Best of Central America Overview

Have the ultimate Central American adventure on this classic tour from Mexico to Panama. Enjoy beaches, volcanoes, ancient ruins and have a whole stack of fun.

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There is a later version of this trip also available for travel from Jan 1, 2015 to Dec 31, 2015. View later Best of Central America.

Trip Map


Trip Validity

  • 2011-01-01 - 2014-12-31

Explore Central American highlights between Mexico and Panama

Travel into the heart of some of the most electric countries in Central America. Spot freshwater sharks on Lake Nicaragua, see flowing lava light up the night sky in La Fortuna, explore the lush coastline of Honduras and Belize and experience life in a Guatemalan community. This remarkable adventure tour begins on the magic shores of Mexico, ends on the rumba-beat streets of Panama and is quite simply, unforgettable.

  • 'Hang ten' in the Santa Catalina surf
  • Be welcomed by a local community in San Jorge
  • Discover the history of ancient Tikal pyramids
  • Eat some tasty tamales on a visit to Antigua
  • Embark on an epic Central America tour
  • Explore an exciting range of Panama City attractions
  • Marvel at La Fortuna's mighty Arenal Volcano
  • See locals chatting through open living rooms in Granada

What's included in this trip

  • Start:

    Playa del Carmen, Mexico
  • Finish:

    Panama City, Panama
  • Group size:

    Min 1 , Max 16
  • Ages:

    Min 15
  • Meals:

    1 breakfast, 1 dinner
  • Accommodation:

    Homestay (1 nt), Hotel (42 nts)
  • Transport:

    Boat, Bus, Taxi
  • Included activities:

    Orientation walk

  • Carbon emissions offset:

    366kg pp per trip
Contact us

About Belize , Costa Rica , Guatemala , Honduras , Mexico , Nicaragua , Panama

Best of Central America Summary

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Day 1 Playa del Carmen

Playa del Carmen is a slice of beach paradise on the Caribbean coast, where white sands, water sports and margaritas abound.

Days 2-3 Tulum

Sitting on a cliff with views of an azure ocean, Tulum not only has spectacular Maya ruins to discover but some of Mexico's finest beaches to frolic on.

Days 4-5 Caye Caulker

A small island with no cars, white-sand beaches and crystal-clear waters, Caye Caulker is an idyllic place to while away some time and soak up the very relaxed vibe.

Days 6-7 San Ignacio

A friendly place with a multicultural feel, San Ignacio is a wonderful base to explore the gorgeous countryside that surrounds the town.

Days 8-9 Flores/Tikal

Located on an island in Lake Peten Itza, Flores is a wonderful place to explore with its red roofs, historical buildings and cobblestone streets. Once a powerful Mayan city, Tikal was abandoned in the 10th century and sank into the surrounding jungle. It's now alive with jungle wildlife and awe-inspired visitors.

Days 10-11 Rio Dulce

Meaning 'sweet river' in Spanish, Rio Dulce is a town (also known as Fronteras) and a river with clean waters, a unique lifestyle and wonderful wildlife.

Day 12 Antigua

Declared a World Heritage site due to its well-preserved buildings, Antigua is a bewitching city sheltered between three volcanoes with wonderful food and atmospheric streets.

Day 13 San Jorge La Laguna

San Jorge La Laguna is a small, picturesque village situated in a valley near Lake Atitlan, where welcoming locals live traditional lives. Affectionately known as 'Chichi', Chichicastenango is a vibrant and colorful town famous for its wonderful market held on Thursdays and Sundays.

Day 14 Panajachel/Chichicastenango

Panajachel, located on beautiful Lake Atitlan with distant volcanoes looming in the background, has a thriving market, good eateries and many water-based activities to enjoy. Go for a swim, wind surf, hike, kayak, go horse riding, or for the really adventurous, paragliding. The surrounding area is dotted with villages which can be reached on foot or by boat. Watch women weaving at Santa Catarina Palopo or explore the colorful markets of Santiago Atitlan, In each village the local Indian life has changed little over the last few hundred years. Each village has its own typical dress and make all the textiles themselves in designs passed down through generations.

Days 15-16 Antigua

Feel as if time has stood still among the narrow, cobbled streets, grand churches, Spanish colonial architecture and fascinating ruins of captivating Antigua.

Days 17-18 Copan

The southernmost of the great Mayan sites for which Central America is famed, the ancient ruins of Copan feature huge carved faces staring out from ancient walls.

Days 19-21 Roatan Island

Roatan Island is one of the famous Bay Islands - an archipelago of coral islands set in the Caribbean known for their laidback atmosphere and amazing underwater treasures.

Day 22 Comayagua

Picturesque colonial beauty meets modern life in Comayagua. This historic political centre has a wealth of Spanish Colonial architecture, including some of Central America's most impressive churches.

Days 23-24 Granada

Oozing with colonial charm, Granada is the oldest city of the 'New World' - it was founded on the shores of Lake Nicaragua in 1524.

Days 25-26 Ometepe Island

Beautifully located within Lake Nicaragua, Ometepe Island is formed by two volcanoes which rise from the lake. Its hourglass shape is home to great beaches, fascinating petroglyphs and diverse wildlife.

Days 27-28 Monteverde

Monteverde's Cloud Forest Reserve is a true nature lover's paradise. Lush, green and teeming with colorful butterflies, unique plants and exotic creatures.

Days 29-30 La Fortuna/Arenal Volcano

Sitting in the shadow of Costa Rica's majestic Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna offers steaming hot springs and endless outdoor activities.

Days 31-32 San Jose

With over half the country's population living within its parameters, San Jose is a bustling city with lively markets, intriguing museums and a dynamic atmosphere.

Days 33-35 Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

A small town on the beautiful Caribbean coast, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca is located near Cahuita National Park - home to a weird and wonderful array of wildlife.

Days 36-38 Isla Bastimentos

Just one of the beautiful islands which make up the Carribean haven of Bocas del Toro, Isla Bastimentos is gifted with a laidback atmosphere, coral reefs and stunning beaches.

Days 39-40 Boquete

Boquete's fresh air and picturesque mountain setting makes it one of Panama's top destinations for nature and outdoor lovers.

Days 41-42 Santa Catalina

The remote fishing village of Santa Catalina is an unspoilt paradise - surf, fish, snorkel or scuba dive to make the most of this idyllic location.

Days 43-44 Panama City

From the massive locks of the Panama Canal to the historical Casco Viejo district, Panama City offers a wealth of eclectic sights to explore.
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