Map of Amazing Central America including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua

Adventure from volcanic highland to island paradise

Get ready for a 29-day experience through Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama, powered by Intrepid. From oceans teeming with marine life to tropical forests alive with jungle melodies, this pocket of Central America is truly a natural paradise. Whether you're shopping in colonial Antigua, exploring the intricately carved structures at Copan or taking a night hike up an active volcano at La Fortuna, this trip gives you real insight into the heart and soul of Central America.


Start
Antigua, Guatemala
Finish
Panama City, Panama
Destinations
Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama
Style
Basix
Theme
Explorer
Code
QVRPC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 16

Why you'll love this trip

  • The stars of this trip are the dramatic and varied landscapes of lush Central America. If you’re thinking active volcanoes, idyllic beaches and emerald jungles – this trip has got you covered.

  • Nicaragua is often neglected by travellers in favour of its neighbours but their loss is your gain as you’ll have incredible Ometepe Island, which was formed by massive volcanoes, pretty much all to yourself.

  • Hike, cycle or zip-line through the steamy cloud forests of Monteverde – there’s so many ways to experience the lush canopies and see unique Central American wildlife.

  • Try out your Nicaragua sign language skills when you order breakfast at an atmospheric cafe housed in a historic building that is managed and staffed by members of the local deaf community.

  • Put your chef hat on and help prepare a traditional Caribbean dinner with a local family in their home in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

  • Clear sea perfect for swimming, shacks serving cold cerveza and sandy shores covered in starfish are waiting in the Bocas del Toro, where you spend three nights on Isla Colon.

  • Get to know Panama City during a guided stroll along the Cinta Costera right to the city’s salty belly – the Mercado de Mariscos (seafood market).

Is this trip right for you?

  • Central America is a big place. In order to see as much as we can, this trip includes some long days spent travelling. Please read the itinerary carefully for travel time estimates.

  • You’ll be crossing the borders between seven countries on this trip and while the process is usually straightforward, you may need to be patient. Make sure you’ve got your best car game ready in case of any delays!

  • Is it hot in here? The weather in tropical Central America can be sticky. Pack light, comfortable clothes and carry plenty of water.

  • Some of the optional activities on this adventure require a moderate level of fitness, especially the volcano hikes. If you want to take it easy, there are plenty of relaxing things you can do instead. 

  • There will be times when you have to walk with your luggage, and for this reason, we recommend packing light and using a backpack or something easy to carry.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 Jan 2023 to 31 Dec 2023.
View the 2020 itinerary
Welcome to Antigua, Guatemala. With crumbling churches, vibrant markets and bohemian cafes set against the backdrop of monumental volcanoes, Antigua is the perfect place to begin your Central American adventure. Speaking of adventure, yours officially kicks off with a welcome meeting at 6 pm today at the hotel. If you decide to arrive in the city a little early (smart move!), there's plenty to do. Maybe satisfy your cravings and learn the art of old-world chocolate production at the ChocoMuseo, or sit by the fountain and people watch in Central Park. After the welcome meeting, the night is yours, so perhaps head out with some of your fellow travellers for a tamale: a classic staple of Mesoamerica that sees dough, meat and sauces steamed and served in a corn husk.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Antigua - Chocolate-making workshop at ChocoMuseo - GTQ225
  • Antigua - Salsa-dance Lesson (per hour) - GTQ100
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. If you are going to be late please let your travel agent or hotel reception know. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place.

