What’s it Like to Visit Auto Safari Chapin in Guatemala?

Surprise, surprise! Guatemala has one of the best safaris my family and I’ve been to, and I can honestly say we’ve been to a lot. Too many actually. I’m almost over visiting animal parks at times, but Auto Safari Chapin was just what we needed.

If you’re an animal lover, adventure seeker, or simply curious about unique experiences, Auto Safari Chapin in Guatemala is a must-visit destination.

The Auto Safari Chapin is located in Escuintla, and it offers a unique blend of wildlife encounters, stunning landscapes, and family-friendly activities, I can’t put into words how incredible this place is and how good an addition to any bucket list it is!

Useful information for Auto Safari Chapin

  • Address: Km. 87.5 Road to Taxisco, Guanagazapa Escuintla, Guatemala
  • Phone: (+502) 3603-2140 (Whatsapp) -(502) 2425-4935 or 5517-1705 (Park)
  • Email:
  • Price: Q.75.00 ($10) for adults and kids.
  • If you don’t have a car, don’t worry! They have a safari bus to drive you through the park.

What to do and see at Auto Safari Chapin?

When we first heard about it, I really was not expecting much, but Auto Safari Chapin truly offers an immersive safari experience like no other. Not only that, it actually has several other activities, spaces, and different ways to interact with the animals.

Make sure to keep your camera ready, as you drive through the park the curious animals literally come up to your car. At times it can really be frightening.

Here’s what Auto Safari Chapin Offers:

Enjoy the Pit stop

One of the biggest draws of Auto Safari Chapin is that it’s not all in-car driving. About mid point, there is a great playground to walk around.

It’s a great addition, breathe fresh air, stretch your legs, and even have some viewpoints to see the animals.

Two giraffes under a gigant umberella in autosafari chapin guatemala
My favorite part of Auto Safari Chapin is how everything is so well cared for, the animals looked healthy and you can even feed them for a bit of extra money.

Enjoy the Different Pathways

After you’re done with the driving of the safari, the other half of the fun begins.

You’ll find a couple of trails and walkways, which will take you to the other part of the park where you will find several other attractions. Walking those trails is part of the fun, they feel cozy and natural.

Check out the Zoo

After the safari you can go to the Zoo, yes, there is an actual zoo too. There you will large cages to visit as well as different animals.

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Try the Boat Tour and Monkey Island

While there are monkeys there you won’t find them since they have their own habitat. Yes, the luckiest of all are the monkeys, they seem to have it better than the rest. They have their own island!

Once you’re done with the safari drive and walking the zoo, there is still more fun to be had. Take the boat ride to Monkey Island and other animals that you haven’t seen before.

monkeys near the water in autosafari chapin
My kids and husband favorite part of the trip was definitely the boat trip, we got to see the monkeys on a island!

Feeding Opportunities

Yes, you should not miss the chance to hand-feed some of the animals, but it has an extra cost and can be done only at certain times of the day.

For example, you can feed the giraffes for Q10 (like $2). It’s an exhilarating experience that brings you closer to nature, worth trying out.

a giraffe eating in safari chapin guatemala
Guatemala is a super green and nature-friendly country but seeing the Guatemalan wildlife up close in a controlled environment is priceless.

Pony Rides

If you’re lucky enough, some days you will find pony rides available and kids can enjoy a short and safe activity that’s guided by friendly and professional staff.

It’s a memorable experience for little adventurers.

Try Petting an Animal in the Zoo

Both adults and kids can get to pet goats, rabbits, and other gentle animals at the petting zoo. You need to ask the staff if this is available first, please, don’t go touching all the animals you see around.

I know children love interacting with their furry friends, but make sure it’s under the staff’s supervision.

woman and kid watching animals in Auto Safari Chapin
Auto Safari Chapin thought about everything, there are small stops along the way for you to rest and stretch your legs.

Check out the Playground

At the center of the safari, you will find a huge area, there is also a playground for kids to enjoy. It has several structures, like a pool, swings, slides, and climbing structures.

Let the kids burn off energy at the playground.

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Picnic Areas and Restaurants

Of course, eating is a huge part of the experience and fortunately, you can choose between packing your own picnic or dining at the park’s restaurants.

While the restaurant is not the best it’s certainly not bad, it’s a bit expensive compared to the rest of the prices in the country but I guess it’s due to the location.

You can expect to pay Q60 (around $8) for a hamburger, french fries and a drink. But you get the experience and you get to enjoy your meal with a view of the scenic surroundings.

people in the playground and pool area of safari chapin guatemala

How to Get to Auto Safari Chapin?

