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Central American Journey
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This trip has alternate itineraries available. Please select your preferred option to see itinerary and pricing.
Until Jul 18

Escape the resorts and discover something extraordinary in Central America. Visit seven countries on this adventure and experience mighty ruins, clear Caribbean waters, Pacific waves, rainforests, and breathtaking scenery along the way. Explore indigenous Mayan villages and meet locals for an immersive experience that few travellers get to know. While you're free to choose your own adventure, your accommodation and transportation are included. Our expert CEOs will help you make the most of your time. Take a trip that's packed with all the things you need and nothing you don't – 32 days of maximum adventure at minimum cost.

Latin America
  • Duration: 32 Days
  • Guaranteed Departure: Yes
  • For lovers of:
  • Physical rating: Average
  • Accommodation standard:   Not Rated%
  • Traveller Tour Rating: 0%  
  • Your Guide: English speaking
  • Supplier Tour ID: JCS.C/222036
  • Starts: Playa del Carmen, Mexico
  • Finishes: San José, Costa Rica
You will Visit
  • Playa del Carmen
  • Caye Caulker
  • San Ignacio
  • Flores
  • Rio Dulce
  • Antigua Guatemala
  • Panajachel
  • San Juan La Laguna
  • Copán
  • Suchitoto
  • Playa El Tunco
  • Santa Teresa
  • Monteverde
  • La Fortuna
  • San José

Itinerary

01

Day 1: Playa del Carmen

Arrive at any time.
Check into our hotel and enjoy the city.

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Day 2: Playa del Carmen

Enjoy free time to explore the Mayan ruins of Tulúm or the diving mecca of Cozumel. Or just play in the waves and enjoy the beach.
Start your holiday off with some hardcore relaxation. Enjoy a full day of free time to fill as you wish. Get your ruin on with a visit to Tulum perched atop the sea, explore the fish- and coral-filled seas around Cozumel on a scuba dive, go swimming in a cenote or at the beach, and save some energy for a night out on the town.

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Day 3: Playa del Carmen/Caye Caulker

Opt to snorkel with stingrays and nurse sharks at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, go diving or just chill out, Belizean style.
Mention Belize and you may conjure up visions of unbelievably clear blue waters, diving and snorkelling along the barrier reef and remarkable marine life. Belize also boasts huge swaths of jungle, ancient Mayan ruins, and above all, friendly, easygoing people. Belize is all this and much more!

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Day 4: Caye Caulker

Opt to snorkel with stingrays and nurse sharks at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, go diving or just chill out, Belizean style.

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Day 5: Caye Caulker

Opt to snorkel with stingrays and nurse sharks at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, go diving or just chill out, Belizean style.

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Day 6: Caye Caulker/San Ignacio

Travel by boat and bus from Caye Caulker to San Ignacio. Enjoy an included pottery demonstration and local lunch at a G Adventures-supported women's pottery cooperative.
From the town of San Ignacio, opportunities abound for exploring Belize's little known inland scenic beauty. With free time here, choose to explore the area by foot, canoe or horse, take a caving trip, or visit the Mountain Pine Ridge Area and swim in its inviting pools and rivers.

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Day 7: San Ignacio

Opt to visit the sacred Mayan cave Actun Tunichil Muknal or check out the seldom-visited Mayan ruins of Xunantunich.

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Day 8: San Ignacio/Flores

Learn about Mayan culture and history on a guided tour of the ruins of Tikal.
Cross the border into Guatemala and you immediately notice the difference in culture, with its heavy Mayan influence and Spanish language. Here we have entered Guatemala's northeast jungle Petén region. The descendants of the Maya of Chichén Itzá migrated to the Petén area several centuries after the collapse of the great Mayan cities in the Yucatán.

En route to Flores, stop for a guided tour of the ancient city of Tikal. Arrive in Flores, the capital of the department of Petén, a small island located on the second largest lake of Guatemala, Lake Petén Itzá.

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Day 9: Flores/Rio Dulce

Opt to visit the coastal town of Livingston by boat, or go for a swim in a natural hot waterfall.
A travel day from Flores to Rio Dulce which is located in the department of Izabal, home of the largest lake in Guatemala, Lake Izabal was one of the most important water ways of the Spanish crown during colonial times.

We take the road past areas of dense jungle and arrive at Río Dulce, a small town on Lake Izabal and a port stop for boaters around the globe, on their way to/from Livingston and the Caribbean coast.

