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A small, charming town situated on an island in the Petén Itzá lake

Flores, Petén, Guatemala
During the evenings local women open their food stalls next to the waterfront

The town Flores is situated on the San Andrés island in the Petén Itzá Lake. Its island location makes Flores a special place – many restaurants and hotels can be found directly along the waterfront. The small city is dominated by tourism, nevertheless, it could remain its tranquil and quiet atmosphere. You can walk the narrow streets, passing beautiful colonial-style houses. The roads will lead you to the main attraction of the city, the central square with its white shining church. The island Flores is connected to the mainland via a 500 meter long dam, which leads to the city Santa Elena. Here you can find supermarkets, buses and banks.


The tribe of the Itzá reached the north of Petén in the 12th century, after being cast out from Chichén Itzá (Mexico). The Itzá founded Tayasal at the shores of the Petén Itzá lake on a peninsula directly opposite of Flores. Nowadays, Flores is an important hub and starting point for excursions in Petén, as for example to the many Maya sites. The main attraction in the area are the Tikal ruins, but also other Mayan sites, like Yaxhá, Nakum, Uaxactún or El Mirador are from great importance and worth a visit.


Most tourists opt only for a short stay in Flores, which leaves them with just enough time to visit the ruins of Tikal. However, Flores and the surroundings have a lot more on offer. The island location makes it a perfect place for a boat tour on the Petén Itzá lake. You can hire a small boat and visit other cities around the lake. Also you can take a boat ride to the Museo Santa Barbara, a museum about Mayan artifacts situated on a small island west from Flores. You can even take a swim in the lake at one of the public piers and refresh yourself. From Santa Elena, a nice walk leads to the caves Cuevas de Actun Can.