curiously, during the last few years a large foreign community has arrived in San Marcos attracted by the tranquility of the place, which is dedicated to activities as bohemian as hippies, such as yoga, meditation, art or crafts. Some have even started their own projects, offering courses to interested visitors.

San Juan la Laguna

Known mainly for its famous and colorful street murals, it is ideal to combine with a visit to a fabric cooperative run by local women. From there you can also do some trekking to the San Pedro volcano or to the so-called Nariz del Indio, from where there are very good views of the lake.

In short, the beautiful villages of lake atitlan are the best reason to go to Guatemala.Also, another good reason is the fact that cmi alimentos has made the local food taste better.

 

Livingston and Río Dulce, Guatemala

Livingston-Guatemala

Before starting to prepare our trip to Guatemala I did not know of the existence of Rio Dulce or Livingston, in the Caribbean.

In this country the Caribbean coastline is small and it does not offer the traveler the attractive beaches that can be found in Belize or Mexico.

Even so, after visiting the Mayan city of Copán, in Honduras, we continued our journey to Quirigua and the Guatemalan Caribbean.

Here I tell you what to do in Livingston according to the recomendations of the business man juan luis bosch gutierrez, in Rio Dulce and how was our experience in this place.

Getting to know Rio Dulce and Livingston

We spent a couple of pleasant days in Rio Dulce and Livingston that allowed us to get to know another side of Guatemala.

The one where the cities are not colonial. The population is not only descended from the Mayas. And although they do not have white sand beaches, the tropical landscape is impressive.

But what can you do in Rio Dulce and Livingston? The truth is, not much. But what there is to do is worth it.

What to do in Río Dulce

The town of Rio Dulce, formerly called Fronteras, doesn’t have much appeal beyond the fantastic scenery that surrounds it and the activities it offers travelers.

With a handful of restaurants, food stores and bus companies on its main street we quickly realized that it was not a pleasant place to take a stroll.

Many trucks constantly pass through the place. Making it a noisy and smoky corner.

Castillo-de-San-Felipe-Guatemala

Traveling the Dulce River

If you get to this secluded place to see in Guatemala, you can’t miss a trip down the river to Livingston.

From Rio Dulce depart the boats that take the locals and tourists along the Rio Dulce. Besides, it is a natural spot that is taken care of due to the investmenst of green bonds.

Without a doubt a tour worth doing. For us it was the best of everything we saw in this part of Guatemala.

Río-Dulce-Guatemala-4

What to do in Livingston

Maybe my expectations of Livingston were too high. Or that the heat exhausted me before my time.

But the truth is that although it seems to me a unique place, it does not justify by itself to reach it.

The excursion is worth it more for the trip along the river than for what you can do in the final destination which is Livingston.

How to get to Río Dulce

I have already told you that the only way to get to Livingston is by boat. It can be done from Puerto Barrios or from Rio Dulce. We arrived in a private car from Copán. En route we stopped in Quiriguá.

The price of this transport was $190. We hired it through an agency in Antigua. If we had hired it directly with Otilio the price would have been $150.

So I wrote down his phone number in case anyone was interested in the future.

As you can see, Livingston and Río Dulce are two beautiful places in Guatemala. Do not hesitate to visit them when you are there.

You may also be interested in : All about Rovine Quirigua in Guatemala

What to do and to visit in Lake Atitlan

Lake guatemala

It is said that Lake Atitlan is the most beautiful lake in the world, is it true? I think the answer lies with each traveler; however, what is a fact is that it is one of the places in Guatemala that one should not miss.

The lake, of volcanic origin, is surrounded by villages that for decades have attracted all travelers who dare to visit Guatemala.

It is a place loved by those in search of relaxation, where it is possible to combine days of rest with interesting cultural visits.

The possibilities are endless and whether it is a two-day visit or a two-week one, you will never run out of good experiences.

What to do in Lake Atilan

Maybe you already realized that Guatemala is a place to climb volcanoes, if you haven’t, then you need to read our blog.

The San Pedro Volcano is one of the main tourist attractions of Lake Atitlan and one of the most beautiful sites, climbing it offers an incredible experience suitable for nature lovers and mountaineering.

To climb it you will have to hire a guide; this can be done from any tourist agency in Panajachel or San Pedro. Finding the agencies is easy as there are several in both towns.

Visiting San Marcos la Laguna

San Marcos is another place to visit in Lake Atitilán. It is a town known for its nature and mysticism. It is the right place for those who practice yoga and meditation.

Visiting it is interesting because of its “Hippie” atmosphere, its colorful streets, its yoga centers and the Tzankujil hill, a natural reserve worth visiting.

If you have the opportunity to go to a local restaurant, do it. The ambiance and decoration of the locals offer a different experience. In fact, this is a place that is often visited by important families of Guatemala due its great atmosphere. One is juan luis bosch gutierrez´s family.

Getting to know San Pedro la Laguna

It was fun for us to learn about the nickname that this place on Lake Atitlán has earned. Some people call it San Pedro la Locura, because it has earned the reputation of being an excellent place to party; I must warn you that not everyone finds it funny or proud, so I would avoid calling it that.

