Volcán Cruz Quemada

The Pacific Slope

This dormant volcano towers 1700m over the tiny village of Santa María Ixhuatán at its base. Coffee plantations reach about one third of the way up its slopes. The summit, littered with radio towers, offers excellent views of the land running down to the coast, the Cerro La Consulta mountain range and the nearby Tecuamburro volcanic complex. From Santa María it's an easy-to-moderate climb to the top that should take about three hours.

The 12km hike is possible to do on your own, asking for plenty of directions along the way. Alternatively, guides can be hired in Santa María – ask at the taxi stand on the main square.

To get to Santa María, catch a minibus (Q8, 25 minutes) from Cuilapa.