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Chichicastenango
Chichicastenango

Chichicastenango

Btw 7a & 8a Calle

The Basics

Chichicastenango is easy to visit on a day trip from Guatemala City, Antigua, or Lake Atitlán. Check out the museums, and wander around Central America’s largest market. Take a look at the colorful murals steeped in symbolism, and experience a Maya tradition such as a fire cleansing ceremony (performed by a shaman). Tack on a stop at the nearby archeological site of Iximche, the last Maya capital before the Spanish conquest.

If you have more time, multi-day tours explore the stunning volcano-rimmed shores of Lake Atitlán, the colonial architecture and fascinating history of the UNESCO-listed city of Antigua, or even farther afield, the Maya ruins in Tikal National Park.

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Chichicastenango and Panajachel Day Trip from Antigua
Chichicastenango and Panajachel Day Trip from Antigua
star-4.5
$76.93 per adult
Traveler Favorite
I’d do this again
My friend and I really enjoyed this activity. Our guide Carmen was really cool and full of knowledge. I would definitely book this tour again. I learned a lot, saw a lot, and I didn’t feel like a tourist (lol). The market was much more crowded than I expected, but that was a part of the authentic experience I was hoping for. My only regret is not stopping to buy mementos.
Taneal_C, Nov 2021

Recent reviews from experiences in Panajachel

star-5
Fantastic!
Linda_A, Oct 2021
Chichicastenango and Panajachel Day Trip from Antigua
I had my tour on October 24, 2021 and it was amazing! My guide picked me up on time. He was very knowledgeable about the towns and the country and the people. I learned so much. We visited the markets, the waterfall, the towns and I even met some of the Mayan people. What an incredible experience! 5 out of 5 I would highly recommend!
star-5
Pana and lake Atitlan tour...
peter_w, Jul 2021
Tour To Chichicastenango, An Ancestral Mayan Market + Panajachel
Great tour with Winston...he was the best....He had a great knowledge of the area and explained it well...
star-5
GREAT TOUR!!!
Liz_H, Jan 2021
Tour To Chichicastenango, An Ancestral Mayan Market + Panajachel
This tour was amazing!! My guides, Winston and Astrid, were so nice, knowledgeable, and professional. The drivers were also fantastic. I learned so much about Guatemala and Mayan culture. I also took some great photos at Lake Atitlan and Chichicastenango. This tour is great for families, couples, and solo travelers. Awesome experience!!!
star-5
Chichi and Pana day trip
Kristen_B, Jun 2021
Chichicastenango and Panajachel Day Trip from Antigua
Miguel was the best. Very informative. Provides great history. Very careful with your safety. The lake is beautiful. You should spend more than one day there. My schedule did not allow for that so this was a great trip.
star-5
AMAZING tour with Moises!!
Lauren_D, Jan 2022
Chichicastenango and Iximche Pyramids Private Day Tour from Antigua
Moises was an excellent guide for this trip! He really made sure the day was personalized to my friend and I. We were picked up in time and stopped for breakfast at a great local restaurant on the way. At Chichi, Moises gave us a tour of the church, different areas of the market, and a nearby cemetery. He have plenty of detail on everything that was happening and local customs/beliefs. We had time to shop by ourselves and met up with Moises and our driver to head to Iximche. Moises was very thoughtful and made sure we had opportunity to eat and use a restroom. At Iximche Moises talked about the history, explained the different structures, and took great photos for us! On the return to Antigua we asked for his restaurant recommendation and he dropped us off at a wonderful steak house near the main square of Antigua. I highly recommend this tour and MOISES!
star-5
2-Day Chichicastenango and Lake Atitlan Tour
Lois, Feb 2020
2-Day Chichicastenango and Lake Atitlan Tour from Guatemala City or Antigua
This was a fantastic experience with a very good guide in Davos who is not only knowledgable but personable and lots of fun too! We learned lots and have some super photos to help us remember this experience—actually many experiences! Highly recommend this tour!
star-4
Good Tour
Michelle_T, Feb 2020
Full Day Tour: Chichicastenango Maya Market and Lake Atitlan from Guatemala City
Overall tour was good. We went to the market, went to a church, had lunch, then went to the lake then back home I wish we spent more time at the lake, lunch would've been better there. Our tour guide and driver was amazingly sweet.
star-5
Must see and do while in Guatemala
Diane_H, Sep 2019
Full Day Trip in Chichicastenango
, beautiful drive, crazy Market, lots of interesting information., our guide Tony, took us to several beautiful locations and many interesting sites.
star-4
A Sunday to remember
Gayle, Mar 2020
Chichicastenango and Panajachel Day Trip from Antigua
Our driver picked us up on time at our hotel in a late model vehicle, very comfortable. He was a good driver, and fluent in English as well as Spanish. It is a fairly long drive, but there are rest stops going and coming. The scenery is spectacular. We went on Sunday, market day in Chichicastenango, which is highly recommended - a huge colorful lively experience. Be sure to visit the food vendors inside also. Fantastic photo ops.
star-5
Fun trip to the Mercado and Breathtaking Views of Lake Atitlan!
Dustin_G, Aug 2019
Full Day Tour: Chichicastenango Maya Market and Lake Atitlan from Guatemala City
Juan Pablo was a great guide and Cubano was a fantastic driver! Juan Pablo was a wonderful guide! He taught us about Guatemala, the Mayan that live in this beautiful place, the customs and traditions of the Maya, and about the places that we visited. A guide book to Guatemala cannot give the personal information about a place the way that Juan Pablo gave to us. A visit to the Mercado is a must! The views at Atitlan are breathtaking!
star-5
Wonderful Day Trip
Becky_P, Sep 2019
Chichicastenango and Panajachel Day Trip from Antigua
Mirkos did a great job as our tour guide to Chichicastenango. He was very knowledgeable and because we ended up as the only two on the tour, he let us make decisions about how to spend our time. I would definitely recommend this day trip!
star-5
Amazing Experience!
Eliza_C, Nov 2020
Tour To Chichicastenango, An Ancestral Mayan Market + Panajachel
I highly recommend this tour for anyone looking to learn about the history of Guatemala, the Mayan Culture, or simply see more of the country. I absolutely loved everything about this tour, it was well timed and thought out. My tour guide Jenny was fabulous, she really personalized the tour to me and gave great recommendations! I am SO happy I did this!

Things to Know Before You Go

  • Chichicastenango’s nights can get chilly, and rain is likely—take a jacket or sweater.

  • Gentle bargaining is expected at the market.

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How to Get There

Located roughly 90 miles (145 kilometers) northwest of Guatemala City, Chichicastenango is reachable by regular buses and shuttles running from Antigua and Guatemala City.

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When to Get There

Go to Chichicastenango on a Thursday or Sunday to catch the local indigenous market that draws communities from all over the region and travelers from all over the world. As it’s in the highlands, Chichicastenango enjoys pleasant spring-like weather year-round, with little variation. The warmest season is from May to August, and the driest months are October through December.

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Saint Thomas Church

Saint Thomas Church dominates Chichicastenango’s main square. Built atop a Maya temple more than 450 years ago—mainly by Maya artisans indentured by Dominican priests—the church features Maya symbolism throughout. (For example, each of the 18 stairs leading to the entrance represents one month of the Maya year.) Nowadays, both Catholic and Maya priests share the interior to perform ceremonies and sacred rituals. Use the side entrance to enter, as the front is reserved for locals.

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