Lago de Atitlán – Guatemala - Atlas Obscura
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Lago de Atitlán

Central America's deepest lake is actually a volcanic caldera, surrounded by three volcanoes. 

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Although it is recognized as Central America’s deepest lake (estimated at over 340 meters), Atitlán is so deep it has yet to be properly sounded. It is the result of a massive volcanic explosion 84000 years ago, known as the Los Chocoyos eruption.

It is surrounded by three volcanoes, Volcan Atitlán, Volcán San Pedro and Volcán Tolimán. In addition, a forth volcano, Fuego can often be seen smoking on the horizon.

The towns surrounding the lake are home to vibrant Mayan communities as well as a thriving tourist industry centred in Panajachel.

Aldous Huxley famously wrote of it: “Lake Como, it seems to me, touches on the limit of permissibly picturesque, but Atitlán is Como with additional embellishments of several immense volcanoes. It really is too much of a good thing.”

In recent years, cyanobacteria infestation has become an increasing environmental concern with implications for the local ecosystem and economy. 

Know Before You Go

About a 3 hour drive from Guatemala City or Antigua.

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