Please note that this trip can be partnered with other adventures into a ‘combo’, which means that some of your fellow travellers may have begun their journey before today, and some may carry on to further destinations at the end of this tour. If you’d like to spend more time in Central America, have a look at the combos that include this trip’s itinerary: Central American Adventure (QVRXC) or Best of Central America (QVRQC)
Rise and shine for a day of travel, leaving at around 4 am to beat the rush-hour traffic around Antigua. During the drive, your group leader will run an informal Spanish lesson, providing you with some useful phrases to break the ice with the locals. Head into Honduras through the wild countryside of eastern Guatemala, arriving in the charming town of Copan in the early afternoon. While most people use Copan as a base to explore the nearby ruins, there are plenty of other points of interest, both along the cobblestone streets and set into the lush surrounds. Maybe get started in the Central Plaza and follow your nose to a cafe, or perhaps head to the nearby natural hot springs. This optional tour gives you hours of soak time in mud, steaming natural baths and refreshing pools in the lush jungle, with an included dinner.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Copan - Natural Hot Springs & Dinner - USD50
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s driving time is approximately 8 hours so pack a book or your favourite tunes and have some snacks ready to make the journey more comfortable.
This morning, join your leader and explore the World Heritage-listed ruins of Copan, the remnants of the southernmost of the great Maya sites for which Central America is famous. It's unique because of the numerous elaborate stelae – carved columns – still intact on site, and there are also temples, excavated vaults and walls inscribed with ancient faces. You’ll wave goodbye to Copan early in the afternoon and head across the border to El Salvador by private vehicle. Depending on traffic and conditions, you’ll reach the colonial town of Suchitoto in the evening. Then get your chef’s hat on with a pupusa making cooking class in a private home. Pupusa, thick cornmeal flatbreads, are a classic Salvadorian recipe from the Pipil culture and are stuffed with some delicious ingredients, like cheese or chicharron (fried pork).
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • San Miguel - Salvadoran Pupusa cooking demonstration
  • Copan Ruins - Visit
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Special Information
Today’s travel time is approximately 7 hours.
Begin the day with a leader led orientation walk of Suchitoto – widely considered the cultural capital of El Salvador – and admire the elaborate building facades as you get your bearings. Birders will want to crane their necks towards the sky as Suchitoto lies on a bird migration path. The rest of the day is all yours to relax or join the optional activities on offer. Suchitoto overlooks the Embalse Cerron Grande. Also known as Lago Suchitlan, this freshwater lake is a haven for migrating birds, particularly falcons and hawks. Maybe hustle a crew of four or more together and take a boat trip to Bird Island, or perhaps grab a historically-minded quartet for a guided walk through Cinquera Forest, where guerrilla fighters used the forest as cover during the civil war.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Suchitoto - Leader led orientation walk
Optional Activities
  • Suchitoto - Birdwatching Walk (requires a minimum of 3 travellers to operate) - USD25
  • Suchitoto - Boat trip to Bird Island in Lake Suchitlan (it requires a minimum of 3 travellers to operate) - USD25
  • Suchitoto - Town tour (it requires a minimum of 3 travellers to operate) - USD30
  • Suchitoto - War historic walk at Cinquera Forest (requires a minimum of 3 travellers to operate) - USD50
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today you’ll drive to coastal El Cuco where you’ll find some great dark-sand beaches close to town, including the beautiful Playa El Esteron and Playa Las Flores – one of the best surf spots in the country. Maybe head to a beach for a swim or relax under the palms with a beer while you wait for sunset. As night falls, you could enjoy a seafood dinner along the water – the local crab are some of the tastiest in the country.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s travel time is approximately 5 hours.
Today you're free as a bird to explore the beautiful coast around El Cuco at your own pace. Surf culture is big on the pacific coast of El Salvador so you might like to make like the locals and hit the waves with a surf lesson. Alternately, simply sit back and relax in a hammock on the beach and soak up the sunshine with a drink in hand. Life’s good.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • El Cuco - surf lesson - USD20
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Rise early for a full day of travel by private vehicle where you’ll cross the border at El Amatillo then drive to Honduras where you’ll stop for lunch. After there, there’s another border crossing at Guasaule before you reach Leon. Upon arrival, join your leader on an orientation walk in this charming city. Though it's the second largest in the country, Leon is relatively free of tourists, making strolling the mural-lined streets a real pleasure. Tonight you may like to head out to dinner with your group.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Leon - Leader led orientation walk
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
The Nicaraguan border crossing can be confusing and disorderly so please pay close attention to your leader instructions. At this border crossing you will need to pay USD 12 fee, payable in cash.

