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Volcano Hikes in Guatemala


Hiking a volcano can be a thrilling and rewarding experience, offering stunning views and the chance to witness the raw power of nature. In Guatemala, two popular options for volcano hiking are Acatenango and Pacaya. Both offer unique challenges and rewards, but which one is right for you? Here is a breakdown of the pros and cons of each volcano.

Acatenango Volcano:

Acatenango Volcano Hike.

Fuego volcano blowing rings seen from base camp.


  • At an elevation of 3976 meters (13054 feet), Acatenango is the second-highest volcano in Guatemala after Tajumulco and offers breathtaking views from the summit.
  • The hike to the top is challenging, but not too difficult for experienced hikers. It takes about 8-12 hours round trip, depending on your pace.
  • The summit offers a unique opportunity to witness the nearby Fuego volcano erupting, as it often does.
  • The hike passes through a variety of ecosystems, including cloud forests and alpine tundra, providing a diverse range of flora and fauna to observe.


  • The hike can be quite chilly, even in the warmer months, so be sure to bring warm clothing.
  • The hike can be quite strenuous and is not suitable for those in poor physical condition or with mobility issues.
  • The weather, if cloudy can prevent clear views of Volcan Fuego.

Pacaya Volcano:

Pacaya Volcano.

Hiking Active Pacaya Volcano


  • Pacaya is a much easier hike than Acatenango, suitable for people of all fitness levels. It takes about 3-4 hours round trip.
  • The volcano is active and you can often witness small eruptions and see lava flows during the hike.
  • The trail passes through a lush forest and offers the chance to see a variety of wildlife, including howler monkeys and colorful birds.


  • The views from the summit are not as spectacular as those from Acatenango.
  • The volcano can be quite crowded, especially on weekends and holidays.
  • The lava flows can be dangerous and the hike is not recommended during times of increased activity.

In conclusion, when it comes to volcano hikes in Guatemala both Acatenango and Pacaya offer unique and exciting hiking experiences. Acatenango is a more challenging hike with stunning views, but may not be suitable for everyone due to its difficulty and cold temperatures. Pacaya is an easier hike with the chance to witness volcanic activity, but the views are not as impressive. Both volcanoes can be crowded, so it is recommended to go on a weekday or during the off-season to avoid the crowds. Whichever volcano you choose, be sure to bring plenty of water, sun protection, and sturdy hiking shoes, and always follow the guidance of your tour guide. If you decide you would like to do either of these hikes, you can book through us here.

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