When I first arrived in Xela from Antigua, I was a bit surprised it had been so highly recommended. The second largest city in Guatemala, Xela immediately felt big, loud, and not nearly as picturesquely charming as many of the other tourist destinations in the country.
Hanna Johnson is a San Francisco native who has been traveling through Central America since early 2014.
She's been to every continent except for Antarctica, and she always has a spare bottle of hot sauce in her purse... just in case.
Meet The Writers
Why Choose Chicabal
The Tajumulco and Santa Maria volcanoes tend to steal most of the attention in Quetzaltenango (often referred to simply as Xela), but you shouldn’t overlook the equally spectacular hike to Lake Chicabal when planning your itinerary. Less physically intensive than the hikes to the top of other volcanoes in Guatemala, Lake Chicabal is a sacred Mam Mayan site. Not only does it provide the killer view you expect trekking around Guatemala’s highlands, it also offers a unique glimpse into living Mayan culture.