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Its a beautiful lake, certainly the preffered lake of salvadoreans. Its located only 45 minutes away from San Salvador. Coatepeque is a word that comes from the precolumbian nahuat and means the place of the snake or the mountain of the snake. Lake Coatepeque is located in front of 2 active volanes, Santa Ana and Izalco; and one inactive volcano, Cerro Verde. We consider Lake Coatepeque is on the top 5 places to visit in El Salvador. You can eat at the restaurants, enjoy a local cup of coffee or practice water activities.

The Lake has an excellent condition for the practice of ecotourism. Sightseeing or birdwatching, you can also organize hikes on the surroundings of the Lake, you can also mountainbike on this area. The Lake is ideal for fishing, diving and you can also roam its waters with a kayak, jet ski or boat.

Suggested Itinerary:

Lake Coatepeque is an active volcanic caldera. Is it dangerous? Not at all...its last eruption was thousands of years ago and no extreme activity has been recorded by modern day vulcanologists. Lake Coatepeque is surrounded by the active Santa Ana volcano, active Izalco volcano and the inactive Cerro Verde volcano. 

Cooperativa los Pinos, this is a local, private organization of coffee growers and producers that built their own restaurant to attract tourism to the area. You will get an awesome sight, you can also try excellent local coffee. Food is good, but maybe not awesome, they offer fresh fish and maybe typical salvadoran food like chicken, beef. Cold beers are available. There is a small area for children, a small area to hike. The location of the restaurant is REALLY good. These guys also offer longer hikes down to the Lake, ask them about that...they arent open 7 days a week, so try to contact them before your trip. 
Restaurante Rancho Alegre. They are located lakeside, check google maps, the road can be a little tricky and signalization isnt the best. Rancho Alegre offers fish, cold beer, they have a pool inside the lake and you can also dive directly from the restaurant into the lake. Jetskis are offered and boat trips are offered as well.

Distance from San Salvador is around 45 minutes, distance from airport is around 1:30 hours. Are the roads safe? I have never heard of any robberies or homicides in the area. But I would recommend taking precautions, try not to travel by yourself. If you are driving, try to be as close as possible to other cars. In general, the Lake Coatepeque area is in the countryside; no gangster activity here, no organized crime, people in the countryside is very friendly and helpful, dont be afraid to interact with locals. But I wouldnt recommend stopping in the middle of the road to take pictures, take as many pictures as you want once you are at the restaurants...dont let people see all the cash that you carry, in El Salvador, we hide our money from public view. 

I would say Lake Coatepeque is in the top 5 of El Salvador attractions, you can spend here one hour, or you can spend a whole day. Food is around $10 per person. 

Cost of boat rides or other activities not included in our rate.