Explore Central America on a trip through Mexico, Belize and Guatemala.

Prepare for a unique Central American adventure from Mexico to Guatemala that's packed full of cosmopolitan cities, breathtaking Mayan ruins, idyllic beaches and incredible natural beauty. Journey from the madness of Mexico City, through the Yucatan Peninsula and to the colour of colonial Antigua. Discover the spicy flavours of Oaxaca, admire the stunning Palenque ruins, swim in the turquoise waters off the coast of Belize in Caye Caulker and arrive at volcano-rimmed Antigua. Join us as we discover places of astounding beauty, visit vibrant and colourful cities, explore ancient ruins and uncover the hidden gems of Central America along the way.

Start
Mexico City, Mexico
Finish
Antigua, Guatemala
Countries
Belize,
Guatemala,
Mexico
Themes
Explorer
Code
QVRYC
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 16
Carbon offset
384kg pp per trip


Highlights

  • Live it up in Mexico City
  • Try chocolate-coated grasshoppers in Oaxaca
  • Soak up the bohemian atmosphere of San Cristobal
  • Come face-to-face with a rain god at Uxmal
  • Drink margaritas by the Caribbean
  • Swim in the turquoise waters off Caye Caulker
  • Experience city life in colonial Antigua
  • Shop for bargains in the Chichicastenango Market

Itinerary

The fastest growing urban centres in the world, Mexico City presents an intoxicating mix of mariachi music, lively night scenes, fascinating museums and intriguing markets. Get to know what makes this buzzing metropolis tick on an orientation walk, then head out to the sprawling Aztec ruins of Teotihuacan.
Jump aboard one of Mexico's colourful buses bound for Puebla. Spend some time exploring the city's handicraft staffs, tuck into mole poblano, the region's specialty, or set out for an optional hike in the city's volcanic hinterlands.
Well-known for its colourful art and handicrafts scene, Oaxaca is a delight to get to know. Stock up on some unique souvenirs, zip out to the Zapotec ruins of Monte Alban, sink the teeth into some peculiar local delicacies or simply pick a plaza bench to sit on and watch the local scene unfold.
Venture into the cool climes of San Cristobal de las Casas, a charming colonial-era town oft regarded as one of the country's gems. Boasting spectacular natural surrounds, this is the perfect place to get active; either by mountain biking out to some of the traditional villages, saddling up for a ride in the mountains or jumping on a day tour out to the Sumidero Canyon.
One of the most impressive Mayan sites in Mexico, if not all Central America, the temples of Palenque are a superb relic of Mayan culture and architectural enterprise. Climb the temples for breathtaking views across the Chiapas Jungle, watch for monkeys swinging through the canopy and take a cooling dip in the nearby Agua Azul and Misol-Ha waterfalls.
Journey on to the colonial city of Merida for some time spent soaking up the vibe of this charming colonial-era Spanish town. Chill out in the Plaza Grande, try some local delicacies like cochinita pibil (a slow-roasted pork dish) or join an optional tour out to the incredible Uxmal ruins.
Stop by the amazing ruins of Chichen Itza en route to the Caribbean beachside haven of Playa Del Carmen. There's no shortage of activities on offer here; strap on a mask and snorkel and get exploring the underwater world of the nearby reefs and islands, travel out to Cenote Ikil or join the heaving local nightlife.
White powdery beaches lapped by warm blue waters and overlooked by crumbling Mayan ruins - welcome to Tulum. Choose to set out for some snorkelling in the Cenotes offshore or simply sit back beachside and take in the view, margarita in hand.
Cross the border into Belize and cruise out to Caye Caulker - an idyllic tropical island getaway where exceptional scuba-diving outings or simply swinging the day away in a hammock are equally appealing options. Alternatively, head out on a manatee spotting excursion to learn about these curious creatures that call the lagoons of Caulker home.
Trade the blues of the Caribbean for the lush verdancy of San Ignacio in the Belize hinterlands. Perhaps venture out to the Mayan ruins of Xunantunich, embark on an tubing adventure through the jungle or a caving adventure underground and then finish up the day sharing barbecued street-side snacks with the town's friendly locals.
Leave Belize behind and travel by local bus to the laidback Guatemalan island town of Flores. While the nearby jungle-shrouded temples of Tikal are the town's true claim to fame, Flores' winding cobbled streets and small-town vibe make it a very pleasant place to explore by foot.
Continue on through dense jungle to Rio Dulce, by the banks of Lake Izabal. In spare time perhaps set out upriver to the coastal enclave of Livingstone for a final taste of Creole Caribbean culture or head out for a hike through Chocon-Machacas Natural Reserve.
Explore the cobblestone charms and quaint colonial architecture of Antigua, one of Central America's most captivating and cultivated cities.
Visit the picturesque mountain town of Chichicastenango and take a wander through its bustling market. Then continue on to San Jorge La Laguna and get an insight into local life on an overnight family homestay.
Panajachel, a lovely little town on the banks of Lake Atitlan, serves as the main base for exploring the various traditional villages dotted around the lake. With a serene ambience and superb mountain panoramas, it's the perfect place to sit back with a good book or embark on any number of optional activities.
Return to the colourful handicraft stalls and leafy plazas of Antigua, Guatemala's atmospheric one-time capital. With an entire day here to spend however you see fit, perhaps book on an optional excursion to Pacaya Volcano or sign up for a salsa lesson, then gather the group for a final dinner and relive the highlights of this memorable adventure through the Mayan heartlands.
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
1 breakfast1 dinner
Transport
Bus, Ferry, Metro, Overnight bus
Accommodation
Camping (with facilities) (1 night), Homestay (1 night), Hotel (26 nights), Overnight bus (2 nights)

Dates

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Important notes

A Single Supplement is available on this trip, except on the nights when we travel by overnight bus.

Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

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