Today’s travel time is approximately 6.5 hours.
You’ll have time to make the most of Leon in the morning, perhaps with a visit to the street food area behind the Lady of Grace Cathedral. Try a 'Nica taco' made with maize, rolled and then deep fried, and served with shredded cabbage and smothered in cream. Otherwise a thrilling volcano sand boarding adventure could be on the cards! In the afternoon, you’ll drive to the oldest city in the 'New World', Granada. Featuring Moorish and Andalusian architecture and oozing colonial charm, Granada is set on the banks of Lake Nicaragua and is surrounded by active volcanoes. You’ll be travelling by taxi from the hotel to the bus station, boarding a local bus bound for Managua that will depart when it's full, and then taking the next public bus to Granada followed by a taxi ride to the hotel. Upon arrival, your leader will take you through the leafy Parque Central and 'La Calzada' – a lively pedestrian street with plenty of bars and restaurants to choose from.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Leon - Volcano Sand Boarding - USD45
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s travel time is approximately 6 hours.
Today is all yours, so explore the city at your own pace. You may want to take a more comprehensive self-guided tour of the city, bargain hard in the markets or wander the cobblestone streets snapping photos of the colourful buildings. Hundreds of evergreen islets dot the waters of vast Lake Nicaragua, and you can spend a few hours exploring them by boat. Or perhaps hire a kayak and find your own way around, stopping to wave at fisherman who live in wooden huts on the islets or the monkeys who live in the trees the huts are built from. Just remember not to take a dip, as freshwater sharks live in the water! Alternatively, you could take a day trip out to Mombacho or Masaya Volcano National Park.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Granada - Laguna Apoyo kayaking tour - USD30
  • Granada - Mombacho Volcano hike - USD30
  • Granada - Monkey Island boat tour - NIO455
  • Granada - Masaya Volcano at night (Viewpoint for the Lava Lake at Santiago Crater) - NIO1600
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
This morning we’ll enjoy a breakfast together at Cafe de las Sonrisas, a café run entirely by deaf people. The café's owner is aiming to bridge the gap and inspire other business owners to employ local people living with disabilities. Then maybe hit the Convento y Museo San Francisco and view the collection of indigenous stone statues before you catch a local bus to Rivas and transfer to the port of San Jorge to catch the ferry across the Lake Nicaragua to Ometepe Island. Hourglass-shaped Ometepe is formed by two volcanoes rising out of Lake Nicaragua, one active and one extinct. The island is home to fruit plantations, deep jungle and exotic wildlife such as howler monkeys, caiman and parrots. Spend the evening on the island, and maybe head out for a beer at one of the waterfront bars with your group.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Granada - Breakfast at El Cafe de las Sonrisas
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s travel time is approximately 3 hours.
Today is yours to spend however you wish on Ometepe. You can hike both Concepcion or Maderas Volcano, however, at 1700 and 1340 metres above sea level, the treks are no walk in the park. If you are going to tackle them, ask your leader for a recommendation for a local guide. You should also be aware that even for the very fit, both volcanoes will likely take all day (8–10 hours) to summit and then descend. Instead, you might prefer to splash around in the clear waters of the natural springs, soak up the sun on the beach or check out the ancient petroglyphs (rock carvings) scattered about the island. The island’s restaurants can be mixed when it comes to quality so ask your leader which places to avoid and which are the best to eat at. Stick to local fare and you'll have more luck – perhaps try indio viejo: a stew of corn, beef, onion, tomatoes and capsicum.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Ometepe - Concepcion Volcano hike - USD45
  • Ometepe - Maderas Volcano hike - USD45
  • Ometepe - Ojo de Agua natural spring (entrance fee) - USD25
  • Ometepe - Petroglyphs - USD25
  • Ometepe - Charco Verde tour (includes lunch, Ojo de Agua and Mirador lookout) - USD25
  • Ometepe - Charco Verde Reserve (entrance fee) - USD3
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today is another early start for a full day of travel which begins with a 7am ferry to the mainland and a transfer by road to Penas Blancas before crossing the border into Costa Rica. Once in Costa Rica, you’ll travel in a private vehicle to Monteverde where you can begin exploring straight away on a walking tour with your leader. Monteverde was founded as an agricultural community in 1951 by a group of North American Quakers. These environmentally-aware settlers also established a small wildlife sanctuary, which has since grown into the internationally-renowned Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Preserve. Cloud forests are like rainforests, but instead draw their water from a semi-permanent cloud covering the region. This is truly a nature lover's paradise. More than 2000 plant species, 320 bird species and 100 mammal species call Monteverde home. Be sure to keep an eye out for the resplendent quetzal, one of the world’s most elusive birds.
Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Monteverde - Leader-led orientation walk
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
A USD 3 fee is required when exiting Nicaragua. Reaching the Costa Rican border also requires a 1-kilometre walk, during which you must carry your luggage. Proof of onward travel is normally required to enter Costa Rica, so if you're flying out of San Jose, bring a printed copy of your flight details in case the border officials ask to see them.

