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Visite XII Festival Tradicional de Danzas Totonicapán 2001,
este 20 y 21 de Octubre

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Surrounded by mountains reaching up to 2500 meters in height, San Miguel Totonicap½n is one of the most beautiful cities of Guatemala. The predominantly Maya-K'iche' community is an artistic and agricultural center, offering travellers the opportunity to visit a community rich in the culture and tradition of both old and new Guatemala, away from the traditional tourist areas.

Artesanias, mayan art, Totonicapan


Artisans in San Miguel Totonicapán are well-known for their textiles, ceramics, bent-wood boxes, baskets, colorful masks and costumes (used in traditional dances), plus a variety of tin, wood, and leather products.


San Miguel Totonicapán is home to many traditional music groups. Some of the traditional instruments they use are the marimba, traditional drum, and the chirimía (a traditional reed flute). There are many opportunities throughout the year to hear these groups play in the city and surrounding areas.


Both pre-Hispanic and colonial in origin, the different traditional dances incorporate colorful masks, costumes, and music into the storytelling of either Mayan history or myths. Normally performed during festivals or on special occasions, some of the most common dances in San Miguel Totonicap½n are the Dance of the Xacalcojes, the Dance of the Pascarines, the Dance of the Monkeys, the Dance of the Deer, the Dance of the Conquest, the Dance of the Cowboys, and the Dance of the Mexicans.

Tours offered

La Casa de la Cultura in San Miguel Totonicapán offers visitors educational and cultural tours of San Miguel Totonicap½n and its surrounding areas. A typical itinerary is:

  • Welcome with coffee and an audiovisual presentation on the cultural history of the area. Visit to the Nim½ K'iche' Morerāa (a workshop that makes masks and costumes for the traditional dances), with an explanation on how the costumes and masks are made, and for what dances they are used for.

    Artisan in Totonicapan

  • Concert featuring several musical groups that use traditional instruments, followed by a discussion of the instruments and the significance of the music.

  • Tour of different artisan workshops in the city, with demonstrations on how the products are made.

  • Traditional lunch prepared and served in a private home followed by a tour of the city. Tour includes a visit to a church, convent, municipal theater, cemetery, and city market. Break for hot chocolate in a popular bakery after tour.

Traditional Foods

Fruit liquor made of nances (a tropical fruit) and cherries.

Tobic (vegetable, beef and cabbage soup)
Literally meaning "made by everyone," all the women in the community make this soup on special occasions, such as weddings. It is cooked in a large ceramic pot and served with corn tamalitos.

Chicken cooked in a sauce of tomatoes, bell peppers, garlic, onion, and spices, served with rice and potatoes.

Fresh fruit of the season cooked in its own juices (usually peaches, apples, cherries, or pears).

Hot drink made of ground corn with barley, cinnamon and brown sugar.

Other Activities in San Miguel Totonicapán

  • Bed and breakfast in a private home.
  • Guided hikes to rural communities to see panoramic views of the area, Mayan altars (with permission), and traditional hot springs.
  • Presentation of traditional indigenous dances.
  • Festivals and fairs.


Adventure Maya K'iche' Casa de la Cultura Totonicapense
Contact: Carlos Humberto Molina
Tel/Fax: 011(502) 766-1575
e-mail: kiche78@hotmail.com
Aventura Maya Kiche Reservation Form <click here> Reservations should be made 2 weeks in advance.
  • Tours offered for groups of 4 to 20 people
  • Please reserve one at least one week in advance
  • Tours offered in Spanish.

Prices for Tours

     Cost per person for complete day program (in US dollars):

4 people
$49 10 people $35
5 people $46 11 people $31
6 people $45 12 people $29
7 people $43 13 people $26
8 people $40 14 people $25
9 people $38 15-20 people $24

Cost per person for a rural walk in the San Miguel Totonicap½n area (including lunch and use of local guide). Tour includes walk to villages around San Miguel Totonicap½n to visit different community development projects, Mayan holy places (with permission), artisan workshops, and schools.

2 people
$15 7 people $9
3 people $14  8 people $8
4 people $13 9 people $7
5 people $12  10 people $6
6 people $10    


Cultura y Turismo Totonicapán,
Guatemala Telefax: (502) 7661575