I normally prefer to go on trips that will take me for a close encounter with nature that can also provide some king of physical challenge. But there are a few times when all I want is to relax and just lounge around in some beautiful place without having to do much effort.
One of those places where you can achieve such a thing here in Guatemala is the Lachuá Lagoon. It is a Cenote located right in the middle of the Lachua National Park in the northern region. When you approach the water you might be able to feel a bit of a weird smell caused by low levels of Sulphur in the water. That’s what gave this name its place in face Lachua is a Mayan word that means fetid water.
However what makes the Lagoon so special to me aside from its beauty is that it is located about 10 to 12 hours away from Guatemala City by car. So not a lot of people go for a visit and then there is the fact that due to the volcanic activity from the whole region the water is always warm.
As always I was traveling as part of a group. We decided to start our trip at 5am. It was a long log trip so we had to stow at least two times for a snack and to stretch our legs.
Since I didn’t know about how fat it would be by the time we stopped at Cobán town for one last time to get some snacks and do some walking, I was certain that we were almost there. But oooooh what a mistake. We still had about 4 hours of road ahead of us.
We finally got there at around 2:30pm.
These guys have pretty strict instructions that they give you before entering, which I personally think is great. That is how they have managed to keep the park so well taken care of. They also charge and entrance fee of Q50 (around $7).
The hike from the visitor’s center to the camping area only takes about 45 minutes and takes you along a well marked path, surrounded by a dense tropical forest. if you are lucky as we were you will come across howler monkeys, toads and butterflies.
The camping area is basically a well taken care of garden, with rustic, latrines. If you want to camp you wil have to pay Q10 ($1.50). There is also a small cabin with bunk beds where you can spend the night for Q50 (around $7). These are additional to the entrance fee.
We quickly set up our tents, changed our clothes and headed to the tiny dock to enjoy the last couple of hours of sun light while swimming a bit.
NOTE: If you want to come here, keep in mind that this is the natural habitat for crocodiles. It is safe as long as you follow the instructions that include: Not going further than the signs and not staying in the water after sunset.
Then we had dinner and went to sleep while listening to howler monkeys.
The next morning we woke up extra early for a one hour yoga class by our friend Barbara who is a Certified teacher. Then it was time for one last splash at the lagoon and to start the looong way back home.
On the way back we stopped by Cobán town again and had lunch at Kardamomus. It was delicious, I highly recommend it.