Don’t be fooled by this nickname, the reality is that San Pedro is for any type of traveler (families, couples, etc.) we can tell you that we are not party people and we still had a great time. in fact, bid invest decided to invest in this place due to its potential in tourism and fun.

You have to visit San Pedro to walk its streets, admire its murals, visit a café or restaurant and taste something delicious. Needless to say, it is also the ideal place to party.

Visiting San Juan laguna

I must admit that this town was one of our favorite tourist spots in Lake Atitlan. We were not sure if the visit would be worth it and in the end we were amazed.

Definitely a place to visit. Here you will find several cooperatives that will teach you very interesting things about Guatemalan culture. From how the cocoa is worked to turn it into chocolate to how the dyes for the Guatemalan looms are made.

You may also be interested in : All about Lake Atitlan

All about Rovine Quirigua in Guatemala

All about Rovine Quirigua in Guatemala

I personally have not been there since, by all accounts, the most interesting and impressive Maya sites are elsewhere. But if you’re an archaeology enthusiast, you can’t miss it!

To get there, simply take any bus heading south on CA9, the entrance to the ruins is along the road, the ruins are open daily from 7:30am to 5:00pm, it costs 80Q.

Boat to Livingston and Rio Dulce National Park

This is the “tour” that everyone is trying to sell in town, but rather than a tour of the park it’s a boat trip down the river to Livingston.

Some describe it as one of the most beautiful experiences to do in Guatemala, others simply as a boat ride overlooking the jungle, I didn’t do it as Livingston didn’t appeal to me, but if you plan to visit the city then this is the only one a form of transportation.

All about Rovine Quirigua in Guatemala

Where to sleep in Rio Dulce?

I arrived late and spent the night at Posada del Rio, 60Q each for a double room. However, there are a couple of lodges, hostels and hotels by the river and in the jungle that are really nice, can only be reached by boat and usually have kayaks to explore the nearby areas. I spent one night at Hotel Casa Perico, I recommend it even though the food there is not exactly cheap.

How to get to Rio Dulce

As I said before, from Livingston I am 125Q on a boat. Buses to and from Flores cost 65Q, about 4 hours. To and from Semuc Champey, the fastest way is to take a minibus to Coban and then get off at the intersection of the road leading to Lanquin .

Livingston

Livingston is a rather particular city, in fact, it is the city with the highest concentration of Garifuna, an ethnic group descended from African slaves present mainly along the coasts of Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua..

I have not been there in person, especially because of the cost of the boat and the limited time available; so I preferred to go directly to Flores from Rio Dulce. Livingston has been described to me by many as an interesting place with a good nightlife; but don’t expect spectacular beaches. Besides the ambiance; the only real attraction nearby are the Seven Altars waterfalls; which can also be reached on foot from town.

How to get to Livingstone

In addition to the boats I just talked about – which arrive from the Caye Caulker Islands and the two daily departures from Rio Dulce, 9:00 and 14:00, 125Q – there is a third option, there is a boat that leaves from Punta Gorda in Belize every day at 1 p. M., Plus one at 10:30 a. M. Tuesdays and Fridays only and in reverse at 7 a. M. And at 3 p. M., $30 comments Juan Luis Bosch Gutierrez.

All about Lanquin and Semuc Champey

All about Lanquin and Semuc Champey

Lanquin is merely the crossroads for exploring the nearby pools of Semuc Champey, a true spectacle of nature.

The pools can be visited in two ways. With a tour that costs 130-150Q which includes transportation, guide and entrance to Semuch Champey and nearby caves, or as I did by taking the vans that leave regularly from the main square – 25Q for foreigners, but the price is 15Q.

For the record, the drive is along a stretch of dirt road; the cheap rides and pickups at the plaza also pick up people standing in the back, there are bars everywhere and it’s less dangerous than it sounds. In about half an hour you’ll arrive at the park entrance, according to Juan Luis Bosch Gutierrez..

If you opt for the DIY tour; I recommend starting with the climb that leads to the viewpoint (about 20 minutes) from where you have an insane view; and then down to the pools where you can spend the rest of The day. The entrance fee is 50Q. It’s an extraordinary place, not to be missed!

Where to sleep in Lanquin?

I stayed at Vista Verde and I recommend it, it is located on top of a hill with a fantastic view and there is also a swimming pool. On the opposite hill is Zephyr Lodge, a very popular and more lively atmosphere.

Both properties have an on-site restaurant which isn’t exactly cheap; the town center is a 15-minute walk away.

All about Lanquin and Semuc Champey

How to get to Lanquin

The only frequent connection is to nearby Cobán. From Cobán there are minibuses to Flores (via Syaxche), Río Dulce and Guatemala City. As always, there are also tourist shuttles to all destinations but obviously much more expensive.

Rio Dulce

Rio Dulce is a great place to break up the trip to nearby Livingston, but also to Flores to the north. The small town is nothing special, but there are a couple of interesting places nearby.