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Day 10: Rio Dulce

Opt to visit the coastal town of Livingston by boat, or go for a swim in a natural hot waterfall.
Opt to visit the coastal town of Livingston by boat, go for a swim in a natural hot waterfall, take a sunrise kayak to visit groups of noisy howler monkeys, or take a horseback ride through the rubber plantations combined with a visit to the Shaman Tower.

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Day 11: Rio Dulce/Antigua Guatemala

Enjoy an orientation walk of Antigua's cobblestone streets, then opt to take a salsa lesson and practice new moves out at night.
Today is a travel day from Rio Dulce to Antigua, followed by an orientation walk once you arrive. Plan your activities for the next day and enjoy some of the nightlife this beautiful colonial city has to offer.

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Day 12: Antigua Guatemala

Enjoy a free day in Antigua. Opt to relax with a massage, climb a volcano, soak up the culture in one of the city's many cafés, or explore the nearby hills and towns by bike.
Relax with a massage, climb a volcano, soak up the culture of this colonial town's many museums and cafes, attend a chocolate workshop, visit one of the local coffee or macadamia nut plantations, or explore the nearby hills and towns by bike.

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Day 13: Antigua Guatemala/Panajachel

Travel to beautiful Lake Atitlán and enjoy the views.
Travel through the hills and fertile fields of the Guatemalan highlands to the shores of Lake Atitlán, one of the most beautiful spots in Guatemala. Twelve native villages, blue/grey mountains and three volcanoes line the shores of this lake resulting in a wonderful combination of unusual natural beauty and traditional culture.

The area is also ideal for outdoor pursuits like swimming, fishing, wind surfing, hiking, bird watching, kayaking, and horseback riding.

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Day 14: Panajachel/San Juan La Laguna

Embark on a boat ride across the lake before participating in a G Adventures-supported homestay with a local family. This area is known for stunning scenery and great shopping for Mayan handicrafts. Opt to bargain for colourful textiles and paintings at the lake's markets.

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Day 15: San Juan La Laguna/Antigua Guatemala

Return to Antigua, and enjoy a Big Night Out with the group.
We return to Antigua to spend more time to explore the city, shop, and check out optional activities in the area.

Optional activities include visiting a macadamia nut farm, checking out a coffee plantation, biking around Antigua's surrounding hills or taking a salsa lesson.

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Day 16: Antigua Guatemala

Enjoy free time to relax with a massage, explore the nearby hills by bicycle, or visit a local macadamia nut farm.

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Day 17: Antigua Guatemala/Copán

Cross the border to Honduras. Opt to soak in local hot springs in the jungle.
The colonial highland town of Copán Ruinas is a charming and relaxing place, set along a river in the coffee growing region close to the Guatemalan border.

The Mayan ruins of Copán are fascinating, beautiful and unique among Mayan cities. Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1980, Copán contains some of the most important Mayan ruins found to date, and many unusual artistic features, including some of the most detailed carving in the Mayan world.


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Day 18: Copán

Free time in Copán. Opt to visit the ruins of Copán or explore the hills on horseback.
Free time in Copan. Opt to visit the impressive Copan ruins and check out some lesser known Mayan sites along the way. Knowledgable local guides can interpret the many Mayan carvings left here over 1,000 years ago. You can also choose to explore the nearby hills and small villages on horseback or journey through the countryside to some hidden jungle hot springs for a relaxing soak.

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Day 19: Copán/Suchitoto

Cross the border into El Salvador and stay in the colonial town of Suchitoto. Don't forget to try the delicious pupusas, a local Salvadorian specialty.

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Day 20: Suchitoto

Enjoy a free day in Suchitoto.

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Day 21: Suchitoto/Playa El Tunco

Enjoy a free morning in Suchitoto before heading to the coast. The sunsets in this surfing town are stunning. Grab a cold drink and enjoy!

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Day 22: Playa El Tunco

Enjoy a free day in this laidback beach town to take a surf lesson, eat fresh ceviche at the fish market in nearby La Libertad, visit the Tamanique waterfalls, or chill out with a beer in hand.

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Day 23: Playa El Tunco

Enjoy a free day in this laidback beach town to take a surf lesson, eat fresh ceviche at the fish market in nearby La Libertad, visit the Tamanique waterfalls, or chill out with a beer in hand.

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Day 24: Playa El Tunco/Santa Teresa

Hop on a flight to Costa Rica, and travel to the coastal town of Santa Teresa. Kick back and enjoy this beach paradise.
Journey to Costa Rica and visit the small towns of Playa Santa Teresa and Malpais, which are frequented by surfers. Opt to hit the waves, or visit Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve – take a hike to explore the area or check out the snorkelling at Secret Beach.

