Once a spot that tourists passed through, Cobán has become a destination in its own right and one of the best in the area (outside Guatemala City) for decent food, a range of hotels and activities. For tourists it remains a great hub for taking in the surrounding natural wonders – such as Semuc Champey – in a series of day trips.
The town was once the center of Tezulutlán (Tierra de Guerra, or 'Land of War'), a stronghold of the Rabinal Maya.
In the 19th century, when German immigrants moved in and founded vast coffee and cardamom fincas (plantations), Cobán took on the aspect of a German mountain town, as the finca owners built town residences. The era of German cultural and economic domination ended during WWII, when the USA prevailed upon the Guatemalan government to deport the powerful finca owners, many of whom actively supported the Nazis.
These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Cobán.
Whether it’s a guided tour of a historic landmark, private tasting of local delicacies, or an off-road adventure — explore the best experiences in Cobán.