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Jocotenango Church
Jocotenango Church
Jocotenango is located in Guatemala
Location in Guatemala
Coordinates: 14°34′55″N 90°44′37″W / 14.58194°N 90.74361°W / 14.58194; -90.74361Coordinates: 14°34′55″N 90°44′37″W / 14.58194°N 90.74361°W / 14.58194; -90.74361
Country  Guatemala
Department Sacatepéquez
 • Total 9 km2 (3 sq mi)
Population (2002)
 • Total 18,562
Time zone Central Time (UTC-6)

Jocotenango (alternate: Xocotenango; translation from Kaqchikel: "place of many plums")[1] is a small municipality in the northeast section of Guatemalan department of Sacatepéquez,[2] and is situated north of Antigua Guatemala. It has seven zones, two villages, and one hamlet. According to the 2002 Guatemalan Census, the municipality has a total population of 18,562 or which approximately 1,072 are native population and the balance are non-indigenous; and approximately 16,692 live in an urban area, while the balance are rural dwellers.[3]

Jocotenango is the birthplace of Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter Ricardo Arjona.


Previously considered a suburb, it received municipality status in the middle of the 19th century.[1]


It is 9.96 sq mi (25.8 km2) in size and is situated 1,540 m (5,050 ft) above sea level. Cerro El Narizón ("Big Nose Mountain"), one of the peaks of the El Rejon range is nearby, reaching an elevation of 2,247 m (7,372 ft). Hydrographic features include the Rio Guacalate, streams, and a creek. Jocotenango is located in a mountainous rain forest in a sub-tropical region. According to the 2003 Ministerio de Agricultura report, approximately 93 hectares are used for agriculture, while 75 hectares are in forest. Deposits of Placedrín Andesite have been found here.[4]

Vulnerability to natural disaster is evidenced by severe erosion to the Rio Guacalate basin, forest fires, accelerated deforestation, and floods. Slope sediment, along with poor soil management, is most visible in the villages of La Rinconada and Vista Hermosa. An annual threat to the populated areas is flooding during periods of rainfall. It requires the municipality to clear hundreds of cubic meters of sediment that accumulates in the streets. This type of erosion causes loss of productive soil capacity, exposure of basement rock, and generation of landslides and mudslides.[5]

The average rainfall is 1344 mm/year while the temperature varies between 16 and 23 °C.[2]

Flora and fauna[edit]

The forest coverage rate is important for town's socioeconomics. Most of the wooded area, is located on the hill Panza de Burro and near the municipal yard. Flora includes species of oak, cypress, and palo de jiote (Bursera simaruba).[6]

The fauna is associated with crops that predominate the area such as cotuza, coyote, mouse opossum, rabbit, squirrels, white-tailed deer, and gophers. Birds include, hummingbird, quail, hawk, and dove.[6]


The red brick Jocotenango Church lies in the town.

La Azotea ("roof") Cultural Center features, built on an ancient coffee estate,[7] has three museums. Casa K’ojom ("House of K'ojom"), a music museum, features traditional Maya musical instruments such as diatomic harp, drums, flutes, marimbas, ocarinas, and whistles. Masks, paintings, traditional costumes and crafts are also exhibited. The Museo del Café ("Museum of Coffee") is dedicated to the history and evolution of coffee cultivation. Coffee beans are displayed in varying stages of production, antique equipment can be viewed, and as it is situated at an actual plantation, on-site tours are available.[8] There is also a small costume museum.[9]

Its main festival is celebrated each year during the week of August 8.[1]


Buses bound from Antigua’s bus terminal to Chimaltenango stop at Jocotenango.[8]


  1. ^ a b c "Jocotenango, Sacatepéquez". (in Spanish). Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Plan de Reconstruccion Departamental de Sacatepequez" (in Spanish). Government of Guatemala. January 2006. p. 9. Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  3. ^ Plan, p. 14
  4. ^ Plan, pp. 9–10
  5. ^ Plan, pp. 11–12
  6. ^ a b Plan, p. 10
  7. ^ "Centro Cultural la Azotea". Retrieved 19 October 2010. 
  8. ^ a b "Jocotenango". Moon Travel Guides. Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  9. ^ "Jocotenango, Antigua Guatemala". Retrieved 17 October 2010. 

External links[edit]