Looking for a different kind of honeymoon or fabulous getaway? Consider taking a yoga retreat! This guide to Lake Atitlan will convince you that it’s the perfect place to head on a romantic trip. I’ve got 10 reasons to go on a Lake Atitlan Guatemala yoga retreat.
While many folks whisk off to a resort or cruise for their honeymoon, you may be one of those couples that long for more. If so, you may want to consider heading off on a Lake Atitlan, Guatemala yoga retreat. If you decide to backpack instead, you might be surprised that you can travel Guatemala for just $50 a day!
On a yoga retreat, you bond and stretch your body. Additionally, you’ll be exposed to immersive experiences during your Lake Atitlan itinerary. Here’s all you need to know about taking a trip.
FAQ About Lake Atitlan Activities
How far is Lake Atitlan from Guatemala City?
The distance from Guatemala City to Lake Atitlan is almost 160 km and is a 3.5-hour trip.
What is the distance from Antigua to Lake Atitlan?
Antigua to Lake Atitlan is around 88 km and takes about 2 hours and 45 minutes.
How to get to Lake Atitlan?
There are several ways to get to the area. However, private transportation, vans, and buses are the most popular.
When I went, I booked a trip with Traverse Journeys, and all of my transportation was taken care of to and from the airport. Knowing how to get to Lake Atitlan wasn’t even a concern for me!
What are the best towns to visit in Lake Atitlan?
There are plenty of great cities around Lake Atitlan, Guatemala. You can visit Santa Cruz, San Marcos, Santiago, and several other towns by taking the Lake Atitlan ferry boat. The Lake Atitlan best towns differ from person to person as there are different things to do in each area.
What is the Lake Atitlan weather like?
The weather in Guatemala is fairly consistent and doesn’t really get too hot or too cold. Temperatures hover between 65° F and 80° F year-round.
April through October is somewhat rainy, but it tends to storm in the afternoon, so you can hopefully plan to get in a few activities before the rain hits.
Is Lake Atitlan worth it?
In my opinion, YES! It’s one of the places I want to go back and visit. The atmosphere was relaxed, the Lake Atitlan food was amazing, and I truly enjoyed my entire experience.
The presence of so many Lake Atitlan ex-pats speaks volumes about how outsiders feel about the area.
Can you do everything on a Lake Atitlan day trip?
In my opinion, I was there for the perfect amount of time. Although you can get a taste of the area on a Lake Atitlan day trip, I feel that there are so many experiences that you’ll want to linger longer in the area.
Whether you do yoga, shop, eat, take a boat ride, or visit the markets, there are plenty of things to do to fill your days.
Lake Atitlan Guatemala Map
10 Reasons for a Lake Atitlan Guatemala Yoga Retreat
1. Rest and relax at an eco-hotel in Lake Atitlan.
Although there are plenty of Lake Atitlan hotels, I appreciated the opportunity to stay somewhere that was conscious of the environment.
Our Lake Atitlan accommodation was made with natural materials, such as stone and wood, and it was perfectly nestled into the hillside. Our hotel in Tzununa (near San Marcos) was rustic yet comfortable, and it had lovely views of the lake and surrounding volcanoes.
2. Eat freshly prepared, healthy foods to reset your system.
Not only was our hotel a great place to stay, but it was also where we ate most of our meals — freshly made using local ingredients from a nearby garden. Our chef made our food with mostly vegetarian ingredients, and each meal was seemingly better than the next.
My personal favorite was the fresh salads that included gorgeous, striped flower petals. We even had the opportunity to see the flowers growing in the local garden during a tour.
3. Refresh your body with daily yoga practice.
Whether you love yoga or don’t have the first clue what mountain and bridge poses are, that’s ok! Everyone from beginner to expert can gain something from the expertise of the yoga teacher during the retreat.
We did a combination of different types of poses, ranging from relaxing stretches to more challenging positions. Yoga practice was optional, but it’s offered most mornings and evenings.
It’s a great way to connect with your partner, your body, and the other folks on the retreat. Also, if a group retreat doesn’t sound romantic, Traverse Journeys also does special itineraries for any size group — even just you and your partner!
4. Establish your intentions during a Mayan fire ceremony.
On the first morning of our retreat, a Mayan shaman performed a fire ceremony. It was one of the most reflective, impactful experiences of the trip. Plus, it gave everyone time to focus on their intentions for the week ahead.
The shaman built the circular fire in a pit using natural ingredients, such as corn and flowers, and we all sat around the circle during the ceremony. The time focused on having gratitude, accepting ourselves, and being blessed by the shaman.
It was something that anyone from any religion (or lack thereof) could enjoy. Our time together was emotional, revealing, and grounding. Whether you do a ceremony with the group or have a private one arranged for you and your partner, I highly suggest doing so!
5. Gain perspective with immersive experiences.
If there’s one thing I love about Traverse Journeys, it’s the fact that they purposely build immersive experiences into their Lake Atitlan itinerary.
While we were there, we visited Cacao Source, which is an organization that not only takes cacao from seed to usable paste but also provides opportunities for local women who would otherwise be impoverished. They also offer other activities, such as a cacao ceremony in Lake Atitlan.
Gaining a perspective on the country you are visiting is always important. Getting to know locals and hearing their stories truly is a life-changing experience.
6. Explore the local market.
In the United States, we head to the grocery store when we need something. However, the residents of Guatemala rely on their local street markets to get things.
By heading to a market, you can purchase just about anything you can think of. Some vendors sell edible items like spices, nuts, produce, fish, and meats. Others offer clothing, toys, and household supplies.
The color and variety are incredible, plus it’s fun to feel like a local and be a part of the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life in Guatemala. You can even eat street food while you’re there.
7. Unwind at a permaculture community.
Perhaps one of the most bonding times we had was when we visited the permaculture farm, which involved taking a 45-minute ride on the back of an open pickup truck. We traveled as the locals did!
Our time at the permaculture farm was spent learning about how the community operates while sampling delicious food grown on-site. We even played in natural swimming pools and had a chance to relax and chat while we were there.
8. Enjoy time on the lake.
Shorelines of lakes in the United States are lined with homes while the water is filled with privately owned boats and jet skis. However, Lake Atitlan is much different.
When you look at the lake, you’ll see several cities around Lake Atitlan, Guatemala. You’ll also see an occasional fisherman or person on a kayak, and the best way to get from one place to another is to use the Lake Atitlan ferry system.
While you’re on the boats, you can look out and simply enjoy the ride. You’ll see lovely views and have the chance to get closer to some of the volcanoes.
9. Visit the towns around the lake to shop and eat.
Free time is always nice, and Traverse Journeys does a great job of allowing guests to explore on their own. Whether you want to get a massage in San Marcos or go shopping in San Juan, you can take a tuk-tuk or the boats to get to town.
When you stay in Tzununa, head to San Marcos to Hippie Highway to visit the shops, get a pastry and coffee, and walk down to Lake Atitlan. Since it was close by, we frequented this area the most.
It was always buzzing with locals and ex-pats visiting and going about their daily lives in a beautiful, colorful setting.
10. Seal your time with a meaningful closing ceremony.
Just like the time begins with an intention-setting fire ceremony, the final yoga session is followed by a sentimental closing ceremony. Although it’s sad to leave new friends and the Lake Atitlan area, the time is meaningful and allows everyone to say goodbye.
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Guide to Lake Atitlan and Lake Atitlan images by Jennifer Prince