Belize, Guatemala & Barrier Reef

Itinerary in Brief:  Combine Pristine Jungle, Magnificent Ruins, and the Barrier Reef  

  • Belize’s beautiful western region
  • Mayan culture and lush rainforest
  • Two nights in Guatemala
  • Magnificent ruins at Tikal
  • Premier small hotels throughout
  • Finish off at the beach
  • Spectacular barrier reef
  • See below for day by day details

Day by Day Itinerary

Included meals are indicated in parentheses: (B,L,D)

Day 1       Arrive to Belize / transfer to the Cayo District

Upon arrival in Belize you’ll be met at the airport and have a private transfer to western Belize to your jungle lodge (1 1/2 hours scenic drive), set in a hilly section of the rainforest, right along the lovely Macal River. The western part of Belize is the country’s best kept secret: beautiful rainforest, excellent accommodations, and many extraordinary excursions are available.
Chaa Creek (Cottage Room; 3 bedroom Orchard Villa also available for families) (D)

Day 2       Actun Tunichil Muknal

Today you will take a remarkable but somewhat adventurous caving trip to Actun Tunichil Muknal, one of the great archeological caving experiences in the Americas, where you can journey far into a winding cave filled with relics from ancient Mayan rituals. Other great but less adventurous options exist, please inquire if interested.
Chaa Creek (B,L,D)

Day 3       Free day for Optional Activities

Free day for optional activities in the Cayo District and around your lodge. Options include horseback riding, hiking, canoeing on the Macal River, bike riding, or visiting nearby Mayan ruins. (If you would rather have an extra day at the beach, rather than in the Cayo, an alternative is to add another day to your beach stay rather than here.)
Chaa Creek (B,L,D)

Day 4       Full day trip to the ruins of Tikal in Guatemala

After enjoying the morning in Chaa Creek, you’ll be driven over to Guatemala for a visit to the magnificent ruins of Tikal (2 hours drive), one of the greatest achievements of the Mayan civilization (private driver and guide). You’ll spend the night in a boutique hotel (owned by Francis Ford Coppola) that sits on Lake Peten (pictured at right), about 45 minutes from Tikal. Spending the night in Guatemala gives you a great chance to experience some more of this beautiful country.
La Lancha (Lakeview Casita) (B,L,D)

Day 5       Free Day on Lake Peten

Today you have a free day to enjoy the area around Lake Peten or just relax at your hotel. It’s a beautiful location and merits some extra time. One excellent optional excursion if you are interested in seeing more Mayan ruins is to visit the site of Yaxha… this is a much less visited and significant Mayan site with great views out over the surrounding rainforest and of Yaxha lagoon. The area is also home to abundant wildlife.
La Lancha (B,L,D)

Day 6       Transfer to the Beach in Placencia

Today will be picked up for transfer down to the Caribbean coast in the southern part of Belize. The drive goes down the Hummingbird Highway, one of the most beautiful drives in all of Central America, where you will drop down from the highland to lowland rainforest and have great views of the mountain range that runs through the center of Belize (about 5 hours drive). Arrive to your beach hotel, one of the premier small hotels in the area.
Turtle Inn (Seafront Cottage; 2 bedroom Seafront Villa also available for families) (B)

Day 7       Snorkeling on the Barrier Reef

Today you’ll have a full day, private snorkeling excursion out to the Barrier Reef. You’ll make stops at some of the classic spots and also visit one or two of the islands that dot the reef. You’ll enjoy a barbeque lunch before returning to your hotel for the evening.
Turtle Inn (B,L)

Day 8       Free Day

Today you have a free day for optional activities at the beach and on the Barrier Reef. A variety of land excursions are also possible, including trips to Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, to see jungle rivers, or to visit small local Mayan villages.
Turtle Inn (B)

Day 9       Depart for home

You will be transferred to the airport in Placencia where you will take a small plane to Belize City (30 minute flight) and connect with your international flight home.
(B)


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