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Fiestas in the western highlands

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The western highlands are the home of the traditional Guatemalan fiesta. These are some highlights.

January

18–20

San Sebastián Coatan

22–26

San Pablo La Laguna, main day 25th

23–27

San Pablo, department of San Marcos

February

Jan 28–Feb 2

Chiantla, main day 2nd

Jan 28–Feb 2

Jacaltenango

8

Ostuncalco

8–13

Santa Eulalia, main day 8th

March

Varies

Chajul, the second Friday in Lent marked by huge pilgrimages

Holy Week

Santiago Atitlán, Maximón paraded through the streets, usually on the Wednesday; San Cristóbal Tonicapán, the biggest processions in the Xela area

April

22–28

San Marcos, main day 25th

24

San Jorge La Laguna

25

San Marcos La Laguna

29–May 4

Barillas

Varies

Zacualpa and Aguacatán, fiestas to mark forty days from Holy Week

May

6–10

Uspantán, main day 8th

8–10

Santa Cruz La Laguna

June

12–14

San Antonio Palopó, Lago de Atitlán, main day 13th

21–25

San Juan Ixcoy, north of Huehuetenango

21–25

Olintepeque, just north of Quetzaltenango

22–25

Cotzal, main day 24th

22–26

San Juan Atitán, main day 24th

23–26

San Juan La Laguna, main day 24th

24

Comalapa

24–30

San Pedro Sacatepéquez

26–30

Soloma, main day 29th

27–30

San Pedro La Laguna, main day 29th

28–30

Almolonga, main day 29th

July

12–17

Huehuetenango

21–Aug 4

Momostenango, the 25th is a very important day in the Maya religious calendar, and the 1st is the main fiesta day

22–27

Chimaltenango, main day 26th

23–27

Santiago Atitlán, main day 25th

August

1–4

Sacapulas, main day 4th

9–15

Joyabaj, main day 15th. Superb fiesta; traditional dances here include the Palo Volador

10–13

Santa Clara La Laguna, main day 12th

11–17

Sololá, main day 15th

12–15

Nebaj, main day 15th

14–19

Santa Cruz del Quiché, main day 18th

September

12–18

Quetzaltenango, main day 15th

17–21

San Mateo Ixtatán, main day 21st

24–30

Totonicapán, main day 29th

25–30

San Miguel Acatán, main day 29th

26–Oct 5

Tecpán

October

1–6

San Francisco el Alto, main day 4th

2–6

Panajachel, main day 4th

15–20

San Lucas Tolimán, Lago de Atitlán, main day 18th

November

1–2

Todos Santos Cuchumatán, a wild, alcohol-infused horse race on the 1st, with everyone heading to the cemetery on the 2nd for All Souls’ Day

7–12

San Martín Jilotepeque, main day 11th

22–26

Zunil, main day 25th

23–26

Nahualá, main day 25th

25

Santa Catarina Palopó, Lago de Atitlán

27–Dec 1

San Andrés Xecul, main day 30th

December

5–8

Huehuetenango, main day 8th

7

The Burning of the Devil is celebrated in most highland towns with bonfires and men running around dressed as devils

14–21

Chichicastenango, very impressive fiesta, main day 21st

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