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Best Beaches in Guatemala: El Paredon

Does Guatemala have beaches? You bet! Regarding beaches in Guatemala, is a top place to try surfing in Guatemala. is the best beach in Guatemala, in my opinion, and a short ride from Antigua. In this post, I’m sharing how to get from Antigua to El Peradon Guatemala, can’t-miss places to visit, and recommendations for El Peradon Guatemala surf camps.

Your options for beaches in Guatemala are pretty slim. Monterrico is the more popular Guatemalan beach, as it’s more developed and has many places to stay. But it is further from AntiguaI settled on because it was much quieter and more ‘tranquilo’!

Plus, El Paredon is a better destination to surf Guatemala.

Did You Get Travel Insurance Yet?

The Insurance companies I recommend are Hey Mondo and Safety Wing

Hey Mondo is great if you are looking for a great value flexible policy. They offer single-trip cover, annual multi-trip cover, and long-term travel cover. Safety Wing is great value, with monthly coverage starting at $45.08. It’s super easy to use, and it just renews each month. I currently use them as they offer me free cover for my son as part of my policy.

Read my full travel insurance post here, where I go into detail about all companies. 

What to Know About Visiting El Paredon Guatemala

  • is a black sand beach you will likely have to yourself!
  • There are only about five places to stay in El Paredon (it is growing).
  • To try the El Paredon Guatemala surf scene, you must go early in the morning or after 5:00 p.m.
  • There is little to no WiFi in El Paredon.
  • Although there aren’t many restaurant choices, the food is fantastic.
  • El Paredon is the best beach in Guatemala for relaxation.
  • For a mix of quiet and parties, visit The Driftwood Surfer.
  • Things are changing quickly in El Paredon as more hotels, restaurants, and tourist attractions are built.
  • It’s one of the best places to try surfing in Guatemala—in fact, The Guardian thinks it’s one of the top 10 in the world!
The Ultimate Guide to visiting El Paredon from Antigua

Quick Tip: Book accommodation, tours, and transport ahead of time online to save money and stress. 
Best El Paredon ToursBest El Paredon Accommodation: Click here to check out the best accommodation in El Paredon
Best El Paredon Transport: Click here to book a bus, ferry, or train in El Paredon

Where is El Paredon?

is a small fishing village in Guatemala, with the Pacific Ocean to the southeast and the on the northwest side. It’s a two to 2.5-hour bus ride from Antigua. I’m usually an advocate for public transportation, but in this case, it’s not worth it. If you decide to take a Chicken Bus from Antigua to El Paredon, it will take you six hours!

The tourist bus costs around 125Q. You can book through your accommodations or GuateGo

Where to Stay in El Paredon

As mentioned, there aren’t many places to stay in El Paredon (yet). The most popular places to stay in El Paredon are:

The Driftwood Surfer: The party place

: More expensive and usually booked up

: Cheap, basic accommodations

: Stay here for a retreat experience

Soul Food Kitchen and Guesthouse: Home to the best Thai food in Guatemala, and the owner is a pretty cool guy

Cocorí Lodge Paredón: I haven’t stayed here, but the reviews are positive

Swell Guatemala: The trendiest place to stay in El Paredon

Quick Tip: View my full Guatemala packing guide here including a downloadable checklist. And check out my Guatemala Essentials shopping list here.

Top Tip: Always book accommodations before you arrive! Since there aren’t many hotels, you will be sleeping on the beach if they’re all full. I’ve linked to most of the places on Booking.comyou must call the unlinked places to book. You can also email, but calling is preferred since the WiFi in Guatemala isn’t great.

Unfortunately, I didn’t confirm my booking before going to El Paredon and wandered down the beach looking for somewhere to stay. This was a blessing in disguise because I stumbled upon .

When I visited, the hotel was called Finka Mistia. Since then, the ownership has changed, and it’s now called. Allen, who runs the place, was accommodating and showed me to the dorm room. When he told me it was only 100Q a night, I couldn’t give him my money fast enough! The prices have probably increased by now, but I would have paid more to stay there.

