Is Lake Atitlán Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

Lake Atitlán can be a beautiful yet cautionary destination for solo female travelers. With its stunning natural beauty, engaging Mayan culture, and warm-hearted locals, the area is generally safe and welcoming. However, it's crucial to remain vigilant, especially during evenings and while using public transportation. Instances of pickpocketing and petty theft are reported occasionally. It is recommended to stay connected with a reliable local guide or locals for better safety. Sustainable tourism practices and respect for local culture and norms are always advised.

Safety rating

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How safe is Lake Atitlán?

Safety at night:

Safety at night:Unsafe

Lake Atitlán after sunset can be a bit risky, especially for solo female travelers. Though the area is relatively safe during the day, it’s not advisable to walk alone at night. Due to limited street lighting and less foot traffic, the risk of potential safety issues increases. It is recommended to use reliable and safe transportation options, avoid secluded areas and always be conscious of your surroundings.
Public transportation:

Public transportation:Moderate

Public transportation in Lake Atitlán primarily consists of boats connecting the villages around the lake and old American school buses, known as 'chicken buses'. While generally safe during the day, care should be taken during night time. Boat rides can get rough depending on weather conditions. As for the buses, they are often overcrowded and drivers can drive very fast which can feel unsafe at times. Furthermore, they are occasionally targets for robberies. Despite these points, they are commonly used by locals and tourists alike. Personal safety can very much depend on individual circumstances and vigilance.
Street harassment:

Street harassment:Low

Lake Atitlán in Guatemala is renowned for its serene surroundings and the amicable locals. While there can be occasional incidents of varying degrees of street harassment, it is generally a safe place for solo female travelers. However, as in any touristy location, it's important to adhere to basic safety measures such as avoiding wandering alone at late-night hours and staying aware of your surroundings at all times.
Petty crimes:

Petty crimes:Moderate

Lake Atitlán is generally safe but petty crimes like pick-pocketing and bag snatching do happen occasionally. It's important to keep an eye on your belongings at all times especially in crowded areas. Don't flash expensive possessions and avoid isolated areas after dark. Always hire reliable transportation and stick to well-travelled routes.
Tap water:

Tap water:Very unsafe

It's not safe to drink tap water in Lake Atitlán as it may not be treated sufficiently to avoid waterborne diseases. Most locals and visitors opt for bottled water, filtered water, or water purification tablets for drinking and brushing teeth.

Is Lake Atitlán safe to travel?

Is Lake Atitlán safe right now?

Before your visit to Lake Atitlán, it's essential to check travel advisories for Guatemala, including your home country's official travel advisory. These advisories can provide up-to-date information on safety, health, and any specific considerations for travelers.

United States Travel AdvisoryReconsider your need to travel

The United States government advises reconsidering travel to Guatemala due to crime. Certain areas pose an increased risk. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: July 17, 2023

Canada's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The Canadian government advises exercising a high degree of caution in Guatemala due to high levels of violent crime, roadblocks, strikes, and demonstrations that occur throughout the country. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: July 15, 2024

Australia's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The Australian government advises exercising a high degree of caution in Guatemala due to the threat of violent crime. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: November 10, 2023

Is Lake Atitlán worth visiting?



United Kingdom

Couple travel experience

My time on lake atitlan was amazing! Such an amazing experience and met so many great people. perfect place to meet other people especially at free cerveza everyone was so welcoming, and the food was amazing! There was a place that did falafel wraps(i can’t remember the name sorry) which was INSANE ! i’ve had a LOT of falafel in my life and that was one of, if not THE BEST

Posted: June 7, 2024
Things to do: 5/5Food: 5/5Budget-friendly: 4/5Safety: 5/5
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Safety in Guatemala