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San Pedro Hikes: Indian Nose Guatemala

The Indian Nose hike Guatemala was by far one of my favorite experiences I’ve had while traveling. If you’re interested in San Pedro hikes and want to see the best sunrise in Guatemala, you must check out Indian Nose.

Indian Nose: The Best Sunrise San Pedro Hike

Hiking Indian Nose before sunrise means seeing the sun coming up from behind this chain of volcanoes.

Walking around San Pedro, you’ll find no shortage of tour companies offering to take you on the Indian Nose hike. You can also book online through GuateGo or read on for my recommendations…

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. 

Indian Nose Guatemala Itinerary

Indian Nose Hike in Guatemala

Take the bus to San Clara and walk 45 minutes to Indian Nose. Watch the sunrise while drinking coffee, and return to the bus. Leave around 3:45 a.m., and you’ll return to San Pedro by 8 a.m.

The cost of the Indian Nose hike is generally the same across all agents: 100Q per person with a minimum of two people. Sadly, I couldn’t find anyone to take me as a solo traveler—it worked out because I found an alternative tour!

Indian Nose Hike in Guatemala

Quick Tip: Book accommodation, tours and transport ahead of time online to save money and stress. 

Best Lake Atitlan ToursClick here to check out the top Lake Atitlan tours
Best Lake Atitlan Accommodation: Click here to check out the best accommodation in Lake Atitlan
Best Lake Atitlan Transport: Click here to book a bus, ferry, or train in Lake Atitlan

Book Your Indian Nose Tour with Geo Travel Guatemala (Matt the Geologist)

After researching online, I kept coming across people who had taken a tour with a guy called “Matt the Geologist.” Everyone raved about his tour as it lasted much longer, and he talked about how Lake Atitlan was formed and the history of the volcanoes. This sounded right up my street, but I couldn’t find any contact details. Not deterred, I continued looking and eventually found his email address.

Unfortunately, Matt told me I would need to find a group of six people to make the tour possible.

Geo Travel Tour Overview:

  • Depart San Pedro – 04:00 (San Marcos – 04:30)
  • Start hike – 05:00
  • Geology class – 06:30
  • Hike down – 07:30
  • Arrive San Pedro – 09:30 (San Marcos – 09:00)

A few days before I was due to leave, I was not feeling optimistic about the tour happening. However, Matt kindly offered to run the tour for four people with a few tweaks (YAY). We would all go in his car, and we wouldn’t be able to take a local guide or do the walk back through the coffee plantations. Matt did stop and talk to us about coffee on the way down (just without the walk).

Update: Since I did this back in 2016, Matt is now online and you can get more information about all of his tours on his website here.

What to Expect on the Indian Nose Hike

The Indian Nose hike Guatemala is an early start, but worth it. You will leave San Pedro around 4:00 a.m. on a bus to Santa Clara.

Part 1

The first part of the hike from Santa Clara was pretty flat, and we walked quickly over it. It’s dark this early morning, so bring a torch if you have one.

Part 2

The second part of the walk is mainly steps. Matt was great and took it slow, with just enough stops. Despite being in San Pedro for three weeks by this point and going on other Lake Atitlan hikes, I still wasn’t used to the altitude, and it didn’t take long before I was out of breath. If you’re worried, place yourself towards the front of the group to set the pace. Once you reach the top of the steps, you will be glad to know you are halfway up!

Part 3

The third part of the walk was winding up the mountain to the first viewing platform. I found this much more challenging than the steps. At the point when I thought I couldn’t do much more without a quick rest, I looked up and saw the platform—relieved doesn’t begin to describe it!

Indian Nose Hike in Guatemala

When you get to the first platform, the view is pretty spectacular. Sadly, I didn’t get any pictures as I forgot my tripod. Take my word: it was an incredible view seeing the villages beginning to light up. You have a great view down over San Pedro.

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

Part 4

The fourth and final part of this San Pedro hike is a short and steep climb up to the top viewing platform.

When we arrived, we had about 30 minutes to wait before the sun began to rise. Matt kindly let me use his tripod to take a few shots. I just missed Fuego erupting, but the ash cloud still looks pretty cool.

Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike

Bring warm clothes, as it’s pretty chilly up there before sunrise.

We couldn’t have timed it better with Fuego erupting and the sun rising. It was a special moment and the perfect final day for me in San Pedro.

Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike
Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike
Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike

Matt even brings you a cup of proper Guatemalan café!

Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike

The Sunrise

Once the sun is up and you have taken all the pictures you can, the next part of the tour begins. This was the bit I was looking forward to and what makes this tour different from all of the other San Pedro hikes.

Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike

As I mentioned, Matt is a geologist—one of those scientists who loves rocks. As someone who was never particularly interested in geography or geology at school, this talk completely changed my view!

The Geology Talk

To understand the area, you must return to the beginning of time, as Matt explains.

Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike

He talked us through how the earth was formed, tectonic plates, earthquakes, and lava flow. It was fascinating and made me even more aware of this place’s uniqueness. It made me appreciate Lake Atitlan hikes on a whole new level.

Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike

Once the talk was finished, we descended, stopping to discuss corn, coffee, and other interesting local facts.

Indian nose hike,indian nose,hike,San Pedro hike

Honestly, this was one of the most interesting and well-priced tours I have ever taken. If you are interested in local history or geology or getting great images, you must do this Indian Nose Guatemala tour.

From the moment we got into Matt’s car until he dropped us off, he was a vault of local information. He spoke to us about everything from the different languages spoken by the Mayan people to the politics of the local area. This tour was a real treat!

How to Book the Indian Nose Tour

If you’re interested in booking a tour with Matt, his company is Geo Travel Guatemala—you can visit his website here.

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

If you want to stay in San Pedro, I recommend Zoola San Pedro AtitlanAmiGosHotel Tinamit, Cristalinas Cafe, or Hotel & Restaurant at Lake.

In Panajachel, I recommend PanaHouse or Selina Atitlan.

I also wrote an entire accommodation guide for Antigua, Guatemala City, and Lake Atitlan.

Lake Atitlan Travel Guide Planning

🧳 Any recommendations on what I should pack for Lake Atitlan?

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

🚗 Where can I book bus or private transportation while I’m in Lake Atitlan?

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 Lake Atitlan?

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?

Hike to Indian Nose Lake Atitlan Guatemala