LAKEfront VILLA FOR RENT
Map of Guatemala from LonelyPlanet
Public Boats. In Panajachel, there are two docks –one for each side of the lake. Casa Pamakanya is on the San Pedro/Santa Cruz “line". The dock's name is Tzanjuyu. Public boats to Panajachel and San Pedro leave each town daily beginning at 6:00am and continue throughout the day approximately on the half hour. The last public boat heading west from Pana is near sunset or around 6:30/7:00pm and from San Pedro, heading east, is around 5:00. There may be later ones but inquire in the afternoon, or you may find yourself needing to hire a private boat to bring you back for about $25-$35 US. Most of the launch drivers know the Casa Pamakanya dock. If not you can tell them it is past the Jaibalito dock en route to Tzununa.
You can easily catch a boat from Pamakanya to Panajachel, Santa Cruz, San Marcos or San Pedro by waving it down from the Casa Pamakanya dock. The boat for Pana &/or Santa Cruz will come from the right (heading east); the boat to San Marcos &/or San Pedro will come from the left (heading west). The boats come approximately every half an hour. The cost is Q20-30, depending on the driver & the destination – young children are not expected to pay. To go to Santiago Atitlan or any other villages on the south side of the lake you will need to either hire a private boat or take a boat to Pana or San Pedro and catch the public boat from there.
If you are visiting a town or village and will be coming back in the late afternoon…always ask when the last boat will be, or you may end up paying $20-$25 to get home on a private ride!
When you arrive in Pana, if it's still daytime, ask the driver to take you to Chalo's Grocery (Closed Sunday afternoons) or the Super mercado just down the street to stock up on groceries and beer/wine/liquor. You can use a credit card at both of these stores. You may also want to visit the traditional open market which is a few blocks up the street just beyond the Catholic church. Stock up there on fruits and veggies, meat and whatever else looks good.
A list of suggested grocery items and supplies is availablehere.
Questions? Email: Pamakanya@gmail.com
The first stop on the route to Casa Pamakanya is to fly to Guatemala City, the capital. From the airport, a two and a half to three hour ride by car, taxi, bus or prearranged van brings you to the town of Panajachel, on Lago Atitlan. Check your guide book for transportation options, but we suggest that you reserve a private van in advance, which will be waiting and take you directly to the lake. This can be done by contacting the van drivers/companies directly. While public shuttles with set schedules are cheaper, the ride may be drawn out—including lengthy stops in Antigua and possibly other places— and may be crowded. There are many transporation companies available but we like to work with Atitrans.If you are arriving in Guatemala City in the late afternoon or evening we highly recommend you spend your first night in Antigua and then head to the lake the next day. If you will have a car there is a lot near the Panajachel dock where you can pay by the day to park.
Casa Pamakanya is only boat accessible but getting a boat to take you there is not a problem. Once you arrive in Panajachel your driver will take you to the public dock (Tzanjuyu) where you can take a boat taxi (lancha) to Casa Pamakanya. The boats leave every 30 minutes and run until sun down. The ride is about 30 minutes on the public boats. You can also pre-arrange for a private boat to pick you up at the dock and take you directly to the house. This guarantees that you have a ride with no wait and with all of your party and with plenty of room for your luggage. Our favorite private lancha driver is Ramos!
The public lanchas are equipped with life preservers but if traveling with a small child we suggest you bring your own.