Guatemala City: Best Things to Do

Image by Jeison Morales from Pixabay

Guatemala City is the capital and largest urban city in Guatemala, a nation famous for being the place for the legendary Mayan cultural history

The city is situated in the south-central part of the country

This city is heaven for you who want to seek a wonderful adventure in many tropical places and cultural sites with the rich history of Mayan culture

Some of the must-visit places in this city are Museo Ixchel del Traje Indígena, Mercado Central, Museo Popol Vuh, and many more attractions waiting for you to roam about

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SIGHTSEEING

Being one of the cultural highlights in Central America along with the widely-known Mayan history, you should definitely spare some time visiting Museo Ixchel del Traje Indígena. This place is one of the most interesting cultural history museums featuring the collection of traditional Guatemalan textiles, clothing, and ceramics. Through the collections displayed here, you can learn beforehand about a glimpse of Mayan culture that is still carefully preserved in this city.

Museo Ixchel del Traje Indígena

Cultural history museum with a collection of traditional Guatemalan clothing, textiles & ceramics

Address : 6A Calle, Guatemala

DOWNTOWN

If you happen to sightsee around the downtown area of Guatemala City, the National Library of Guatemala should be on the shortlist of your destinations. This huge library complex is constructed by the local muralist and architect Efrain Recinos. In this library area, you can find more than 150.000 books and newspapers to get you learning about the history and culture of Guatemala. You can also enjoy arts from a variety of genre such as abstract and facade arts.

National Library of Guatemala

A library housing more than 150

000 books and newspaper to get you learning about the history and culture of Guatemala

Address : 5 Avenida 7-26, Guatemala

SHOPPING

Now, if you want some pretty souvenirs to take home, Mercado Central is definitely the right place to go. Along with this vibrant and colorful market place, you can easily find many vendors selling local products such as crafts, casual clothing, traditional foods, and various kinds of souvenirs.

Mercado Central

Modernista market building with colorful tiles & a diverse collection of stalls, separated by type

Address : Plaça de la Ciutat de Bruges, s/n, 46001 València, Valencia, Spain

FOOD & DRINK

The food scene in Guatemala City is a reflection of many cultures that shape Guatemalan culture. When it comes to traditional foods, Maya cuisine has a huge influence with the prominent use of corns, beans, and chilis as key ingredients. Grab a seat Restaurante Casa Chapina if you want to taste the original flavor of Guatemalan cuisine.

Restaurante Casa Chapina

A place to taste the original flavor of Guatemalan cuisine

Address : 1 Avenida 13-42, Guatemala 01010, Guatemala

CULTURE

There is so much to learn when it comes to the culture in Guatemala City. Having such a strong mixture of Mayan and Spanish culture, Guatemala City is the reflection of a contrasting combination between the traditional Mayan culture in the rural area and the urbanized culture of the city. Museo Popol Vuh is a good place to start your journey discovering the many cultural sides of Guatemala. Named after the ancient Mayan book, this place displays collections of the pre-Hispanic statue and traditional textiles, along with other Mayan artifacts.

Museo Popol Vuh

Museum with a sizable collection of Guatemalan & ancient Mayan art & cultural artifacts

Address : Universidad Francisco Marroquín, 6A Calle, Guatemala

BEST TIME TO VISIT

The most recommended time to visit Guatemala City is during the dry season, which is from November to April.

HOTEL

Tikal Futura is the best hotel for you who want to experience staying in a cozy place with futuristic and stylish decoration. There is a remarkably polished international restaurant that is ready to serve you with the best quality service in Guatemala City. But if you are looking for a different experience, Hyatt Centric Guatemala City has a pretty nice offering. During your stay in this hotel, you can have a nice view of the Pacaya volcano. The rooftop terrace in this hotel is a very nice spot to relax your nerves.

