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San Pedro La Laguna

Carved into the base of its namesake volcano, on the southeast shores of Lake Atitlan, San Pedro La Laguna is a little town with a lot to offer.

Although smaller in size then the neighboring towns of Panajachel or Santiago, its laidback attitude and breathtaking scenery has put San Pedro on the map as an important backpacker’s destination.

Its approximate population of 13,000 is made up mainly of indigenous Tzutujil speaking Mayans with a growing expat community. While most people plan to come for a while, for many a while becomes forever.

The town spreads out between two main docks; the Panajachel dock and Santiago dock and stretches up from the shores of the lake to the base of the volcano. The upper part of the town, centered around the gleaming white Catholic Church is home mainly to the locals, while the stretch of buildings occupying the lakefront are where one will find the majority of tourist inspired businesses and accommodations.

Despite this apparent separation between foreigners and locals there is a pleasant integration of both culture and lifestyle. In the town market, backpackers in baggy shorts and short skirts intermingle with the brightly colored traditional textiles worn by the Mayan women.

The economy is dependent heavily upon tourism as its major breadwinner. Spanish schools, hotels, restaurants, laundry services, travel agencies, kayak and horse rentals, corner stores and the local street vendors peddling their wares, including the little Mayan ladies selling their homemade bread and pastries, all depend on the income of the tourist dollar.

Coffee cultivation and exportation is another contributor, with Guatemalan coffee being recognized as being some of the world’s finest. During coffee harvest season beans are spread out to dry around the town, letting off a sweet, rather pungent odor.

San Pedro has some of the least expensive rates for both Spanish lessons and hotel rooms, with plenty of each to choose from. Similarly, the many restaurants in San Pedro offer a vast selection of traditional and international cuisines. While in San Pedro there is no shortage of things to do. The more active can seek out hiking and adventure tours, while those looking to relax can simply sit and soak in the spectacular view.

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Other places nearby San Pedro La Laguna: Santiago Atitlan, San Antonio Papoló, Santa Cruz La Laguna, Jaibalito, San Lucas Tolimán, Santa Catarina Palopó, Tzununá, San Juan La Laguna, Panajachel and San Marcos La Laguna.







28 Jul 2010

Things to do in San Pedro La Laguna

Cerro de la Cruz walk

105237Facing the lake in the centre of San Pedro head left and stick to the main road all the way to the next settlement, San Juan. Walk through the streets until you are out on the other side of the small ...
Hiking
San Pedro La Laguna, Guatemala

Culture Tour of San Juan

105238This tour gives you a chance to see how life works in these parts. Head to San Juan the same way as for the Cerro de la Cruz walk and meet the guide in town. He will take you to meet weavers, people ...
Cultural Tour
San Pedro La Laguna, Guatemala

Indigino Nariz walk

105239This is an extension of the Cerro de la Cruz walk and is a bit of a toughie. The climb heads up the same path but take the left fork at the clearing to start heading up the big hill that towers over ...
Hiking
San Pedro La Laguna, Guatemala

Museo Tzu’nun Ya’

For a brief lesson in the history Lake Atitlan and the Mayan cultures inhabiting its shores, visit Museo Tzu’nun Ya’. Begin the tour with two short video presentations. The first video depicts ...
Museum
San Pedro La Laguna, Guatemala
Mapa
View San Pedro La Laguna Map




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