Today’s travel time is approximately 8 hours.
Enjoy a free day to discover this lush reserve at your own pace. Perhaps take a hike through the cloud forest, check out the area by mountain bike or fly over the thick canopy on a zip line tour. Another way to see the forest from above is to take a Sky Walk tour along a series of suspension bridges. You can explore the park on your own or arrange for a local guide to accompany you. Guided tours are particularly helpful for those interested in learning more about the local flora and fauna, as well as the different roles wildlife play in Mesoamerican mythology. For guaranteed sightings of exotic insects and snakes, head to the Butterfly Garden or the Serpentarium.
Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Monteverde - Cloud Forest leader-led Nature Hike - USD25
  • Monteverde - Suspension bridges tour - USD50
  • Monteverde - Canopy Zip Lining (Entrance, Equipment & Transport) - USD50
  • Monteverde - Coffee & Chocolate tour - USD40
  • Monteverde - Night walk through Cloud Forest - USD35
  • Monteverde - Cloud Forest Train - USD50
  • Monteverde - Serpentarium - USD16
  • Monteverde - Butterfly Garden and Insects Farm (entrance fee) - USD18
  • Monteverde - Frog pond - USD15
  • Monteverde - Orchid gardens - USD13
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Spend a final morning in the thickets of the Monteverde jungle, perhaps taking one last walk to search for wildlife, then depart in the early afternoon for La Fortuna. You’ll drive to the shores of Lake Arenal where you’ll take a ferry across the lake to the little town of La Fortuna. On a clear day you'll have fantastic views of the surrounding area. Watching the massive Arenal Volcano loom larger and larger as you approach is a spectacular sight. Once you reach La Fortuna take another vehicle to the hotel, then freshen up and head out on a leader-led orientation walk. La Fortuna is a favourite among travel writers for a reason – words like picturesque and breathtaking spring to mind when trying to describe this town in the shadow of the volcano.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • La Fortuna - Leader led orientation walk
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s travel time is approximately 3 hours.
Why not start today with a smoothie and plan how you want to explore? Perhaps take a guided nature hike through the lush forest surrounding Arenal Volcano, keeping an eye out for rare plants and animals, or see the forest from a series of hanging bridges which offer a great vantage point for spotting wildlife like sloths and rainbow-coloured birds. The volcano’s inner workings also mean that the area is home to several thermal hot springs, an ideal way to relax in the middle of nature. Or instead, check out the 70-metre-high La Fortuna waterfall set in the middle of the rainforest or hit the lake on a stand-up paddleboard. Otherwise, a boat safari down the Celeste River offers the opportunity to see lizards, crocodiles and tropical birds in their natural habitat.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • La Fortuna - Ecotermales Hot Springs (entrance fee) - USD44
  • La Fortuna - Arenal hanging bridges - USD29
  • La Fortuna - La Fortuna Waterfall (Entrance only) - USD18
  • La Fortuna - Arenal Volcano Hike - USD60
  • La Fortuna- Caño Negro boat tour - USD75
  • La Fortuna - Stand up paddle board - USD75
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Watch the volcano fade into the distance on a local bus ride to Costa Rica's capital, San Jose. On arrival, head out on an orientation walk with your leader to see the main highlights. Once you’ve got your bearings, you may like to visit the Gold Museum, which has an amazing collection of pre-Spanish gold art. If you're in the mood for a bit of shopping, head to the outdoor market in the Plaza de la Cultura or the city's Central Market, where you can buy anything from handicrafts to seafood.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • San Jose - Leader-led orientation walk
Optional Activities
  • San Jose - The Art of Craft Beer in San Jose - Urban Adventures - USD68
  • San Jose - San Jose By Night: Food and Culture - Urban Adventures - USD74
  • San Jose - National Museum (entrance fee) - USD11
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s travel time is approximately 5 hours.
Enjoy a free day exploring the city before a meeting at 6 pm to welcome any new travellers joining you on the next stage of your adventure. A good place to start your exploration is the main plaza. Artisan booths are common here, so you never know when an art fair will pop up. The Gold Museum has an amazing collection of indigenous gold art. If you're in the mood for a bit of shopping, head to the outdoor market in the Plaza de la Cultura or the city's Central Market, where you can buy anything from handicrafts to seafood.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • San Jose - Pre-Colombian Gold Museum (entrance fee) - USD16
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
As this is a combination trip, the travellers in your group and your group leader are likely to change today.

