LAKE ATITLAN: THE CALDERA
Take a weekend break, three days and two nights to the majestic Lake Atitlan, upon arrival you will have an orientation walk around Panajachel, having the option for dinner and bar hop.
Next day we will head out to San Marcos la laguna and enjoy a Swim at a nature reserve and walk through the tiny pathways of the town famous for its alternative retreat style vibe. Afterwards you will be visiting San Juan la laguna. We will head out to a women's cooperative in which they have rescued the ancient Maya dyes to color their textiles, this is rescuing the ancient Maya culture before your eyes. We also visit a local chocolate factory owned by locals who get the cacao from the coast, then enjoy a local lunch at a traditional homestay style setting.
The next day we visit Chichicastenango the Capital of the Kiche people, you have the privilege to visit a Sacred ritual Mountain where you see Shamans doing ceremonies on a sacred Rock (altar) saved from the conquista times. The aim here is not the market, but visiting the Church in which Maya and Catholic rituals go on at the same time, then walking out form the market area to 'La Moreria' where you have and explanation of our traditional masks that we wear during Festivities. You will have the privilege to hold a mask that is more than 400 years old! After this experience we walk up the ritual mountain to see the Shamans doing their ceremonies on the Cerro de Pascual Abaj. After this, we continue on route to Antigua, back to the Colonial city.
This experience is perfect for nature lovers, people who love culture and traditions, and people who like textiles and souvenirs. We see some of the different towns around the lake with their unique traditions.
Morning: Depart Antigua, stop midway to Iximche maya site at Tecpan. 2 hours away from Antigua on the Panamerican highway.
Afternoon: After visiting the site, we have an option of lunch on route, (not inclued) then we arrive to Panajachel, check in to our hotel
Evening: Free to explore the town, and get a bite to eat at a local restaurant.
Morning: We depart by boat to the southern part of the lake, where we visit 2 towns. Famous for their textiles, coffee and traditions. then we head off to another town. to visit Maximon. a maya deity
Afternoon: We head to Santiago Atitlan, where we visit a maya deity Maximon. this is different to the one close to Antigua, this is the real Rilajmam Shaman represetnation statue. We also learn a bit of the civil war in this town. which is very famous for its traditions and vivid history up to recent times.
Evening: We are in back in Pana to enjoy the evening and head out to the town for a meal and a drink
Morning: We depart to Chichicastenango, largest indigenous market in mesoamerica, we visit the market then head back to Antigua.
Afternoon: On route to Antigua, we stop for lunch then arrive in the late afternoon