Luxury holidays in Lake Atitlán

Teal-tinted Lake Atitlán hides within southwestern Guatemala’s majestic flower-strewn mountains amid candy-coloured towns. Home to Central America’s native Mayan communities, Lake Atitlán is more than just a vast shimmering expanse. After a morning dip, dry off and head to the local markets in Panajachel, where local women wander with woven textiles ablaze with rich patterned colour, matching their traditional handmade skirts. Hugged by the Three Giants – volcanoes Atitlán, Tolimán and San Pedro – hiking options certainly abound with marvelling morning views as the sun rises over the lake’s calming waters, speckled with early rising paddle-boarders and swimmers alike.

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When to go

Lake Atitlán stuns all year round, though it may be best to avoid the rainy season – from May to late September – if you’re hoping to admire its natural sunlit beauty.

Getting there

  • Planes

    Fly to Guatemala’s main La Aurora Airport, where you can hop on a shuttle via Antigua for around five hours to reach Lake Atitlán’s surrounding town of Panajachel. Opt for a taxi or rental car if you’d rather avoid the shuttle’s Antigua detour; or kick things up a notch with a private 25-minute helicopter ride from the airport to the lake.
  • Automobiles

    Reach the lake by rental and once you’re there drive between the towns to discover the diverse beauty of southwestern Guatemala’s highlands. There’s no road between Tzununa and Panajachel, but you can still drive around the lake’s 75-mile parameter for impressive views and secluded shores.