There will be a welcome meeting tonight to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and meet travellers joining you. It’s important that you attend the meeting as your new leader will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place.
Today we take a local bus to Puerto Viejo. On arrival, get to know this laid-back jungle town during an orientation walk with your local leader, then enjoy the rest of the day explore at your leisure. A small and coastal city, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca has a lively main street featuring dancehalls, reggaeton bars and modern restaurants. If you’re looking for a little relaxation, you'll also find great surf beaches and rainforest fruit farms.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Puerto Viejo - Leader-led orientation walk
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s travel time: 5 hours
Today is free for you to ease into the vibes of the Caribbean coast. You might take your time to explore Cahuita National Park, which is easily accessible from Puerto Viejo and home to sloths, monkeys, raccoons, snakes and a great variety of birds. If the waves are calling but your footing isn’t so sure, surf lessons are also on offer in town. Of course, you could also simply find a cool spot and relax with a beer in hand. To top today off we'll prepare a traditional Caribbean dinner with a local family in their home. Enjoy a mixture of fruits, seafood, tubers and vegetables combined with coconut flavours, ginger, allspice, cinnamon, curry Panamian pepper and thyme.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Puerto Viejo - Hands-on dinner in local home
Optional Activities
  • Puerto Viejo de Talamanca - Cahuita National Park - USD5
  • Puerto Viejo de Talamanca - Surf lesson (1 hour) - USD57
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Today we take a local bus to the border, then walk across an old railway bridge into Panama. Continue by taxi or collective minivan to Almirante, where you'll take a short boat ride to Isla Colon in the Bocas del Toro archipelago. Rapidly becoming a Caribbean favourite, Bocas del Toro has it all – palm-shaded beaches with crystal-clear water, spectacular snorkelling and lots of wildlife. Culturally, Bocas is home to West Indians, Latinos and expats, resulting in diverse music, nightlife and food scenes. For the next three nights, you'll stay on Isla Colon, the main town in Bocas del Toro. It's a great spot to start your exploration of the archipelago from, with most bars, restaurants and local activity operators just metres from your hotel.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s travel time: approx. 3 hours
Today is the first of two free days to explore this tropical archipelago. There are several beaches within reach from town, lying between 8 and 14 kilometres from your hotel. With azure waters, pristine coral reefs and a rollicking nightlife, it’s easy to see why these islands are a favourite haunt for so many travellers. The safest beaches are Starfish, Sandfly and Big Creek. Be aware others may have strong riptides. When the sun goes down, why not head into town and check out the local bar and restaurant scene. Ask your leader about the best place to grab a drink.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Bocas del Toro - Jungle Cacao Tour (guide and transport included) - USD35
  • Bocas del Toro - Zapatilla Tour including Sloth Island & snorkelling at Cayo Coral (guide and transport included) - USD45
  • Bocas del Toro - Full-day Tour including Bastimentos island, Jungle hike & Lunch with Ngobe Community (guide and transport included) - USD60
  • Bocas del Toro - Bio-luminescence Boat Tour (guide and transport included) - USD25
  • Bocas del Toro - Colon Expedition including starfish beach & bird island - USD40
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Enjoy another free day in the Caribbean sun. Maybe take the opportunity to do some surfing or snorkelling, to rent a bike and explore the main island, or simply soak in the chilled-out vibe while enjoying a cold one on the beach.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Travel by boat and local bus to Boquete, this is a lengthy journey, be sure to have a book, podcast or daydream to keep you occupied. Boquete is a picturesque town located in the highlands of Panama, surrounded by mountains, crystal-clear creeks and rivers, forest reserves, and colourful wildflowers, as well as coffee plantations and orange groves. Head out on an orientation walk with your leader on arrival and enjoy an informal Spanish lesson to get to grips with the local language. Tomorrow will be a free day, wide open for exploring – most optional activities can be organised directly from the hostel, though it’s a good idea book them on arrival tonight if you know what you want to do.
Accommodation
  • Hostel (multishare) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Boquete - Leader-led orientation walk
  • Leader-led Informal Spanish Lesson
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
For the next two nights you’ll being staying in multi-share accommodation, which typically includes triple and quadruple rooms. You may be required to share with group members of the opposite sex and couples or people travelling together may occasionally be separated due to rooming configurations.

