Is Panajachel Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

Panajachel is a distinctively multicultural destination, which adds to its charm and attraction. However, safety can be variable. General precautions such as avoiding deserted areas during the night, not flaunting expensive possessions, and being cautious while using local transportation should be exercised. Crime rates are moderate and instances of pickpocketing or bag snatching can occur. It is suggested to stay in reputable accommodations, prefer guided tours and be alert and cautious especially during night hours.

Safety rating

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How safe is Panajachel?

Safety at night:

Safety at night:Unsafe

Panajachel, like most places, has areas that could potentially be risky at night. Overall, it's recommended to avoid walking alone at night. Always stay alert, avoid dimly lit, unpopulated areas, and consider taking a cab rather than walking, especially if you're moving from one point to another that's quite a distance away. However, if you are in a group or decently crowded areas and take precautions, it could be relatively safe.
Public transportation:

Public transportation:Moderate

Public transportation in Panajachel is generally reliable and well-utilized by both locals and tourists. However, it's notable that buses and shuttles may be overcrowded at times and may not always adhere to strict safety regulations. Also, pick-pocketing can occur, so keep a close eye on your belongings. While taxis are available and usually safer, it's advisable to agree on the fare before starting the journey to avoid potential haggling at destination. Overall, it's generally safe but it's recommended to remain vigilant at all times.
Street harassment:

Street harassment:Low

Panajachel is a friendly and welcoming town, with a strong emphasis on tourist safety. The local community respects tourists, and incidents of street harassment are rare. However, like everywhere else, it is advised to take customary precautions, which means avoiding dark and isolated areas at night, being mindful of your belongings, and dressing modestly. It's also better to stay polite yet firm with street vendors who can be a bit persistent.
Petty crimes:

Petty crimes:Low

Panajachel has relatively low risks regarding petty crimes. It is comparably safer than some other parts of Central America, but this does not mean that crimes such as pickpocketing and purse snatching do not occur. In crowded areas, you should be moderately cautious and mindful of your belongings at all times. However, most travelers have a peaceful visit without incidents.
Tap water:

Tap water:Unsafe

Tap water in Panajachel is generally not recommended for consumption. It may carry bacteria and parasites that can cause gastrointestinal diseases, particularly if you're not used to it. It's highly advisable to drink bottled water or sterilize tap water via boiling, filtration system, or sterilization tablets.

Is Panajachel safe to travel?

Is Panajachel safe right now?

Before your visit to Panajachel, 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 10, 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

Safety in Guatemala