What to do in El Paredon
El Paredon is much more than ‘just’ surf, sand and sea. Read on to discover the best places to eat and things to do while your here.
Despite being a small village of just 1,500 people, El Paredon provides a nice variety of eateries and activities. Listed below are some of the different options available.
La Choza Chula’s ‘Chula Tours’ is the award-winning tour operator offering authentic and unique experiences in El Paredon. We offer tour packages and week long cultural immersion experiences for families, groups and students. The tours provide an alternative income stream for our local guides and contribute to the conservation of the local environment. All profits are reinvested in La Choza Chula’s community development projects. What we offer:
Mangrove Tour: Our local guide will paddle you through the mangroves helping you spot the local wildlife and teaching you how to fish in a peaceful spot on the river.
Turtle and Salt Farm Tour: Visit one of only seven sea-turtle feeding grounds in the world where turtles are present all year round. See their heads surface as they come up for air in a beautiful spot, a 20-minute boat ride from El Paredon. On the way back our local guide will take you to the nearby salt farms. Here they will explain the extraction process as you watch the famous El Paredon sunset, before returning for a free turtle themed Chula Bracelet!
Cooking Class: Get a unique insight into a local family’s kitchen with our authentic cooking experience. Learn how to make traditional Guatemalan tortillas, empanadas and more and then eat what you make!
Bracelet Making Class: Learn how to make your own Chula Bracelet. Choose your style and colours and one of our young makers will help you design your bracelet.
El Paredon is a secret surfing paradise with decent waves year-round. Some say it is the best surfing spot in Guatemala. The waves can be very powerful and fast however, so every day brings a new set of challenges. 6-9am is a good time to surf, especially for beginners, when the sea is usually more glassy. It gets windy later in the morning and into the afternoon. The wind normally dies down at around 4pm offering some good rides until sunset. It is a difficult place to learn, and the waves can be unforgiving, but if you learn to surf here, you can surf anywhere!
All of the hostels have board rental services and a couple of local surfers also have a few boards to rent out through their surf school for the kids of El Paredon.
On the basketball court (‘cancha’), in the heart of the village, there is nearly always a game of football being played in the evenings. They are always happy for more players, so feel free to join in.
At various points throughout the year there are also football tournaments on the cancha, (including one organised by La Choza Chula). They are great to watch with the whole village coming out to support their favourite teams. Food is also sold during the matches, so keep your ears open to any tournaments going on and come support the La Choza Chula team!
Yoli’s is based right behind Surf House and offers some of the best value food in town. Here you can get shrimp pasta, cerviche, burritos, vegetarian platter and more, all amazing in taste and for a very reasonable price. (Q20-35)
Priscilla’s is based in the village turning right just before the cancha. It is the place to go for fried chicken (Q10-Q12) and occasionally ‘garnachas’ (3 for Q5 or 6 for Q10).
Sandra’s is the restaurant of Sandra Perez, mother of La Choza Chula librarian, Gaby. Her house is on the main street in front of the bakery. She can do breakfast, lunch or dinner (Q25-Q40) including her great prawn pasta.
Soul Food Kitchen has been set up recently and serves Thai and Indonesian food. It’s well priced and offers a completely different menu to anywhere else in the village, whilst always being served to a very high standard. It is located just before Driftwood on the corner.
Pacifico is based next to Surf House, just off the beach. Here they sell great pizza made in the brick oven (from Q50), as well as pasta and salads. Don’t forget to try their nutella pizza dessert!
El Rancho Boca Barra
El Rancho Boca Barra sells food and drinks, located on the river bank with the sea on one side and the canal on the other. It is a good 20 minutes walk down the beach or 10 mins boat ride from town. This is popular at the weekends with people from Guatemala City.
Street food cooked by locals over a makeshift fire can be found some nights usually near the churches or by the basketball court in the centre of the village. Food includes tostadas, empanadas, burritos, burgers, papusas for Q2-Q15. Be careful to check early for food and don’t get caught out leaving it too late. Most things close down by 8.30pm or run out of food quickly so get in there quick!
Local amenities / facilities / shops
The La Choza Chula shop is in the heart of the village, just past the basketball court and next to the canal. Here you can buy all of La Choza Chula’s products, from our surf-board socks, laptop cases, yoga mat bags and customised clothing range, made by local women, to our Chula Bracelets made by local teenagers. All profits from these products are invested back into La Choza Chula’s educational programmes. You can also book transport and Chula Tours from the shop.
To find out more about our products, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are 13 small family-run stores in the village including two pharmacies, a bakery and a stationary shop. The general ‘tiendas’ are full of your obvious basics. A couple of the shops sell milk in cartons, yoghurt and ice cream.
Bakery – It is on the main street heading out of town in the direction of the hostels. There’s a good range of different types of bread, as well as small cakes and biscuits.
Fish/prawns – To get the freshest fish, walk down to boats / lanchas (by La Choza Chula shop) where the fishermen come in and ask around for what has been caught. Further along the river, towards where it meets the sea, is a house with a wide variety of of fish and prawns.
Every Monday in the basketball court, the Fruit and Veg Market comes selling an excellent range of food including bananas, herbs, radishes, broccoli, potatoes, spinach and more. Make sure to get there as soon as it arrives after 1pm, before the best stuff goes!
Once a month in the cancha the Mexican market arrives, selling a random selection of goods – tupperware, toys, DVDs, crockery, bleach, popcorn, matches, a basic range of toiletries and more.
Every other Tuesday morning comes the Second hand clothing truck under the trees by the mayor’s house filled with donations from the States. Q2-20