Set in an impressive fertile valley and surrounded by giant volcanoes, Antigua is the best that Guatemala has to offer. The cobbled streets are lined with superb Spanish colonial architecture and give a feeling of travelling back in time.
Founded in 1543, Antigua was the capital of the country until a devastating earthquake in 1773 caused the rulers to move, though it continues to be the cultural centre of the country.
Aside from the enchanting atmosphere and setting, Antigua has many fine places of interest and numerous religious buildings: 22 churches, 14 convents and 11 monasteries in various states of restoration.
Antigua is close to the Capital and international airport, making it an ideal start and end point to your trip to Guatemala.
THINGS TO SEE AND DO
Below are some examples of what you can do, though we can tailor any itinerary to suit your interests.
Antigua half day city tour. Included in this tour is a visit to the beautiful Casa Santo Domingo Church and Monastery as well as the Las Capuchinas Convent with its impressive cloisters.
Pacaya Volcano. If you wish to climb a volcano this is one of the best places to do it. Pacaya and Acatenango Volcanoes are within easy reach. The volcanoes vary in difficulty and after a challenging climb you’ll be rewarded with stunning views along with stark lunar landscape. Discuss the best options for your trek with us.
Local Valley tour. Take a short trip through the scenic valley of Antigua to admire the landscape and visit impressive sites such Ciudad Vieja or Santa Maria de Jesus. You can also choose a guided hike or cycle around the valley.
Comalapa. Comalapa, a highland town surrounded by 20 villages, at the heart of which are the Cakchiqel people (one of the many different Indian tribes of Maya people). Tuesdays and Fridays, they come from their villages with their fruits, vegetables & other foods products to the San Juan Comalapa Marketplace to sell their wares & buy the day's needs. Comalapa is well known for it's history of indigenous painters and for the famous mural, depicting Guatemala's history, painted by the children of Comalapa on the cemetry wall to celebrate the Peace Treaty of 1996.
Recommended lodges in this area:
As with the best places to stay in any town, Posada del Angel is located close to the central area, has only 7 rooms and is run by friendly and efficient staff. This is one of our favourite places in Antigua because it contains all you need and nothing you don’t
This small hotel is well positioned close to the centre of town. The small entrance leads you through a small water fountain and into the hotel, which has been beautifully decorated with soft furnishings and local art