This place was a breath of fresh air after being turned away by other places in El Paredon that weren’t very helpful. Although it had recently opened and was still a work in progress, I could see the potential. I’m sure it’s finished now and much better equipped.

If you are going to El Paredon, book your stay at !

Where to Eat in El Paredon

There isn’t much food variety in El Paredon, but it’s home to some of the best and cheapest food I’ve eaten in Guatemala.


This is a popular local food place that serves delicious fish—if you want to try fish in Guatemala, this is the place to do it! They also have incredible pancakes for breakfast and superb smoothies.

The Ultimate Guide to visiting El Paredon from Antigua

The owner, Garry, is friendly and knows how to make some great food. He made the best Thai curry I’ve had outside of Thailand! Your options are Thai curry, Indian curry, or noodles. The restaurant moved since I went there, and you can also stay in his guest house. 


I didn’t see the full menu here, but I have it on good authority they serve the best pizza in Guatemala. I can safely say their breakfast waffle was the best I’ve eaten in a long time.

If you’re looking for the best places to eat in Antigua, read this post for my favorite restaurants, cafes, and breweries in Antigua.

The Ultimate Guide to visiting El Paredon from Antigua

The El Paredon Guatemala Surf Scene: Best Surfing in Guatemala?

Unless you’re a good surfer and know what you’re doing, take at least one surf Guatemala lesson before venturing out alone.

The Ultimate Guide to visiting El Paredon from Antigua

I sat in my hammock and watched surfers being thrown around for most of the day. This is not the place to casually swim in the water and play around! One of the guys staying in my dorm told me his friend broke his board the day before, so he was mostly bodyboarding because it was too wild out there. While conditions are not always this extreme, it’s essential to exercise caution.

  • A surfboard rental is about 60Q for three hours or 100Q for a day
  • Surf lessons are around 100Q an hour

If you speak to someone at your accommodations, they can organize lessons for you. You can often negotiate a discounted price to take multiple classes if you stay for several days.

Two reputable El Paredon Guatemala surf companies are El Paredon Surfing School and Pacifico Tours. They’re not online, so reach out to them once arriving in El Paredon.

Best Surf Retreats in El Paredon


Two people visiting El Paredon, sitting in front of a house with a pool.

Shanti Experiences & Wellness provides a range of activities like surfing, yoga, wakeboarding, and kayaking, all set in a serene environment with 20 km of mangrove reservoir for water sports. Shanti has an infinity marble pool, jungle gym, and sunset viewing spots, creating a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure at Shanti Experiences.

Price: from $119 / night
Shanti Experiences & Wellness:

  • Surf
  • Yoga
  • Wakeboarding
  • Kayaking & Paddle Boarding


  • Restorative Massages
  • Cold plunge therapy
  • Open Sea Fishing Tours

Ka´ana Surf

An aerial view of a beach house with a pool near El Paredon, Guatemala, featuring a thatched roof.

Kaana Surf provides a tranquil and laid-back atmosphere, ensuring a memorable experience with amenities such as beach access, a sunlit pool, and professional surf lessons.

Price: From $155 / night

Ka’ana Surf Experiences:

Kayak Mangrove Tours:

  • Adventure into the mangrove on a kayak.
  • Safely paddle and explore the mangrove inlets.
  • Enjoy the wildlife of Guatemala´s Pacific coast.


  • Take a surf lesson with professional surf instructors.
  • Boards and boogie boards rental.

Turtle Releasing:

  • Experience the feeling of releasing baby turtles into the sea at sunset.
  • Available according to the season.

Mangrove Tours:

  • Take a guided tour along the canal of Chiquimulilla.
  • Experience the laid-back vibe while watching all kinds of sea birds and turtles.

Paredon Surf House

A person's legs relaxing in a hammock amidst the pristine beaches of El Paredon, Guatemala.

