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“The smokey barbecue of saturday morning”
Review of La Palapa

La Palapa
Ranked #11 of 78 Restaurants in Panajachel
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $4 - $10
Cuisines: American, Bar, Barbecue, Pub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Drinks, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Television, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Wine and Beer
Description: La Palapa is a thatched roof bar in the center of Panajachel nightlife. Popular with gringos during the day, night time activities attract travelers and locals looking for fun. Monday is game night, Tuesday karaoke, Wednesday open mic, Thursday trivia competition (free tequila shots for round winners) and Friday and Saturday nights live music with local and national bands. Saturday afternoon is BBQ with Smokin' Joe.
Lake Atitlan
Level Contributor
52 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“The smokey barbecue of saturday morning”
Reviewed May 11, 2012

Great place for saturday lunch where you will find the best selection of barbecue dishes, lots of special sauces, not great for vegetarian, good value

Visited April 2012
Thank AtiArmand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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96 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Panajachel, Guatemala
Level Contributor
17 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“International Bar”
Reviewed April 28, 2012

Great spot to meet other travelers and share ideas. Great live music, drinks, and food!

Visited April 2012
Thank Alison K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“La Palapa = The 'Cheers' of Pana!”
Reviewed April 24, 2012

As a first time visitor to Panajachel, I am grateful I ended up in La Palapa. I felt incredibly welcomed there, like I was in Cheers! It seemed that a lot of the patrons - both the locals and ex-pats - were regulars, and even though I was a first-timer, they were kind enough to treat me like one of them. The staff was amazing too. They were very helpful and offered great suggestions. I visited during Semana Santa (aka Holy Week) and I quickly learned that the village was busier than usual, with tourists visiting from all over Central America. When the staff learned I'd be in town for a few days AFTER Semana Santa, they were quick to amend their recommendations so that I could avoid the traffic that came with the holiday rush, thus enjoying the beautiful sights (the lake!) and fun activities (ziplining!) in a much more calm (i.e. less congested) manner.

Did I mention the food?? Of course, when traveling to a new place, I always have to try the foods of that particular region, but as a stubborn American, sometimes I just want to stick with what I know. Thankfully, La Palapa was there for me. I had an amazing burger and was invited to come back on Saturday "for our weekly BBQ." How they're able to smoke and slather meats that tasted just like they do down south is beyond me! (Well, I guess technically Guatemala is more south than the south, but still!) Also, I don't drink, but the bartender made sure my glass was filled and refilled over and over again with delicious ice cold limonada.

If you ever take a trip down to Pana (the regulars said "No one here calls it by its' full name"), make sure to visit La Palapa. It's more than just a bar/restaurant/hostel, it's a welcoming party too! (I suggest visiting it early, as it just may help shape your whole stay!) - HG (Tucson, AZ)

  • Visited April 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank H G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Panajachel, Guatemala
Level Contributor
57 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“This is the home Bar in Panajachel”
Reviewed February 8, 2012

If you like to hang with Expats for superbowl and other big us sports, this is your place. It is the neighborhood bar here featuring rock'n'roll, Trivia and special parties. Smokey's Gringo BBQ is a big highlight = every troops out for that on Saturdays.

Visited February 2012
Thank didreyfus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great atmosphere, amazing Saturday BBQ, and gracious host”
Reviewed October 29, 2011

La Palapa is the place to be if you are in Panajachel, any night of the week. The owner Ricardo goes out of his way to make you feel welcome and has fun events planned for every night of the week (like Pub Trivia night on Thursdays). This is the place to be if you are looking for fun on Friday and Saturday night. Free flowing drink specials, awesome hamburgers, and if you are lucky enough to be there on a Saturday - the tastiest BBQ in Guatemala - serving up flintstone sized tasty ribs! Your stay in Pana is not complete unless you have spent some time at La Palapa!
K.K - Toronto, Canada

  • Visited September 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank KKmack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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