Total travel time: 8-9 hours
There are plenty of ways for you to experience Boquete today, be sure to chat to your leader and hostel front desk to get the best insiders tips. You could discover the secret waterfalls only locals know about on a walking tour in the jungle. Or maybe you’d prefer to soak it up in the caldera hot springs. If you’re a coffee lover, consider taking a visit to a plantation or simply kicking back in town with a cup of the local brew – some of the best coffee in the world is grown and processed right here in Boquete.
Accommodation
  • Hostel (multishare) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Boquete - Guided Tour of Hidden Waterfalls (entrance fee, transport and guide included) - USD50
  • Boquete - Mini Canyons Tour (entrance fee, transport and guide included) - USD30
  • Boquete - Guided Bicycle Tour (guide and bike hire included) - USD55
  • Boquete - Calderas Hot Springs (entrance fee and transport included, no guide) - USD35
  • Boquete - Zipline (guide and transport included) - USD65
  • Boquete - Coffee Plantation Tour (guide and transport included) - USD35
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today we catch a bus to Santa Catalina, situated on the Pacific coast of Panama. Remote and somewhat undeveloped, this region offers some of the best surfing in Central America, as well as some of the most relaxed vibes. Enjoy free time upon arrival. It’s going to be late afternoon or early evening by the time you get in, so perhaps find a spot to share a drink and fresh seafood dinner with your fellow travellers, or head to the beach for a sundown swim.
Accommodation
  • Cabins (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today’s total travel time: 8 hours
Aside from surfing, the main way to pass the time in Santa Catalina is by relaxing, preferably in a hammock. But if you’re keen for something active, perhaps take a trip out to Coiba National Marine Park, where you can snorkel with turtles, angel rays and schools of colourful fish. Alternatively, half-day fishing trips or surfboard hire is available in the town. Lessons are readily available, so there's no reason to fear the waves.
Accommodation
  • Cabins (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Santa Catalina - Surf lesson (2 hrs) - USD35
  • Santa Catalina - Coiba Island & Grano de Oro snorkelling trip - USD100
  • Santa Catalina - Fishing trip (half day) - USD100
  • Santa Catalina - Surfboard rental (per day) - USD15
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Trade in the beach for the city and travel to Panama City, Central America's glitziest capital. Arrive late afternoon and head into the city for a leader led walk. Take in great views of the historic Casco Viejo (Old Town) and the Panama City skyline as you stroll past crowded waterfront soccer fields, running paths and food carts. Afterwards, enjoy free time to sample Panama City’s thriving nightlife.
Accommodation
  • Hostel (multishare) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Panama City - Leader-led walk in Casco Viejo
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
For the next two nights you’ll being staying in multi-share accommodation, which typically includes triple and quadruple rooms. You may be required to share with group members of the opposite sex and couples or people travelling together may occasionally be separated due to rooming configurations.