Auto Safari Chapin is conveniently located in Escuintla, just a short drive from Guatemala City and Antigua, it’s like 1 hour away by car, which makes it perfect for a day trip from Antigua.

You can get there by taxi, or taking a shuttle (I don’t recommend you take the public bus, they are crowded and loud). Also, you can get there by using Uber, which is available in Guatemala and a lot of tourists feel safer using it.

On the other hand, I highly recommend you rent a car and drive there, it’s not complicated. You can follow these steps to reach the park:

Directions from Guatemala City:

  • Head south on the CA-9 highway.
  • Take the exit toward Escuintla.
  • Follow signs to Auto Safari Chapin.
  • Arrive at the entrance and get ready for adventure!
the bus of Auto Safari Chapin Guatemala
Another big draw of Auto Safari Chapin is they have their own cars (small buses) to take people who got there without a car or people that doesn’t want to drive through the park by thenselves.

Things to Pack

Yes, there are things you NEED to pack, since there’s a portion of the adventure done on food and even a boat tour, it’s better to come to the safari prepared!

The first thing and most important: walking around can be tiring, so bring water and snacks.

The second thing: make sure to pack binoculars, that way you can spot distant animals.

The Third one: Don’t forget your camera or smartphone to capture those memorable moments. Remember to turn off the flash to avoid startling the animals.

Here’s a quick list of the things you NEED to bring:

  • Water
  • Sun protector
  • Insect Repellent (used it BEFORE arriving)
  • Binoculars
  • Camera
  • First Aid Kit
  • Sun hat
  • Sun Glasses
an ostrich near a car in Auto Safaria Chapin
I was surprised how some animals got super close to our car, this ostrich was more than curious and come by to say hi.

Tips I wish I had known before my visit

Visiting auto safaris and zoos can be an exciting, educational, and a pretty straightforward experience for people of all ages, but there are several things I wish I had known before my visit there

So, here’s how to have an unforgettable safari or zoo adventure:

1. Plan Ahead

I was living in Antigua at the moment of my visit, and the Auto Safari Chapin is only 1h away from there, so I guess that’s why we didn’t overthink it.

But before heading to the safari or zoo, do some research. Find out the opening hours, ticket prices, and any special events or feeding times.

If you can, consider booking tickets online to avoid long queues at the entrance. Also, check the weather forecast!

2. Arrive Early

Arriving early is always a good practice and has several advantages. You’ll beat the crowds, have better chances of seeing active animals, and enjoy cooler temperatures.

Plus, early mornings are when many animals are most active.

monkeys on a island in auto safari chapin boat tour

3. Respect the Animals

If you with you own car or use the Auto Safari Chapin bus to go through the park, make sure to keep a safe distance from the animals, and don’t try to pet them without supervision.

Follow any guidelines provided by the staff.

Avoid loud noises, sudden movements, and feeding the animals unless allowed. Remember that these creatures are wild and deserve our respect.

4. Learn About Conservation

Many zoos and safaris focus on conservation efforts, and Auto Safari Chapin is not different. So, take the time to read about the species you encounter and learn about their habitats, threats, and what’s being done to protect them.

Your visit contributes to these conservation initiatives.


Is Auto Safari Chapin suitable for young children?

Absolutely yes! The ride, the other attractions of the park, the animals and the playground make it a great family outing.

Can I bring my own food?

Yes, you can pack a picnic and enjoy it at one of the designated areas.

Are there guided tours?

Yes, if you don’t have a car, they have a bus that will take you through the park with a professional, but it’s NOT a guided tour.
While there are no official guided tours, the park provides informative signs and maps.

What’s the best time to visit?

The dry season is always the best time to visit the country, make sure to go to the safari during Mornings and late afternoons offer pleasant weather and optimal animal activity.

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Last Updated on July 7, 2024

3 thoughts on “What’s it Like to Visit Auto Safari Chapin in Guatemala?

  1. It’s been 15 years since I have been in a auto safari. I was so much younger and so scared. Still I remember it was fun. It-s a pity I never got to do it again. Maybe sometime in the future… Auto Safari Chapin sounds like a great choice.

    1. Laura, how cool you did this! Very few people, who don’t spend a lot of time in Guatemala visit this safari. Funny enough, the first time I did it was 13 years ago. It was great going back with my kids.

  2. I love safaris like this! It makes a safari accessible for those of us that can’t travel to Africa.

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