El Salvador

Things To Do: Hike To Santa Ana Volcano


A couple of days ago I went hiking to this volcano in Santa Ana with my father, it’s called Ilamatepeque volcano ( best known as San Ana volcano ), in El Salvador, which is where I’m from ( in case you didn’t know that ).

This is the highest and most active volcano in El Salvador: it is 2129 meters above sea level, but I must say that it is not that difficult to hike, just make sure you sleep well the night before ( that’s something I didn’t do :S ) and you’ll be Ok.
This is a fun thing to do in El Salvador, it’s not expensive and the view here is amazing, below you can check out some pictures I took.

How do you get here? There are buses that can take you here, I’ve seen this company do that: El Salvador Turismo or you can also get here by car, make sure to look up for Cerro Verde ( Waze can take you ) it’s like 1 hour away from San Salvador.



The road is fine..but needs a little maintenance, however, you don’t need a huge pick up to get by.



This is the parking lot at Cerro Verde.
Entrance is $1 for salvadoreans and $3 for tourists.
When you begin the hike, they will charge you like $1 I think, because you have to go through some private property, so that’s the agreement they made with the owners so they can let people go through.


Cerro Verde.


That’s the Izalco volcano.
Cerro Verde is right in the middle of 2 volcanos: Izalco, which is the one behind and Ilamatepeque ( best known as Santa Ana volcano ), from Cerro Verde you can choose to hike either one.
P.s: Izalco is a lot harder because there’s only sand and ashes, no trees, so you will fall A LOT.


And this is the amazing view, still from Cerro Verde.


Volcan de Izalco.



And the hike begins. We were a group of about 50.
People just go to Cerro Verde and ask for this hike and they just make 1 big group to go.
Hike begins at 11am, so make sure to get there in time.
What do you need?
– Sneakers, no flats, sandals or anything like that.
– Comfortable clothes.
– Sweater: the temperature was about 20C, for Salvadoreans that’s cold, because as I have mentioned before in other posts, we have a summer weather all year long.
– Sunglasses: if there’s a lot of wind, the dust will go straight to your face.
– Water, they recommend 1 liter per person.
– Snacks.
– Camera, obviously.


And that’s San Ana volcano.


Some of the viewing decks on the trail.
People climbing to the top.
There was A LOT of wind that day, actually it was so windy that they didn’t let us go see the crater because the wind pushes people and there’s nothing to hold on to, so the guides and the police decided to stop the tour there. But if there hand’t been such a hard wind, we could have seen this:
Picture taken from Don’t forget to Move.
I plan to go back in March, when there is no wind or rain and I hope I will get to see this in person 🙂
The hike was awesome, we enjoyed it a lot, it’s a fun thing to do in El Salvador and you have guides during the tour and also the police goes with you for security.
A quick overview of that day so you can schedule: We left San Salvador at 9:30am, got to Cerro Verde at 10:30. Took pictures, checked out the place. At 10:45am they gather people and give all the instructions.  At 11am the hike begins and they expect you to get to the crater at 12:30pm. Descend begins at 1pm, and you get to Cerro Verde at about 2:45pm.
This is a lake that is also in San Ana, it’s called Coatepeque lake and you can see it on the road from Cerro Verde.  There are a lot of houses around the lake and you can do water sports there ( bonus view, uh? )



And this is the view from the road. To the left you can see Izalco and to the right you can see Santa Ana volcano full of clouds. In the middle is Cerro Verde.



I hope you liked the pictures! It was a nice experience. By the way, these kind of trips are part of my new year resolutions 🙂 I plan to start going to places like this during 2015 because there are a lot of things in El Salvador that are worth seeing and a lot of people don’t know about.
Internal tourism can be really nice too 🙂
Until next time,