Arco de Santa Catalina

Top choice in Antigua

The Arco de Santa Catalina is Antigua's most iconic monument, and an early-morning or late-afternoon photo opportunity framing Volcán Agua through its arch is an essential part of any visit to the town. It was built in 1694 to enable nuns from the Santa Catalina convent to cross the street without being seen; the clock tower is a 19th-century add-on.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Antigua attractions

1. Convento de Santa Teresa


Until recently the city prison, this edifice was initially built as a convent for the Carmelite order from Lima, Peru. Much of the interior was shattered…

2. Iglesia Merced


At the northern end of 5a Av is La Merced – a striking yellow building trimmed with white plaster filigree. Its facade is one of the most beautiful in…

3. La Antigua Galería de Arte

0.11 MILES

Displaying works by more than 70 Guatemalan artists in the halls and patio of a colonial mansion, Antigua's premier art gallery merits an extended visit…

5. Iglesia El Carmen

0.16 MILES

The church is not open to the public, but the partially destroyed facade with its multiple carved columns is a marvel. What we see today is what's left of…

6. Museo del Libro Antiguo

0.18 MILES

The fascinating Museo del Libro Antiguo showcases the greatest hits of the early days of Guatemalan printing, plus a replica of Guatemala's first printing…

7. Palacio del Ayuntamiento

0.18 MILES

This double-decker structure on the north side of the park dates from the 18th century. Besides town offices, the palace houses the Museo del Libro…

8. Convento de Capuchinas


Inaugurated in 1736 by nuns from Madrid, the convent of Las Capuchinas was seriously damaged by the 1773 earthquake and thereafter abandoned. Thanks to…