Cecilinda, San Juan Chamelco.
8 km south east of Cobán, 6 km from San Juan Chamelco. At the hermita/puesto de salud in aldea Santa Cecilia, San Juan Chamelco. In Chamelco, take a bus or pickup truck going to Chamil from the corner of zero Calle and zero Avenida. Ask the driver to let you off at the Rey Marcos cave.
All year daily 8-17.
Reservations by WhatsApp at phone numbers required.
Paquete #1: Adults GTQ 100.
Paquete #2: Adults GTQ 75.
Paquete #3: Adults GTQ 50.
|Classification:||Karst Cave River Cave|
|Light:||Incandescent Electric Light System helmet, boots and light provided|
|Guided tours:||D=1 h.|
Grutas del Rey Marcos, San Juan Chamelco, Alta Verapaz.
Iván Fernández, Tel: +502-5308-9307.
Diego Fernández, Tel: +502-5161-0469.
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|1998||cave first explored by Óscar and Iván Fernández.|
|1999||cave opened as a show cave.|
The Grutas del Rey Marcos (Grottoes of King Marcos) is a recent discovery and is said to contain some of the most beautiful decorations of any cave in Central America. There are huge stalagmites with filigree translucent ornamentation. The cave is developed with trails and electric light in the entrance section. But most of the tour is semi wild. You have to wade through the underground river at one point to see some of the best stalactites and stalagmites. There is also a rope across the river, where you can cross if you are fit enough.
The cave were known and visited since pre-Columbian times. They are still visited for Mayan ceremonies. But the cave behind the sacred resourgence was never explored, until the owner of the area, Óscar and Iván Fernández, first explored the cave in May 1998. The cave was included as a tourist site into the spa.
The cave is located above Cecilinda, a famous bathing and picnic spot, where a spring gushes forth from the mountainside into a series of pools and waterfalls. There is also an artificial children's pool, a zipline, and scenic hiking trails up the mountain through lush rainforest. A restaurant, open on weekends, features typical Guatemalan cuisine, and a tienda offers soft drinks and snacks. It's possible to stay overnight at rooms or in bungalows, and they offer a camping ground. The site is recently advertised as eco-tourism.
The operators of the spa and show cave offer various packages. Paquete #1 includes park, cave, canopy, boat, and churrasco for lunch. Paquete #2 includes park, cave, canopy, and boat. Paquete #3 includes park and cave. This is only relevant if you visit the cave individually. Many operators include the site in their day trips.