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Lago De Atitlán The Endorheic Lake

Wed, Dec 30, 2009 1 Comment


Lake Atitlán is commonly known as Lago de Atitlán. It is a large endorheic lake. The lake does not flow to the ocean or the sea. The lake is located in the Guatemalan Highlands. Despite the fact that Atitlan is documented to be the deepest lake in the entire region of Central America, its base has not been totally sounded. Approximation of its utmost deepness varies up to 340 m. The lake is fashioned by bottomless escarpments which enclose it and by 3 volcanos that are placed on its southern border. Lake Atitlan is more set apart by towns as well as various villages of the Maya inhabitants. Lake Atitlán is located at a distance of 50 km in northwestern direction of the Antigua region.

lake atitlan
Lake Atitlán be supposed to not be puzzled with Lake Amatitlán. Lake Amatitlán is situated around 65 km in southeastern section of the Lake Atitlán and around 16 km to southeastern section of Antigua. Lake Atitlán quite large than that of the Lake Amatitlán.

Lake Amatitlán
The lake is volcanic in starting point, considerably it is a huge caldera that is created due to an outbroke which took place almost 84,000 years ago. It is famous as one of the mainly gorgeous lakes in the entire globe. Aldous Huxley in particular note down of the lake as “Lake Como, it seems to me, touches on the limit of permissibly picturesque, but Atitlán is Como with additional embellishments of several immense volcanoes. It really is too much of a good thing.”

The lake basin helps the widespread growth of coffee as well as a range of ranch crops, the majority particularly corn. Additional important farming harvest includes onions, as well as beans, the squash, and the tomatoes, also the cucumbers, as well as the garlic, the chile verde, also the strawberries, the avocados as well as the pitahaya fruit. The lake itself is wealthy in creature life which supplies a noteworthy food resource for the principally aboriginal populace.


The areas for the foremost time experience the volcanic actions about 11 million years in the past, and in view of the fact that then has witnessed 4 different incidents of volcanic expansion as well as caldera fall down, the mainly current of which started hardly around 1.8 million years ago and concluded in the construction of the current day caldera. The lake now occupies a larger section of the caldera, and reaches the depth at a deepness of 600 m.

The caldera outlining eruption is acknowledged as Los Chocoyos eruption, and expelled up toward 300 cu km of the tephra. The huge eruption sprinkled ash power all across a region of a little more than 6 million sq km. The ash has been found in the region starting from the regions of from and ranges up to Ecuador, and can be easily utilized as a stratigraphic indicator in equally the Pacific as well as the Atlantic oceans (identified as Y-8 ash in oceanic deposits). A chocoyo is a kind of bird which is over and over again discovered living in the comparatively spongy ash coating.

In view of the fact that, the conclusion of Los Chocoyos, continued volcanic actions had constructed 3 volcanoes in the region of the caldera. Volcán Atitlán is located on the southern edge of the caldera, at the same time as Volcán San Pedro as well as Volcán Tolimán is located surrounded by the caldera. San Pedro is supposed to the oldest volcano of the 3 enormous volconos and appears to have closed exploding somewhere around 40,000 years in the past.

Volcan Toliman
Tolimán had started increasing at the time when San Pedro had blocked its eruption and in all probability stays behind full of life, even though it has not blown up in the ancient times. Atitlán has been full-fledged at the majority completely in the preceding 10,000 years, as well as it continued to be alive, with it’s the maximum up to date explodes that had taken place in the year 1853.

In the year 1976 on February 4, a huge earthquake (of magnitude 7.5) took place in the region of Guatemala resulting in the death of other than 26,000 citizens. The earthquake cracked the lake cradle which in a way caused the drainage in the lake at the subsurface, permitting the drop in the water level up 2 m in the course of one month.


The lake is bordered by a number of villages, in which the Maya culture is even today customary as well as the traditional dresses are worn. The Maya citizens of Atitlán are principally Tz’utujil as well as the Kaqchikel. At some stage in the Spanish take-over of the Americas, the population of Kaqchikel basically associated themselves with the attackers to overpower their significant enemies the Tz’utujil as well as the Quiché Maya, however they were themselves under enemy control and were downcasted when they denied forfeiting praise to the Spanish.

maya culture
Santiago Atitlán is the major community in the region of the lake. It is distinguished for its adoration of Maximón, a statue which was created by the combination of conventional Mayan Gods as well as the Catholic saints and also the conquistador myths. The institutionalized statue of Maximón is underneath the power of a native spiritual brotherhood and also it dwells in a variety of homes of its association at some point in the track of a year, being the majority ceremonially stimulated in an imposing demonstration all through the Semana Santa. A number of townships located in the region of Guatemala have comparable religious group, the majority especially the religious groups of San Simón located in the region of Zunil.

At the same time as Maya culture is chief in the majority lakeside groups of people. It is the leading townships established on the shore on the lake, Panajachel, and also has been plagued more than the years by visitors. It fascinated a number of hippies in the year 1960 and even though the war stood out as a reason for the departure foreigners from the region and the conclusion of the aggression in the year 1996, the region experienced a  sudden growth in the number of visitors and today the entire financial system of the township is approximately lock, stock and barrel dependent on tourism.

A number of Mayan archaeological places have been discovered in the region of the lake. Sambaj which is sited roughly 55 ft underneath the existing lake level materializes to be on or after at slightest the pre-classic era. There are remnants of numerous groups of structures, which include one meticulous grouping of huge buildings that are supposed to be the centre of the city.

Other site acknowledged as Chiutinamit, where the remnants of a city were discovered, was exposed by neighboring fishermen said they “noticed what appeared to be a city underwater”. For the duration of resulting examinations, earthenware ruins were found from the place by the divers, which made it possible to date the site to the delayed pre-classic era.

A development designated as “Underwater archeology in the Lake Atitlán. Sambaj 2003 Guatemala” was lately accepted by the administration of Guatemala in collaboration with Fundación Albenga as well as the Lake Museum in Atitlán. GFor the reason of the anxiety of a confidential association as is the Lake Museum in Atitlán the requirement to begin the examination of the domestic waters in the region of Guatemala was examined.

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One Response to “Lago De Atitlán The Endorheic Lake”

  1. vareeja Says:

    The lake is volcanic in origin, filling an enormous caldera formed in an eruption 84,000 years ago.

    It is renowned as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world.

    The lake basin supports extensive coffee growth and a variety of farm crops, most notably corn. Other significant agricultural products include onions, beans, squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, garlic, chile verde, strawberries, avocados and pitahaya fruit.

    The lake itself is rich in animal life which provides a significant food source for the largely indigenous population..


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