Foto: Marvin Grijalva Photography
The "Pacaya Volcano and Laguna de Calderas" National Park, was
created by Governmental Agreement of July 20, 1963, by that time the volcanic cone had already been protected under the Governmental Agreement that declares definitive Closure Zones to all the volcanoes of the country.
The park covers an area of 2,221.62 hectares (according to polygon delimited by RIC) at south of Guatemala City, in the jurisdiction of three municipalities San Vicente
Pacaya, Amatitlán and Villa Canales. The Park has an excellent location, with access from key points in the reception of international tourists, as well as for national visitation. It is accessible by: CA 9 from Guatemala City, RN 14-CA 9 from
Antigua Guatemala, CA-9 from Escuintla, RD 10 from Lake Amatitlán, and RD 10 from Santa Elena Barillas.
In the Park is the Pacaya Volcano,
one of the most active volcanoes in America, and therefore occupies the first places of visitation in the country. The Park is a living example of volcanic activity; In it you can see vestiges of ancient craters, such as the Laguna de Calderas, and the hills
Grande and Chiquito. But also more recent formations like Cerro Chino still active in the 1800's, the petrified lava of El Patrocinio, the MacKenney cone and much more recent crater that formed south of the volcano in May 2010.
In 2008 a coadministration agreement was signed in which the Municipality of San Vicente Pacaya, INAB and CONAP participate. INAB is the administrator according to the government
agreement of July 20, 1963. Coadministers; CONAP, INAB and Municipality of San Vicente Pacaya. Comanagement was established through a co-administration agreement on August 20, 2008. (Master Plan "Pacaya Volcano and Laguna de Calderas" National Park).
CONAP was created through Legislative Decree 4-89, Guatemala's Protected
Areas Act, which also gives life to the Guatemalan Protected Areas System (SIGAP). The objective of the SIGAP is to protect a representative sample of the ecosystems and biodiversity of Guatemala to guarantee its permanence and thus the welfare of present
and future generations.
At present, protected areas can be declared in different management categories that are oriented according to their
characteristics and the activities allowed in them. There are 6 different management categories.
The Protected Area of the Pacaya Volcano and Laguna de Calderas
is included by SIGAP in the category: Type I: National Park / Biological Reserve: These are extensive areas that contain ecosystems, features or species of flora and fauna of interest and scenic wonders. No alterations to the landscape or extraction of resources
are allowed (SIGAP.com).