The Surf House at El Paredón is a cozy and friendly beach accommodation situated in the charming fishing village of El Paredón, a popular surfing destination conveniently located 2 hours from Guatemala City and Antigua. Whether you prefer relaxing on the beach or by our freshwater swimming pool, catching waves at some of Guatemala’s best surf spots, engaging in beach volleyball, joining boat tours of the mangrove natural reserve, participating in community tours and activities, or observing turtles, there’s something for everyone

Price : From $70 / night


  • Baggage storage
  • Laundry service
  • Swimming Pool
  • Valet service

What Else is There to Do in El Paredon?

The Ultimate Guide to visiting El Paredon from Antigua

Take a tour with La Choza Chula. They are a local not-for-profit company that’s done great work in the local community by building schools and libraries. I took the turtle tour—while the turtles were quiet, it was a great tour, and I enjoyed learning about the organization.

The Ultimate Guide to visiting El Paredon from Antigua

If you are a bit of an adventure junkie, you could also book a Summit to Surf Tour through OX Expeditions. This tour involves hiking Volcan Acatenango, where you’ll camp for the night. When you return to Antigua, they organize your transportation, accommodations, and surfing lessons.

How Long to Stay in El Paredon

Antigua to El Paredon,antigua,el paredon,visiting el paredon,surfing in guatemala,beaches in guatemala

I only spent one night in El Paredon, which was not enough! I would suggest a minimum of two nights to relax, take a surf lesson, and go turtle-watching! If you want to stay longer, I recommend speaking to La Choza Chula—they offer many volunteer opportunities.

Looking for somewhere to stay? Check out these options!
Paredon Surf House
Ka´ana Surf

El Paredon Travel Guide Planning

🧳 Any recommendations on what I should pack for El Paredon?

Yes! I have created a whole packing guide to El Paredon which you can read here and you can also check out my packing list for El Paredon on Amazon here.

🚗 Where can I book bus or private transportation while I’m in El Paredon?

I strongly recommend using GottoGo. You can book almost all transport in the major tourist destinations through them online. They don’t just cover buses they also cover shuttles, ferries, and private drivers.

🎫 Where can I buy tickets for museums, attractions, and tours in El Paredon?

I recommend either Viator or GetYour Guide. They have a lot of options!

👩‍⚕️ What is the best insurance to have while traveling?

I recommend using Heymondo for a great value policy. The app also offers you 24/7 Dr Chat. For Digital Nomads check out SafetyWing digital nomad insurance.

I have also written a blog post covering all my recommended travel insurance here

✈️ Any flight recommendations?

WayAWay offers you cheap flights with cashback. You can use this code CLAIRE22 to get 10% off. Otherwise Skyscanner or Expedia are my go-to flight searching platforms.

📱What do you use for internet connection while traveling?

I’m a big fan of personal WiFi devices and they have saved my ass so many times when traveling. I wrote a full review of the top travel WiFi devices you can read here. I personally use GlocalMe as I can either pop in a physical sim card or use their local carrier.

With regards to my phone connection, I use e-sims while traveling, so rather than having to swap out my regular sim card I can download the app and buy a virtual sim card. I recommend using eitherAirhub or Alosim. Both have great coverage of multiple countries and are very easy to use.

🛏️ What is the best platform to use for booking accommodation?

The 3 best platforms that I normally use are, and Expedia They offer great deals and multiple options. I always check all three to be sure of the best deals.

🛅 Do you have any luggage recommendations for traveling?

I do have a complete list of the best packing and luggage products that I recommend, you can check the list here. I’m currently traveling with this suitcase and this backpack. 

El Paredon: Best Beaches in Guatemala Final Thoughts

Does Guatemala have beaches? Not many, but there are a few, like El Paredon, that you can’t miss. Take my advice and visit El Paredon before everyone else realizes how amazing it is! It’s the perfect destination to try surfing in Guatemala and relax by one of the best beaches in Guatemala.

The only company I recommend for booking transport and tours in Guatemala (other than the individuals and companies I have named) is GuateGo. They are a Guatemalan-owned company that has combined all the transportation and tour options in one easy-to-use website. You can book Guatemalan transportation and tours with them here.