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PanajachelGuatemala

Wildlife spotting, trekking in the Guatemalan highlands and a 16th-century church make this lakeside town a magnet for outdoor types and cultural enthusiasts.

Panajachel is a town on the shores of Lake Atitlán, in Guatemala's western highlands. Volcano scenery, wildlife, nightclubs and Mayan culture and traditions, means there is always something to see and do here.

Enjoy a scenic walk along the lake shore or for something more strenuous, hike to the top of one of the volcanoes surrounding the lake. The Atitlán Nature Reserve to the north of the town is a good place to see butterflies, monkeys, raccoons and other wildlife. Walk through its oak forests, coffee groves, along nature trails and by a waterfall. Take the opportunity to fly above the tree tops on a zip-line tour, then cool off on the sanctuary’s private beach. Book a hotel room or camping space if you want to stay at the reserve for more than one day.

Then turn your attention to some of Panajachel’s cultural attractions. See lots of examples of indigenous folk art at La Galeria. The gallery also showcases local and international contemporary art. Stop off at the Casa Cakchiquel for its indigenous crafts shop and the exhibition of old photographs of the area. The cultural center was once a hotel and locals will tell you about famous former guests such as the writer Aldous Huxley and Che Guevara.

While Panajachel is more developed than many other towns around Lake Atitlán, you can still find several historic buildings. They include the Church of St. Francis of Assisi, built by Franciscans in the 16th century. Parts of the original structure remain to this day.

In the evening, head for Calle Santander, the main street where there are numerous bars and restaurants serving local dishes. There is always plenty on offer for those missing the flavors of home. Partygoers are catered for in Panajachel's discos.

Panajachel can be reached by bus from several cities including Guatemala City and Antigua. If you are in a rental car, follow the Pan-American Highway. Accommodation for all budgets can be found throughout the town.

The combination of natural beauty, historic architecture and indigenous culture make Panajachel a great spot for a vacation.

Top Hotels in Panajachel

Porta Hotel del Lago
Porta Hotel del Lago
3.5 out of 5
2a Avenida 06-17 Zona 2, Panajachel, Solola
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is NT$2,923 per night from Jan 18 to Jan 19

This family-friendly Panajachel hotel is located on a lake, within a 5-minute walk of Multiple Use Area Lake Atitlan Basin and La Galeria. Azul Maya Archaeological ...

4/5Very Good! (405 reviews)

"breakfast was excellent priced for the budget minded individuals . Views are breath taking would go back in a heart beat. Waling distance from all shops and Supermarket."…"

Reviewed on 2020/3/23

Porta Hotel del Lago
Regis Hotel & Spa
Regis Hotel & Spa
3.5 out of 5
3a avenida 3-47 zona 2, Panajachel, Solola
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is NT$1,392 per night from Jan 18 to Jan 19

This family-friendly Panajachel hotel is located on a lake, within a 5-minute walk of Multiple Use Area Lake Atitlan Basin, La Galeria, and Casa Cakchiquel Arts ...

4.2/5Excellent! (315 reviews)

"We found this hotel very disappointing and checked out. The room was dingy and we had no patio worth sitting on. The hit spring tubs are not from a hit spring rather heated water. It is off the main street which is loud.....not the peaceful setting we had en isioned"…"

Reviewed on 2020/2/5

Regis Hotel & Spa
Selina Atitlan
Selina Atitlan
2.5 out of 5
Calle del Embarcadero Zona 2, Panajachel, Solola
The price is NT$1,009 per night from Jan 19 to Jan 20

Situated in Panajachel, this hostel is within a 5-minute walk of Multiple Use Area Lake Atitlan Basin and Azul Maya Archaeological Museum. Casa Cakchiquel Arts ...

4.1/5Very Good! (60 reviews)

"Muy recomendado. Buena ubicación, habitaciones limpias, cómodas y amplias."…"

Reviewed on 2021/1/10

Selina Atitlan
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Vacation Rentals in Panajachel

Villas Jucanya
Villas Jucanya
3.5 out of 5
Barrio Jucanya, Calle del Lago, Frente al Lago (juegos infantiles), Panajachel, Solola
The price is NT$4,414 per night from Jan 18 to Jan 19

Situated in Panajachel, this beach vacation home is within a 15-minute walk of Multiple Use Area Lake Atitlan Basin and La Galeria. Casa Cakchiquel Arts Center ...

4.6/5Exceptional! (19 reviews)

"It’s a beautiful setting that feels natural and safe."…"

Reviewed on 2020/10/21

Villas Jucanya
Luxury Villas Atitlan
Luxury Villas Atitlan
3 out of 5
Bahia de San Buena Aventura, Panajachel, Solola

Situated in Panajachel, this apartment building is within 1 mi (2 km) of Multiple Use Area Lake Atitlan Basin and Casa Cakchiquel Arts Center. Azul Maya Archaeological ...

3.3/5 (16 reviews)

"What a view! Beautiful space. Nice swimming pool."…"

Reviewed on 2020/1/27

Luxury Villas Atitlan
Villas B'alam Ya
Villas B'alam Ya
3.5 out of 5
Km. 4 Carretera s Sta. Catarina Palopó, Santa Catarina Palopó, Panajachel, Solola

Situated in Panajachel, this beach villa is within 2 mi (3 km) of Multiple Use Area Lake Atitlan Basin, La Galeria, and Casa Cakchiquel Arts Center. Church of ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (51 reviews)

"Perfect in every way. The view and accommodations were beyond expectation. I stayed in the Villa Jade and Bambu. Highly recommend either."…"

Reviewed on 2019/5/15

Villas B'alam Ya
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Panajachel

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Reviews of Panajachel

4.3

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
55
5 - Excellent 45.833333333333336%
4 - Good
52
4 - Good 43.333333333333336%
3 - Okay
9
3 - Okay 7.5%
2 - Disappointing
4
2 - Disappointing 3.3333333333333335%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Mar 3, 2020

The most touristy place on the lake. Very walkable, and the waterfront area was nice.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Feb 12, 2020

Nice place to visit with plenty of shopping, dining, sightseeing. Just be safe when traveling around and I wouldn’t suggest walking around the area (Outside of your resort/hotel) at night.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Feb 7, 2020

Panajachel is an okay town, but what makes it special was the stay at Jenna's B&B.

3/5 - Okay

Verified traveler

Nov 21, 2019

Nice view of the Volcanoes and Lake Atitlan, and a good launch point trips to other towns around the lake.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Oct 8, 2019

Besides been an excellent place to relax, its natural beauty enhances a peaceful rest.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Oct 5, 2019

Wonderful Place to relax and enjoy the beautiful nature of Guatemala!

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