Welcome to Nebaj
Hidden in a remote fold of the Cuchumatanes mountains north of Sacapulas is the Triángulo Ixil (Ixil Triangle), a 2300-sq-km zone comprising the towns of Santa María Nebaj, San Juan Cotzal and San Gaspar Chajul, as well as dozens of outlying villages and hamlets. The local Ixil Maya people, though they suffered perhaps more than anybody in Guatemala's civil war, cling proudly to their traditions and speak the Ixil language. Nebaj women are celebrated for their beautiful purple, green and yellow pom-pommed hair braids, scarlet cortes, and their huipiles and rebozos (shawls) featuring bird and animal motifs. Nebaj is a good base for hiking – the three-day hike to Todos Santos is particularly lovely. While you're in town, visit the unexpectedly good museum dedicated to the region's history.