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Day 25: Santa Teresa

Try out surfing, visit Cabo Blanco NP, or just chill out on the beach. Don't miss the night life.
Check out Cabo Blanco NP to spot some wildlife, hike to the nearby waterfall for a dip or a jump in the local swimming hole or simply lounge on the beach.

Take a day trip to the beautiful Isla Tortuga, where you can snorkel along a volcanic rock reef or check out the nearby surf havens of Mal Pais and Santa Teresa. Adrenaline junkies can take their pick of activities as well - surfing, ziplining, ATV, boogie boarding, horseback riding or scuba diving are all options. On the other hand, if relaxation is what you seek, opt for a yoga class or take a leisurely hike to search for orchids.

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Day 26: Santa Teresa

Try out surfing, visit Cabo Blanco NP, or just chill out on the beach. Don't miss the night life.
Check out Cabo Blanco NP to spot some wildlife, hike to the nearby waterfall for a dip or a jump in the local swimming hole or simply lounge on the beach.

Take a day trip to the beautiful Isla Tortuga, where you can snorkel along a volcanic rock reef or check out the nearby surf havens of Mal Pais and Santa Teresa. Adrenaline junkies can take their pick of activities as well - surfing, ziplining, ATV, boogie boarding, horseback riding or scuba diving are all options. On the other hand, if relaxation is what you seek, opt for a yoga class or take a leisurely hike to search for orchids.

27

Day 27: Santa Teresa/Monteverde

Travel through stunning Costa Rican scenery, finishing up in the cloud forest air of Monteverde.
At 1,400 meters above sea level, Monteverde is literally in the clouds. The Monteverde and Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserves are home to diverse and unique flora and fauna. Sloths, monkeys, kinkajous, tapirs and large cats inhabit the area. There are more species of orchids here than anywhere else in the world.

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Day 28: Monteverde

Free day in Monteverde. Opt to visit a cloud forest reserve, fly through the jungle canopy via zipline, or tour a coffee plantation. Enjoy dinner at a G Adventures-supported coffee cooperative which funds local educational programs.
The day is free to choose from many optional activities. Fly hundreds of meters above the trees on a zip-lining tour, hike through one of the cloud forest reserves, ride a horse in the mountains, visit a coffee/sugar cane farm, go bungee jumping, drive an ATV on trails in the hills, tour the cheese factory or check out the orchid garden, serpentarium, or frog pond in town.

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Day 29: Monteverde/La Fortuna

Transfer to La Fortuna along bumpy roads, then break up the journey with a peaceful boat ride on Lake Arenal before a short ride to the town.
The trip from Monteverde to La Fortuna takes us down from the cloud forest and across Costa Rica's largest lake The town of La Fortuna lies at the base of the Arenal Volcano, which dominates the landscape rising to 1670 meters high. The town has become famous as the adventure sports capital of Costa Rica.

Choose your adventure! Canyoneering, white water rafting, hiking, caving, rafting, horseback riding, paddlebording, kayaking, visiting a wildlife refuge, and even more activities are all possible options for you to choose from while we're here.

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Day 30: La Fortuna

Free time to enjoy the La Fortuna and Arenal area.
Choose your adventure! Canyoneering, hiking, caving, rafting, horseback riding, paddleboarding, kayaking, visiting a wildlife refuge, and even more activities are all possible options for you to choose from while we're here.

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Day 31: La Fortuna/San José

Journey through the mountains to the capital for a final night out.
Return to San José for our final night out.

San José has beautiful parks, museums and theatres. Enjoy the view of the surrounding lush mountains from the downtown streets.

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Day 32: San José

Depart at any time.

Inclusions:
    Activities
    • G Adventures for Good: San Antonio Women's Pottery Cooperative and Local Lunch, San Ignacio G Adventures for Good: Posadas Mayas Homestay, San Juan La Laguna G Adventures for Good: Life Monteverde Visit, Monteverde Big Night Out: Antigua Guatemala
    • Guided tour of Tikal
    • Orientation walk in Antigua
    • Beach time in Caye Caulker, El Tunco and Santa Teresa
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    Accommodation
    • Simple hotels/hostels (30 nts, most multi-share), homestay (1 nt)
    • 2 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 3 dinners
    Transport
    • Local bus, ferry, boat, private vehicle, taxi, walking
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides
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Tour Highlights:
  • Relax on white-sand beaches
  • Explore the Mayan ruins of Copán and Tikal
  • Bargain at the local markets of colourful colonial Antigua
  • Meet some local friends at a G Adventures for Good homestay in Guatemala and a community guesthouse in Nicaragua
  • Visit seven countries in a month.