Travel Experta’s Interesting Facts – Panajachel, Lake Atitlan – Guatemala

“Pana,” as it’s known to locals, is the biggest hippie town south of California. It is located on the banks of Lake Atitlan in central Guatemala. Panajachel is all about de-stressing and chilling out. Many of the full-time residents are Americans and Europeans who moved to Panajachel years or decades ago, seeking a simpler life.

Don’t forget to check out more info about which places to go when you visit Guatemala.

It’s not a very large town, and if you were to remove restaurants, cafes, bars and curio shops, you’d be left with some churches, a few dusty streets and the municipal building. It is a great home place for exploring the region.

Where is it?

See the map

What do do?

  • Boat tours
  • Experience its night life
  • See the local art galleries
  • Take a chilly dip in the lake
  • Rent a motorcycle or a bike
  • Learn Spanish in one of its many Spanish schools
  • Visit the Hot Springs
  • Lake Kayaking
  • Scuba diving

Dale un vistazo a la más información sobre cómo lograr unas perfectas vacaciones en Guatemala.

Where to go

  • Santiago Atitlan
  • Santa Cararina Palopo
  • San Antonio Palopo
  • And the rest of less popular villages around the lake
  • The natural private reserve in the Valley of Buanaventura

Some History

The shores of the Atitlan Lake where Panajachel is located was once the scenario for a battle between the Spaniards and their Cakchiquel against the Tzutuhils. The Spaniards won and soon after that they set up a church and monastery in Panajachel and used the town as a center for converting the Indians of the region to the Catholic faith. The original façade of the church stills stands, and is one of the gems of the colonial style in Guatemala.

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About Marina Kuperman Villatoro

Marina Kuperman Villatoro CEO of, a travel resource site to inspire families to travel with kids of all ages. Marina has been an expat 10+ years in Central America raising 2 boys in a multicultural, trilingual household. She travels all over the world with her family to give first hand experiences of where to eat, stay and play with kids. Needless to say, it’s never boring! Join Marina on Facebook and Twitter for more unique and boutique family travel!

2 Responses to Travel Experta’s Interesting Facts – Panajachel, Lake Atitlan – Guatemala

  1. amaka says:

    uhhhhhhhh this is good stuff

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