Central Highlands Mayan Ruins Spanish Colonization Mountain Forests Agricultural Region [SP] Kaqchiquels Kingdom

Tecpan, Guatemala Vacation Guide

Tecpan is located 55 km/35 mi from Guatemala City. In local language it means Villa of gods or house of the royalty. It was the first capital of the Country, led by the Kaqchikel Kingdom. The area has a chilly climate because of its altitude, forests and mountains that surrounds it. Tecpan is also known as Guatemala's Gastronomy route since you can find over 50 restaurants on a 14 km stretch of the Inter-American Highway.
Tecpan is one of the places in Guatemala that celebrates its anniversary by doing a big festival. Every year they present a collection of paints, handcrafts, culinary arts and handmade items made out of metal and wood. This is done with the purpose of promoting the local talent. They plan to keep this tradition until 2024, when the town will turn 500 years old, making it the oldest city in Central America.

Attractions and Activities

Discover Tecpan territory

Iximche, meaning "Árbol de Maíz", is a territory located on a promontory in Tecpan's main hill where a Mayan group used to live. Unfortunately there are not so many remaining temples or houses since the original structures were made of adobe. The location suffered two big fires that destroyed most of this Mayan town. Nowadays it is still a very important place because of cultural and religious activities. The atmosphere in this archeological park is magical and you can feel the vibe of the Mayan ancestors who fought for their culture and traditions in Iximche.

Excursions from Guatemala City to other destinations near by

Guatemala City is located approximately an hour away from Tecpan. This modern city has a lot of shopping opportunities, cultural activities going on throughout the year. It is also hosting a big amount of museums for you to visit while exploring the metropolis of the country.

Antigua is one of Guatemala's treasures. Destroyed by several natural disasters and abandoned by its people back in the days, Antigua was able to flourish and became one of the most visit spots in the country and an UNESCO World Heritage site. Visit its ruins and cobblestone streets surrounded by a high concentration of restaurants, bars and cafés.

Lake Atitlan is one of the most beautiful destinations in Guatemala. It is as well approximately one hour away from Tecpan. Surrounded by more than a dozen villages, this lake is a natural beauty that you don't want to miss. Here you will find lots of original Maya souvenirs, water activities, hiking and several options to try the local food.

Restaurants in Tecpan

On the Inter-American highway of the country you will find the highest concentration of local food restaurants. So if you want to try the real Guatemalan cuisine, this is the place for you to visit. Between the typical dishes from the area around Tecpan you could try Pepian negro or colorado, Pulique or Subanik all of which originate from the Mayan Kaqchikel cuisine.

Katok is one of the most famous restaurants in the area, opened its doors in 1961, making it very traditional and representative of the Guatemalan culture.

Kape Paulinos is a perfect destination for you to relax and enjoy the chilling weather of Chimaltenango. With its rustic wooden cabin design is a place with a lot of Guatemalan tradition in it.

El Rincón Suizo is known because of its excellent food and desserts. The restaurant is next the highway and has a stylish wooden design. Opened in 1995 they inherited the unique recipes from Europe and combined them with local ingredients.

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Information about Lake Atitlan and its surroundings.

Location and Map

Located in the Andes Mountains, Tecpan counts with 35 villages and one main town. It has 23 farmhouses and 14 farms. In the department of Chimaltenango, Tecpan is in the Central Plateau of the country, covering 201 square km.

Tecpan, Chimaltenango

Midwestern Guatemala
Population: 60,900
Elevation: 2,086 m/6,844 ft