Today’s total travel time: 6 hours
Today, head to the city’s gorgeous waterfront promenade, the Cinta Costera (causeway), for a walking tour with your leader. Stop at the nearby Fish Market, and perhaps grab some fresh ceviche. This afternoon is yours to explore, perhaps visit the engineering marvel of the Panama Canal, or take a stroll through the rainforest in the Metropolitan Nature Park. Panama City is also famous for its shopping centres, the biggest being Albrook Mall. For more traditional souvenirs, head to the National Artisan's Market.
Accommodation
  • Hostel (multishare) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Panama City - Leader-led walk along part of the Cinta Costera (Causeway) including a visit to the Fish Market
Optional Activities
  • Panama City - Panama Canal: Miraflores Locks (entrance fee only, no guide, no transport) - USD20
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Your adventure ends today, there are no activities planned. If you plan on staying on to check out some more of Panama City, why not do it on an Urban Adventure. With day tours like Taste of Panama City, you can sample local cocktails, craft beers and ceviche under the guidance of someone who knows the city well. Go to urbanadventures.com and search ‘Panama’ for more.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.

Meals

1 breakfast, 2 dinners

Transport

Private vehicle, Public bus, local bus, Taxi, Shared boat, Ferry

Accommodation

Hotel (22 nights), Lodge (2 nights), Hostel multishare (2 nights), Hostel (2 nights)

Included activities

  • San Miguel - Salvadoran Pupusa cooking demonstration
  • Copan Ruins - Visit
  • Suchitoto - Leader led orientation walk
  • Leon - Leader led orientation walk
  • Granada - Breakfast at El Cafe de las Sonrisas
  • Monteverde - Leader-led orientation walk
  • La Fortuna - Leader led orientation walk
  • San Jose - Leader-led orientation walk
  • Puerto Viejo - Leader-led orientation walk
  • Puerto Viejo - Hands-on dinner in local home
  • Boquete - Leader-led orientation walk
  • Leader-led Informal Spanish Lesson
  • Panama City - Leader-led walk in Casco Viejo
  • Panama City - Leader-led walk along part of the Cinta Costera (Causeway) including a visit to the Fish Market

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Amazing Central America trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

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Important notes

Travellers on Intrepid trips that start on or before 31 December 2022 are required to produce proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. Learn more about Intrepid’s COVID-19 policy.

1. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm on Day 1 in Antigua. There are no activities planned for the final day so you may depart at any time.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement does not apply to Days 23 & 24 (Boquete), Days 25 & 26 (Santa Catalina), and Days 27 & 28 (Panama City) where you will be in shared accommodation, and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
3. Multishare typically includes triple and quad rooms. You may be required to share with group members of the opposite sex and couples or people travelling together may occasionally be separated due to rooming configurations.
4. To save you money and the hassle of booking multiple trips, this journey is a combination of some of our most popular adventures. Your leader and the composition of your group may change with the start of each adventure.
5. Please be careful when booking flights to Antigua; make sure you fly into Guatemala City Airport [GUA]. Guatemala City Airport is the closest airport to Antigua. Please do not book flights to Antigua & Barbuda Airport [ANU] as this is an island in the Caribbean.
6. Travel is always an adventure and, as destinations reopen, there are a few challenges as everyone gets back up to speed and adjusts to the new normal. Our leaders are experts when it comes to dealing with anything unexpected along the journey, so pack your understanding and flexibility, sit back and relax while they take care of the rest.
7. As per updated Nicaragua entry requirements, customers are currently required to supply a copy of their passport front page to their booking agent no later than 15 days prior to departure.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides 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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