We weren’t originally planning on spending too much time in Santa Cruz but that’s where fate (and our last minute planning) led us. While Santa Cruz doesn’t have as much to offer as San Pedro and San Marcos, it is definitely a nice place to stay on the lake.
Read all about Lake Atitlan here and all of our Guatemala travels here.
Where To Stay
When we first visited Santa Cruz we stayed at Free Cerveza, a glamping hostel that literally translates to “Free Beer.” And free beer they had! Well, 2 hours of all you can drink beer included with your $10 dinner. It was a blast! The dinner was communal family style and the vibes were as great as the view. Free Cerveza is a great place to meet people as the weak wifi is replaced with board games and free kayaks. However, 2 nights was plenty. The tent potentially had mold and the bathrooms are abysmal at best.
When we returned to Santa Cruz with Grant’s family we rented a huge villa with stunning lake views and incredible grounds. The house has so much unique, local art and too many plants to count. The steps we had to climb daily were super steep but totally worth the incredible view.
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What To Do
Kayak or Paddleboard
We took out the kayak at Free Cerveza for a bit and it was fun. Be sure to go on a day with smooth water and no wind or it is super hard! If one is not included in your accommodations a few places in Santa Cruz rent kayaks and stand up paddle boards too.
There isn’t too much to do in Santa Cruz, so embrace the lounging lake lifestyle. Read a book and get a tan!
That’s right! You can scuba dive the lake. While we typically prefer saltwater diving to fresh (except for Tulum’s cenotes of couse) this sounded pretty interesting. Apparently there is an underwater hotel you can see and a spot where you can cook an egg underwater due to the volcanic heat! What?! Unfortunately we weren’t able to do it because you have to plan your trip accordingly due to the altitude. You can book it with ATI Divers at La Iguana Perdida.
La Iguana Perdida is a restaurant and hostel in Santa Cruz. We had dinner at their Saturday night BBQ buffet. They have a nice location and the food is pretty good.
Boat to Other Places
Santa Cruz was a nice home base but we boated over to San Marcos and San Pedro to spend the day where there is a little more going on.
While the tourism scene isn’t big here yet, Santa Cruz is the perfect place to relax and unwind on the lake.
Want more information to plan your trip to Santa Cruz La Laguna? Check out the Guatemala Lonely Planet here.