Guatemala Volcano Trilogy Hiking Tour is THE mountain challenge in Guatemala. You will ascend and descend three of the most iconic volcanoes of the country – Agua, Fuego and Acatenango, that serve as the backdrop for the colonial city of Antigua – all within 36 hours!
This packing list includes all of the basics that you need to have with you to comfortably do the Guatemala Volcano Trilogy!
I had been on many hiking tours that last over a day where you need to camp. As a result, I was already aware of the basics that I should take with me. However when I booked my tour the guides gave me a few additional recommendations.
Basically you should have all the basics for your safety, but because this is such a challenging route “each pound counts”. This means that you should leave behind any of the items that you take with you for comfort.
Another phrase that stuck with me was “if it (the backpack) is going to be heavy, make it water weight”. You do need to drink a lot of water to successfully complete this really difficult trek.
Using this Trilogia Packing List:
This list assumes that you will be doing the whole tour. It also assumes that you will be carrying your own pack, although you do have the option of hiring a porter to carry it for you. Try to take only what is 100% necessary to reduce the weight. The trails are tough enough and you want to preserve as much energy a possible.
If you have any questions about this packing list, leave a comment below and I’ll try to answer it. Happy Packing!
Thermal shirt – It might not be so useful for hiking when the weather is warm, but you will definitely be glad you have it at night, I used it as pyjama top.
2 Quick-dry moisture-wicking shirts – Try to get the ones that are long sleeved with the option to roll the sleeves up.
Lightweight fleece with hood or another warm layer. I love my Salomon one (similar to the one in the link) for its light weight and warmth.
Waterproof shell with hood – Even if you decide to do this tour during the dry season, the chances of rain are quite high.
Waterproof pants – These will help you stay dry and warm, in the likely event of rain, especially at night.
2 pairs of Convertible hiking pants – Look for the kind that zip off into shorts these are great in case the weather gets too hot.
Thermal leggings – Optional. These are too hot for walking but they are my favourite as pyjamas.
Baseball or sun cap – This will be extremely useful for the day hikes, especially towards the last part towards Acatenango’s summit. There are no trees. If it’s sunny it can feel as if you were in the desert.
Warm hat – Again, great for those short rest stops at night.
Light gloves – Light gloves should be enough.
Anti-shock & retractable hiking poles – I don’t use these very often, (but Laurel uses them on every hike). Because of the steep descends it is a good idea to have a pair. Your knees will thank you! However leave them in your backpack during the ascend to Fuego Volcano, the trail tends to be quite narrow and your hands will do a better job of helping you get up the volcano.
35-45L Backpack. Make sure it has a wide waist band, you will be more comfortable using it. It should also have a built-in rain cover. You will use it for the night hike in Agua Volcano. In it you should have: all of the clothing items that you might need to stay warm, a headlamp with extra batteries, 2 litters of water, 2 snacks, 1 breakfast, emergency thermal blanket and a first aid kit.
60-70L Backpack – You will use this one for Fuego and Acatenango Volcanoes. You will need: All of the clothing previously mentioned, transfer your warm clothes from the small backpack, as well as the first aid kit, 3-4 litres of water, headlamp, emergency blanket, sleeping bag, tent, sleeping mat, 4 meals, (unless you choose the premium option), tons of snacks, quick dry towel, Electrolyte tablets.
Waterproof Bag – All of the contents of your backpacks should be protected in either waterproof or plastic bags in case it rains.
Essentials for the Camp
Sleeping Bag – I would recommend one that is at least warm enough for temperatures around 0°C.
Self-Inflating Air Pad – It will help you stay warm and you back will thank you for using it.
Camp Stove. You are required to cook all your own meals, unless you choose the premium option.
Nutritious Snacks that don’t squish easily. Nuts and dried fruit are good choices. Crackers and wafers get crushed easy and chocolate melts. If you crave something sweet, then gummy bears are a better choice than chocolate since they don’t melt. Apples and oranges are also great since they don’t get smashed easily.
If you choose the regular service option, you also need to bring your own food for 2 breakfasts, lunch and dinner (you’ll have one lunch in the town of Alotenango).
Tons of water – You will need at least two litters for the first volcano and at least 4 more for the other two.
Electrolyte tablets – I probably used this every second day. It was really helpful near the end of the day, when I was ready to power out, but still had more elevation or distance to cover.
Plastic bags – Yes, you have to carry out your toilet paper and all f your trash.
Quick-dry towel – You will be grateful you have one if it rains, if it doesn’t it makes a great blanket.
Headlamp – with extra batteries
Travel Insurance – You should purchase it before you go, then either carry the details with you, or go light and take a photo of the details, so you don’t need to bring extra paper with you. I also like to save a copy to email or Dropbox, just in case I lose my phone.
Bring cash in small bills in local currency. After Agua Volcano you will have a couple of hours in the town of Alotenango where you can buy food but there are no ATMs and they don’t take dollars.
Carry your passport at all times as well as a card with your insurance information. Make sure they are in waterproof containers.
Camera. Optional, but trust me, you’ll want to capture your incredible accomplishment. While I normally use a DSLR, for this trip, I used my iPhone 4. Now I would recommend the Apple iPhone 6, which has a great camera.
That my friends is your complete list for the 3 Volcano Hike in Guatemala! If you have any other essential items for this trip, let me know in the comments below. Happy packing!
Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links meaning that if you buy something I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. I’ve included recommendations for specific products after receiving multiple emails asking for product recommendations.
Lourdes is a soon to be lawyer from Guatemala with the mission to explore each corner of the country. Her favourite activity is hiking along with exploring all mountains, forests, caves, volcanoes and all that the region has to offer. Her goal is to reach as many summits around the world as she can.