Guatemala Tourist Destinations: Guatemala is one of those rare finds, with a good mix of travel options to satisfy adventurers, culture seekers, beach worshipers, and travelers looking for a little relaxation.
The country is a cultural hot spot in Central America, from the colonial architecture and cobbled streets of Antigua Guatemala to the Maya ruins of Tikal.
The small town of the Highlands and the shores of the beautiful Lake Atitlán offer the chance for unique cultural experiences.
Tropical forests, active volcanoes, mountain lakes, cloud forests, coral reefs, and beaches will allure nature lovers.
If you head down to the shores, you’ll encounter beaches ideal for relaxing in a hammock and finding solitude. There are markets for local goods for sale throughout the country, especially clothing; they only work on certain days of the week.
Explore the best places to see in this beautiful country with our list of the top best tourist attractions in Guatemala. Book your flight tickets with Spirit Airlines Reservations, which offers cheap flight tickets, and explore the top five Guatemala Tourist Destinations.
Explore Top Five Guatemala Tourist Destinations
1. Mayan Ruins of Tikal
The moist jungle of northern Guatemala, near the border with Belize.
This is one of the largest archaeological sites in Central America.
The fresh-looking ruined city of Tikal is one of the best places to see in Guatemala to learn about Mayan culture.
Tikal was occupied between about 600 BC and 900 AD.
And displays more than 3,000 structures, ranging from pyramids and temples to plazas and an acropolis.
It was one of the most important urban Maya centers for over a thousand years and is one of the largest Maya archaeological sites of its time still in existence today.
The surrounding environment enhanced the visitor’s experience. The pyramids rise vertically atop a lush canopy of forest populated by birds, monkeys, and other wildlife.
Tikal National Park, which surrounds the ruins, is a biosphere reserve, protecting rainforest and wildlife habitat.
Monkeys are prevalent in Tikal. You will definitely see spider monkeys and, if you don’t see howler monkeys, you will definitely hear them.
2. Antigua Guatemala
If you are looking for a city to settle in for a while, this is the place you can go.
With quality hotels at reasonable rates, trendy restaurants serving excellent cuisine, and plenty of things to do, it’s easy to fill your day here.
Antigua Guatemala generally referred to simply as Antigua, is one of the tourist attractions of Guatemala and surely one of the most beautiful cities in Central America.
Surrounded by three volcanoes, this former capital of Guatemala offers a unique glimpse of a city immaculate with modern concrete buildings and tall buildings.
The cobblestone streets are lined with old colonial buildings, some of which show evidence of earthquakes that have contributed to the city’s history.
There are incredible churches and monasteries everywhere in the center of the old city.
While many buildings have been fully restored, some reveal cracks caused by past earthquakes, and some have turned into ruins.
In most cases, the ruins have been creatively incorporated into more recently constructed buildings, some of which are now hotels.
The city has interesting museums as well as beautiful old monasteries that are open to visitors.
3- Lake Atitlán (Lago de Atitlán)
Often described as the most beautiful lake in the world, Lake Atitlán is another destination where travelers stop by.
You can easily spend a week or more exploring the small towns and villages that surround the lake.
Lake Atitlán is situated in the high country.
Less than a two-hour drive from Guatemala City and less than an hour and a half from Antigua.
It sits in a volcanic crater 1,538 meters above sea level and is surrounded by hills and volcanoes, and many of the shore villages are accessible only by boat.
The main entrance point is the city of Panajachel.
After exploring the main street with all kinds of vendors selling their blankets and goods in the stalls and alleys, make your way to the waterfront to catch a water taxi.
Boats line up here to take passengers to the villages of San Pedro, Santiago Atitlán, San Andrés Semetabaz, Santa Catarina Palopo, San Lucas Toliman, and even small secondary villages or private hotels.
Each village is well-known for something different, but most have markets and local crafts.
Over the years, Atitlán has attracted many expatriates interested in alternative lifestyles.
Spiritual or New Age centers offer everything from yoga to spiritual activities. If you are considering learning Spanish, there are schools available and very reasonably priced.
4- Chichicastenango Market
The isolated Chichicastenango, known locally as “Chichi”, is a large city surrounded by valleys and mountains.
The sleeping cobblestone streets come alive on Thursdays and Sundays.
This is one of the biggest and busiest markets in Guatemala.
This is a local people’s market, which regularly sells everyday goods, vegetables, and specialty garments.
Vendors come from far and wide for this market, which makes it a great opportunity for sightseeing and photography enthusiasts.
Chichicastenango is a 1.5-hour bus ride from Panajachel, making it a relaxed day trip from Lake Atitlán. It takes about 2h30 from Guatemala City and 3h30 from Antigua.
Quetzaltenango, the second-largest city in Guatemala, is the Southwest Mall of Guatemala.
More commonly called Xela, the city’s main landmarks are the Neoclassical buildings in and around Parque Centro America.
Most of these buildings, apart from the cathedral, stem from the 19th-century era when Xela was a major trading and artistic community.
Major reasons to visit Quetzaltenango include studying Spanish and hiking the nearby mountains. Climbing volcano Tajumulco, the highest peak in Central America, is one of the more adventurous options.
In addition, Quetzaltenango is a clean and safe city.
As well as it also makes sure you don’t get a mosquito at a height of 2333 meters.
Also, consider travel insurance while planning your trip. Travel insurance helps you in unforeseen situations.
- Complete Protection.
- Personal Accidents.
- Loss of Baggage.
- Passport Loss.
- Health Cover.
- Dental Treatment.
- Hospital Daily Allowance.
- Baggage Issues.