Probably the most bizarre and exciting adventure I’ve ever done, the Acatenango volcano overnight hike is legendary – mostly for good reasons – and is a must-do if the weather allows for it.
The climb begins around 7 am and you may have to haul your camping gear on your back all the way up the mountain, depending on what tour company you booked, with so make sure you’re well rested and ready to go. Just shy of 4,000 meters, Acatenango is the third highest volcano in Central America and takes a good 4-5 hours just to climb to basecamp (3400m) where you’ll pitch your tent, drink with friends and sit back and enjoy volcano Fuego erupting right in front of you all night. The next day you wake up before dawn and make the 1-2 hour hike to the summit where you watch the amazing sunrise over volcano Fuego.
I climbed Acatenango in March 2017, just two after a freezing blast killed six trained climbers and 15 months before Fuego’s catastrophic eruption that killed 69 and left hundreds of others injured. So, it goes without saying, proceed with caution if you’re going to climb Acatenango or if you’re anywhere near volcano Fuego. If Fuego were to erupt though, being on top of Acatenango would be one of the safest places, so moreover, just make sure you’re physically fit enough for the grueling climb.