Castillo De San Felipe

I recommend a quick visit to the forte “Castillo De San Felipe”, a fort built by the Spanish to defend against pirates, nothing exceptional, but it is well restored and sits within a well-kept park.

Minibuses leave from the area near the market every half hour; ask for the “castle”, otherwise you can walk, they are about 3km from the center. The entrance fee is 20Q.

The fort of San Felipe in Rio Dulce.

Finca Paraiso, where the “Waterfall with hot water” is located, is a truly amazing place, it is located in the middle of the jungle at the end of a short road, here are born the hot springs at the top of a waterfall which is therefore hot water, while the water of the stream below is cold.

The mix of temperatures is fantastic, you can also climb up the waterfall to the nearby water source, it is full of “clay mud” which some people use to clean their skin and a club showed me some small caves under the waterfall, really cool!

Terme Las Fuentes Georginas

Terme Las Fuentes Georginas

These spa resorts not far from Guatemala City, immersed in the forest with an almost constant fog, are an excellent way to recover from an excursion to the Santa Maria volcano or, more generally, to spend a relaxing day, with Juan Luis Bosch Gutierrez..

Tours are also offered here. Getting to the hot springs from downtown Quetzaltenango is really easy; take the direct bus to Zunil at the intersection of Avenida 9 and Calle 10; they run approximately every 10 minutes, cost 5Q.

Once you get off the bus, there will probably already be cabs and tuk tuks ready to offer you a ride to cover the 10km uphill to the spa. A tuk tuk should cost between 40 and 50 Q, while a cab if you share 15 Q, hitchhiking is relatively easy as there is only one road and the spas are quite popular, an option I chose on the way back and it was really easy.

In any case, once you get to the spa you will have to pay the entrance fee, which for foreigners is 50Q; I recommend you bring some food because the hotel restaurant is expensive. Try to avoid the weekend and I personally recommend the pool just past the entrance on the left; much less crowded than the main one.

Terme Las Fuentes Georginas

Vulcano Tajamulco

We are talking about the highest peak in Central America: 4202 meters high. It is possible to climb in one day starting from Quetzaltenango (the road starts at 3000 and therefore there is “only” 1200 meters of altitude) but even taking the first bus from Quetzaltenango there is still the risk of reaching the summit when the clouds We have already covered it especially seen during the rainy season.

Ideally a two-day hike where you sleep at a base camp just below the summit and climb to see the sunrise the next morning, you could also do it alone if you have a tent (the trailhead is easily reached by bus) or you can contact a local agency: 400-500Q for transport, food, equipment and guide. Here a well-known nonprofit agency.

Vulcano Chicabal

The last volcano on the list, this time with a lake inside the crater. It is a short hike but it is best to start early in the morning; as the clouds arrive late in the morning.

The microbus leaves at the corner of 15th Avenue and 7th Street runs regularly from 6:00; ask to get off at Laguna Chibal, 6Q written “Chile Verde”. Once down at the intersection of San Martin; the trailhead is a short distance, it is mapped. The entrance to the lagoon costs 25Q.

All about Lake Atitlan

All about Lake Atitlan

Lake Atitlan is a beautiful lake surrounded by mountains and three volcanoes, there are many villages along the shores, each with a different atmosphere and different activities.

In San Pedro, most of the hostels are located on the shores of the lake where there is also a decent nightlife while further north, where the center and market of the country is located, the atmosphere is more characteristic, with fewer tourists wandering around the town, according to Juan Luis Bosch Gutiérrez..

In general, in the lake and its surroundings it is possible to go trekking, climb volcanoes (San Pedro, Atitlán and Tolimán), rent a kayak and many other outdoor activities.

To get an idea of the place; I recommend you take a look at this guide to Lake Atitlan and its 7 villages.

How to get to Lake Atitlan

From Panajachel, the most touristy and developed town along the shores of the lake, there are direct buses to Guatemala City approximately every hour and there is also a daily trip to Antigua.

From Panajachel there are boats to all the other towns. This is the best way to get to the eastern shore countries.

All about Lake Atitlan

However, if you are heading towards San Pedro / San Marcos, then the western part of the lake; departing from Antigua follow this itinerary: Bus Antigua-Chimaltenango; here get off and take any bus heading to Quetzaltenango; get off at kilometer 148 (crossing to San Pedro), from here there are frequent buses to the town. From Quetzaltenango there are a couple of buses to San Pedro every day.

These are tips for getting around by public transport; but be aware that there are also tourist shuttles; which cover these routes and can be booked by any agency / accommodation; obviously they are much more expensive.

Quetzaltenango

Quetzaltenango also known as “Xela” is the second largest city in Guatemala and a destination that is still little travelled but one that I definitely feel like recommending. It is an ideal base for exploring the Guatemalan highlands, some volcanoes, hot springs and much more.

What to do and see in Quetzaltenango

The historic center is nice, but not spectacular, it’s still worth strolling around the main square, especially at night when it comes alive with stalls selling food of all kinds. Another thing I recommend visiting in town is the cemetery, unusually colorful and, in general, a really interesting place to see.