Tikal Futura

Set in a contemporary shopping/entertainment complex, this upmarket hotel is a 3-minute walk from the Mayan artifacts of Miraflores Museum, and 6 km from La Aurora International Airport

Address : 12 Calle 2-25 Zona 10 Guatemala City, 01010, Guatemala

Hyatt Centric Guatemala City

Offering views of the Pacaya volcano, this modern, upmarket hotel next to eateries in the bustling Zona Viva district is 2 km from the Museo Popol Vuh and 5 km from La Aurora International Airport

Address : 12 Calle 2-25 Zona 10 Guatemala City, 01010, Guatemala

RESTAURANT

Of course, when you are in Guatemala City you don’t want to miss out having a mouthful bite of Guatemalan dishes served with the best quality. Restaurante Kacao is where you should drop by. With the great ambiance of Guatemala-style decoration, you are guaranteed to have the ultimate meal experience in Guatemala City. But alternatively, if your stomach craves for something different while you are in the land of Guatemala, try to drop by at DEL GRIEGO. In this family-run Greek restaurant, you are going to get pampered with the tranquil atmosphere featuring the blue-toned dining room that calms your mind.

Restaurante Kacao

The best place for Guatemalan local foods

Address : 2 avenida, #13-44 zona 10 Ciudad de Guatemala, 01010, Guatemala

DEL GRIEGO

Family-run restaurant offering popular Greek dishes in a tranquil, blue-toned dining room

Address : 1 Avenida 12-16, Guatemala 01010, Guatemala

CAFE

Just like the name of the place, Paradigma Cafe is ready to serve you with one of a kind service of the best taste of coffee in Guatemala City. This cafe has multiple brewing methods and the classic taste of high-quality coffee. This cafe is located in a less crowded area but still within the downtown of Guatemala City so you can still sit around enjoying the atmosphere in peace. Another recommended cozy cafe is Cafetería La Tacita De Plata. This is a very fine place to drink a cup of tea along with other wide selections of excellent foods and drinks. The decoration of this place is a very nice mixture of 50s classic style meets the modern urban style that makes the ambiance of this cafe really interesting.

Paradigma Cafe

Tasty coffee shop in a trendy district of Guatemala City

Address : Via 5 1-75, Guatemala

Cafetería La Tacita De Plata

A fine place to sip a wide varietu of good-quality tea and coffee

Address : 11 Calle, Guatemala

BAR AND NIGHTLIFE

It would be such a waste for you to spend the night in Guatemala City without experiencing the fun atmosphere featuring the Guatemalan local music scene. SOMA Cultural Center is the sort of place for you who want to have blast accompanied by the nice music, concerts, and many kinds of cultural events that are usually performed in this place. Another place for the absolute excitement in Guatemala City is The Box Lounge Groove. This place is well-known as the oldest and progressive underground-club in Guatemala City that will ensure your amusement to the maximum level.

SOMA Cultural Center

A place to have a blast enjoting the performance of Guatemala's music scene

Address : 11 Calle 4-27, Guatemala 01001, Guatemala

Guatemala City is The Box Lounge Groove.

Funky and progressive house underground-club in Guatemala City

Address : 53, 15 Calle 2, Guatemala

INTERESTING PLACE

If you are looking for a place to experience the different charm of Guatemala City, you are welcomed to go to La Aurora Zoo. The zoo built-in 1924 is the house to many native and exotic animals in an extraordinarily green space that resembles the natural habitat of the animals. Other than sightseeing animals, this place is also recommended for enjoying many activities with your kids. Edificio de Correos Central is a beautiful post office building built in 1938 by Rafael Pérez de León and Enrique Riera as the celebration of the president’s birthday at the time. In this old building, you can experience the unique ambiance of Guatemala City.

La Aurora Zoo

Founded in 1924, the zoo features native & exotic animal habitats, plus demonstrations & activities

Address : 5A Calle, Guatemala 01013, Guatemala

Edificio de Correos Central

Bautiful post office building built in 1938

Address : 12 Calle, Guatemala

INSTAGRAMMABLE SPOT

Iglesia La Merced is a pretty yellow church with the neoclassical style decoration that contains the iconic gold-plated Baroque altars that definitely can be an excellent spot to take a picture in Guatemala City. Besides the architecture, the charm of this building also includes the collection of paintings, statues, and sculptures dating from the 17th to 19th centuries. Botánico Guatemala Garden is the alternative picturesque landmark to capture many pretty pictures. Although the complex may not be really large, this place displays extensive collections of Guatemalan plants.

Iglesia La Merced

Iconic church dating to 1767 featuring an ornate yellow facade & adjacent convent ruins

Address : 1a Calle Poniente & 6a Avenida Norte, Antigua Guatemala, Guatemala

Botánico Guatemala Garden

Intimate botanical garden with displays of Guatemalan plants & trees, including marine species

Address : Avenida La Reforma 0-63, Guatemala 01000, Guatemala