×
Interested in our Partner Program for businesses or our Local Guide Program for experienced expats and digital nomads? Click here to learn more.
Expat Exchange - The Essential Guide to Chichicastenango 2024
Expat Exchange
Free MembershipSign In


The Essential Guide to Chichicastenango

By Joshua Wood, LPC

SJB Global
SJB Global

Summary: Exploring the Best of Chichicastenango: Your Guide to Top Sites, Restaurants, Nightlife, and More. From Cultural Experiences to Outdoor Adventures, We'll Help You Make the Most of Your Time in the City.

Welcome to Chichicastenango! If you're planning to move to Chichicastenango, congratulations on taking the first step towards a new adventure. While there are many things to think about before you leave, such as visas, housing, and transportation, it's important to remember that once you arrive, the fun really begins. In this article, we'll introduce you to some of the best sites, restaurants, and nightlife that Chichicastenango has to offer, as well as provide tips on recreational activities and making friends in Chichicastenango.

Chichicastenango, a small town in the highlands of Guatemala, is a vibrant and culturally rich destination for tourists and locals alike. Known for its colorful markets, traditional Mayan culture, and stunning natural surroundings, Chichicastenango offers a variety of sites of interest for visitors to explore.

One of the main attractions in Chichicastenango is the famous market, which takes place every Thursday and Sunday. This bustling market is one of the largest in Central America and is a great place to buy traditional handicrafts, textiles, pottery, and more. The vibrant colors and lively atmosphere make it a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to the area.

Another important site in Chichicastenango is the Santo Tomás Church, a beautiful 400-year-old church that sits atop a hill overlooking the town. This church is a fascinating blend of Catholic and Mayan traditions, with 18 steps leading up to the entrance, each representing one month of the Mayan calendar. Visitors can witness traditional Mayan rituals being performed on the church steps, as well as explore the ornate interior of the church itself.

For those interested in learning more about the local culture, the Museo Regional de Chichicastenango is a small museum that showcases the history and traditions of the town and its people. The museum features exhibits on traditional clothing, religious artifacts, and more, providing a deeper understanding of the rich cultural heritage of Chichicastenango.

Chichicastenango is also surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes, making it a great base for exploring the nearby countryside. One popular destination is the Pascual Abaj, a sacred Mayan hilltop shrine located just outside of town. Visitors can hike up to the shrine and enjoy stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

Another popular activity is to visit the nearby Lake Atitlán, a stunning volcanic lake surrounded by picturesque villages and lush green hills. The lake is a popular destination for boating, swimming, and hiking, and offers a peaceful escape from the bustling town of Chichicastenango.

The restaurant and nightlife scene in Chichicastenango is relatively small, but there are still several popular spots for visitors to enjoy. One of the most popular restaurants in town is Los Cofrades, which serves a mix of traditional Guatemalan and international cuisine. The restaurant is known for its delicious food, friendly service, and cozy atmosphere, making it a favorite among both locals and tourists.

Another popular dining option is Restaurante Rinconcito, which offers a variety of traditional Guatemalan dishes in a casual setting. The restaurant is particularly known for its delicious soups and stews, as well as its friendly and welcoming staff.

For a more upscale dining experience, visitors can head to Hotel Santo Tomás, which features a beautiful courtyard restaurant serving a mix of local and international cuisine. The hotel also has a bar where guests can enjoy a drink in a relaxed and elegant setting.

While Chichicastenango does not have a large nightlife scene, there are a few bars and cafes where visitors can enjoy a drink and socialize with locals. One popular spot is Café Museo, a cozy cafe that offers a variety of drinks, snacks, and live music on select nights. Another option is Bar El Quetzal, a laid-back bar with a friendly atmosphere and a selection of local and international beers.

Recreational activities in Chichicastenango are centered around exploring the town's rich culture and beautiful natural surroundings. One popular activity is to take a guided walking tour of the town, which allows visitors to learn more about the history and traditions of Chichicastenango while visiting important sites such as the Santo Tomás Church and the Pascual Abaj shrine.

Hiking is another popular activity in the area, with several trails leading through the surrounding countryside and offering stunning views of the mountains and valleys. Some popular hiking destinations include the Pascual Abaj shrine, as well as the nearby Lake Atitlán and its surrounding villages.

For those looking to immerse themselves in the local culture, participating in a traditional Mayan ceremony or workshop can be a unique and memorable experience. Several local organizations, such as the Mayan Cultural Center, offer workshops on traditional weaving, pottery, and other crafts, as well as opportunities to participate in Mayan ceremonies and rituals.

Finally, for visitors looking to relax and unwind, a visit to the nearby hot springs of Fuentes Georginas can be a rejuvenating experience. These natural hot springs, located about an hour's drive from Chichicastenango, offer a peaceful retreat surrounded by lush green forests and beautiful mountain views.

Allianz CareAllianz Care
Get Quote

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.
Get Quote

Insider Tips from Expats in Chichicastenango: Making the Most of Life and Connections

Allianz CareAllianz Care
Get Quote

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.
Get Quote

Allianz CareAllianz Care
Get Quote

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.
Get Quote

About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.


SJB Global
SJB Global

SJB Global
SJB Global

Allianz Care
Allianz Care

Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
Get Quote

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
Get Quote

Contribute to Guatemala Network Contribute
Help others in Guatemala by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Guatemala.

SJB Global
SJB Global

Copyright 1997-2024 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal Partners & Local Guides