Antigua & Lago de Atitlan Guatemala
Replies: 16 - Last Post: Jul 7, 2013 9:14 AM Last Post By: hopefulist
Jun 20, 2013 7:23 PM
Antigua & Lago de Atitlan GuatemalaHolaa everyone!
I will be traveling to Guatemala in the near future. I plan on going to Antigua and Lago de Atitlan. Few questions.
1)I will be arriving in Guatemala City by bus later in the day and will need to crash there for the night. Recommendations on where to stay in the city or close by?
2 )What’s the best means of transportation from the city to Lago de Atitlan? Has anyone traveled this before? Where did you get the bus? How long was the bus ride?
3) After being in Lago de Atitlan I need to then travel to Antigua. Any details on transportation that you could give me? How long was the bus ride?
4) Also hotels/hostels recommendations to stay at in BOTH Lago de Atitlan and Antigua?
5) Best place to go in Lago de Atitlan?
When answering please indicate number in which you are responding too!
Thank you in advance!!!
Jun 21, 2013 1:40 AM
11) If you want to explore in Guatemala, others can recommend lodging downtown. If you just want to crash for the night near the airport and head out the next day, here are 2 recommended places that offer free airport shuttles and breakfast in the morning; the 1st is budget, the 2nd midrange, both great value:
4) Here are links to my favorite hotels in Antigua and on Atitlán.
Panajachel: Mario's Rooms (502) 7762-2370 (dial 011 first from the US, don't expect English). I picked up a business card when I was there last summer that gives this email address but I haven’t used it: email@example.com
San Pedro La Laguna (my favorite town on the lake):
http://hotel-sakcari.com/ and http://www.mikasohotel.com/
My photo collections are here
with links to my blogs, travelogues, and review sites on the main page of each collection. Happy trails!
Jun 21, 2013 6:35 AM
Jun 21, 2013 5:16 PM
Jun 21, 2013 9:18 PM
Jun 22, 2013 4:15 PM
51Recommendations on where to stay in the city or close by? -- Marianna's Petit Hotel is literally 2 mins from the airport. It is about 40 dollars and includes breakfast and a free shuttle to airport. It is actually a house with rented rooms. The owner is an ex pilot and the house is like a flight museum (he was Army Air Force). The owners are warm and friendly, the bathrooms and rooms are spotless, the food is good. I liked it, even though it was more than we were used to spending. It is on the web.
2 )What’s the best means of transportation from the city to Lago de Atitlan? -- depends on what you want. You want a solo direct secure and faster ride, get a taxi. Unsure of the price My guess is about 40 dollars. If you want a direct or almost direct run with other gringos, take a chartered minivan. Seats are about 20 dollars. You have several travel agencis in Panajachel or your motel will arrange it.
Has anyone traveled this before? Several times
Where did you get the bus? There is no direct bus from Pana to Guate. The best route is to go Los Encuentros/Solola and change buses. Be prepared to change a few times.
How long was the bus ride? Be prepared to spend all day. It is about a third of the price of a chartered seat in a van, and far far far more colorful.... and crowded.
3) After being in Lago de Atitlan I need to then travel to Antigua. Any details on transportation that you could give me? How long was the bus ride? Antigua is a stop on the way into Guate. It is about a 2 hour ride direct.
4) Also hotels/hostels recommendations to stay at in BOTH Lago de Atitlan and Antigua? There are hotels/hostals that ring the lake. You can get everything from 2 dollar a night stays in villages like Jaibalito to 100 dollar a night and up 5 star hotels. Just depends on what you want. I just returned after a 35 year hiatus (I hitchiked thru Guatemala twice as a kid) and found Panajachel a revolting tourist trap. We stayed in Posada Los Encuentros, a nice clean little hotel just over the bridge on Santander (the main street). 10 min walk. Lots of hotels there. I would go in, go straight to the dock at the end (take a tuk tuk for 10Qs if you have a bunch of bags or are ragged out) and take a boat. My recs are either to San Pedro if you are a backpacker and there to party, or Jaibailito, either to the town itself if you want low budget or to Casa Del Mundo if you want a nice clean and more pricey place. Other people will doubtless have other recs, but those are mine.
Antigua residence rec is Casa Cristina. Small but clean and extremely friendly and helpful. Very highly recommended. I paid online with Paypal, and then broke my ankle severely. I emailed and told them I could not come at the last minute. They did not refund the paypal pmt, and then NINE MONTHS LATER I came down, and the owner recognized my name and told me the room was free as I had already paid for it! The owner's daughter studied at Boston U and has functionally no accent to her English. The woman who owns it is married to a German engineer and has lived all over the world. VERY VERY nice people.
5) Best place to go in Lago de Atitlan? -- I would go to the coffe plantation in San Juan, the textile cooperative in San Juan, the artist gallery (again, San Juan), the village of Jaibalito, the nature preserve at Panajachel, hike the (several embarkation spots, ask around). Also you should catch the crafts market at Chichicastenango and the produce market at Solola
Enjoy. It is a wonderful place.
Jun 22, 2013 7:19 PM
Jun 22, 2013 7:27 PM
Jun 22, 2013 7:35 PM
Jun 22, 2013 8:02 PM
Jun 22, 2013 11:50 PM
Jun 25, 2013 7:10 PM
Jul 6, 2013 3:00 PM
Jul 6, 2013 3:13 PM
13ksagnew - Those share shuttles can be pretty miserable - stuffy and packed to the gills. They often spend a half hour or more (our record was nearly an hour and a half!) circling around in Antigua picking up other clients before heading out from there; they can take hours longer than a private shuttle straight from the airport would. Certainly much more expensive but worth the extra cash if you have it to spend.
Last time I arranged a private driver (from Antigua to Pana in March) he was friendly and outgoing and I loved getting my Spanish gears turning on the way to the lake. I chose a share shuttle for the return trip (Pana to near the airport) and it was tightly packed so less comfortable and took more than 5 hours due to the stop in Antigua and bad traffic in GC.
Jul 6, 2013 6:43 PM
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