Guatemala,

Guatemala: The Natural Choice

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Tailor-Made Tour
15 Days
From £3955
GEOIP Not Available
Birding
Culture and Archaeology

Tour Introduction

15 Days from £3955
GEOIP Not Available
per adult.

Guatemala has many natural attractions, and this exciting programme includes the most significant ones. Beginning with Antigua, a showpiece Spanish colonial town, you explore a nearby volcano for an inkling of the Earth’s latent thermal power. There follows the picturesque, forest-lined Rio Dulce with its fort, thermal vents and deep gorge, culminating in the colourful Garifuna town of Livingston. Soak up the Caribbean atmosphere and head out to Playa Blanca beach and the Seven Altares rainforest pools. Later on, transfer to the wilds of El Peten where the country’s only true jungle lodge can be found on a loop in a wild river. After a couple of days’ guided nature walks and boat rides, head to Tikal for exploration of that famous Maya site, plus Uaxactun with its ancient observatory, and Yaxha for a dramatic sunset seen from atop a temple. Plenty of birds and other fauna are also in evidence in the thick lowland forests surrounding these iconic Maya sites. At the end of your trip you will have formed a deep understanding of the beauty and wildness of Guatemala.

Full Itinerary

Price from £3955
GEOIP Not Available
per adult. Based on sharing double / twin rooms
Day 1
Travel day

Arrive Guatemala City. Met & transfer to your hotel.

Staying at Holiday Inn. Includes Breakfast.

Day 2
Antigua

Morning transfer to Antigua, one of Latin America’s best preserved Spanish colonial cities with cobbled streets and a wide variety of shops, art galleries, bars and restaurants.

Staying at Meson De Maria. Includes Breakfast.

Day 3
Antigua

Morning guided walking tour of Antigua to see the old buildings and monuments. Afternoon at leisure for independent exploration of the town, or with your guide.

Staying at Meson De Maria. Includes Breakfast.

Day 4
Pacaya Volcano

After breakfast, transfer to Pacaya volcano, 2,500m above sea level and one of the youngest and most active volcanoes in the region. Hike the trails with far views to three other volcanoes and Lake Atitlan. After a picnic lunch on the volcano’s slopes, return to Antigua.

Staying at Meson De Maria. Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 5
Livingston

Morning transfer to Rio Dulce. On arrival, board a boat for a long, scenic ride along the jungle-lined “Sweet River” through an impressive gorge to the town of Livingston, on the Caribbean Sea. Check in to your hotel then wander through the small, colourful town, taking in the relaxed Garifuna ambience.

Staying at Villa Caribe . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 6
Livingston

Take a 25-minute boat ride to Playa Blanca, an unspoilt, white-sand beach accessible only by sea with clear, shallow Caribbean waters. After enjoying a swim, venture into the rainforest for the Siete Altares, seven freshwater jungle pools whose waters flow gently to the sea. After a picnic lunch and maybe another swim in the warm Caribbean waters, take your boat back to Livingston.

Staying at Villa Caribe . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 7
El Peten

After breakfast, drive north to El Peten, Guatemala’s largest department yet containing only 3% of its people. Within its primary rainforest lie the ruins of the major Maya site of Tikal, as well as other smaller ancient cities. Arrive in the Tikal area and check in.

Staying at Villa Maya. Includes Breakfast.

Day 8
Laguna Del Tigre National Park

After a refreshing rest, transfer further northwest to the Laguna Del Tigre National Park. Embark by river boat to Guatemala’s only true rainforest wildlife lodge.

Staying at Las Guacamayas Biological Station . Includes All Meals.

Day 9
Laguna Del Tigre National Park

Enjoy morning and afternoon wildlife activities, and perhaps a night walk on the trail near the lodge to look for owls which roost near the lodge's lookout.

Staying at Las Guacamayas Biological Station. Includes All Meals.

Day 10
Laguna Del Tigre National Park

A further day of morning, afternoon and possibly night wildlife activities. These may include rainforest walks, hikes and river boat rides.

Staying at Las Guacamayas Biological Station. Includes All Meals.

Day 11
Tikal area

Last morning excursion to enjoy the wilderness of Las Guacamayas. Transfer by boat and road back to the Tikal area.

Staying at Jungle Lodge . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 12
Tikal area

Morning transfer to Uaxactun Maya site, surrounded by dense tropical rainforest. Plenty of bird species and some mammals may be seen en route. Uaxactun’s Astronomical Observation Complex is still important for present day Maya ceremonies and rituals, with equinoxes and solstices celebrated each year during the Uaxactun Festival. Lunch at a local Maya village house. After lunch, transfer back to your hotel.

Staying at Jungle Lodge . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 13
Tikal area

After breakfast, walk with your guide to Tikal National Park and learn about the various Maya structures. After exploring Tikal, enjoy lunch at a jungle restaurant. After lunch, transfer to Yaxha temple site for further Maya exploration and to see the sun set over the rainforest from atop a pyramid-shaped temple. Wildlife can be seen along the road between Tikal and Yaxha.

Staying at Jungle Lodge . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 14
Flores

Morning transfer by boat and car to Flores for your flight to Guatemala City. On arrival, met & transfer to your hotel.

Staying at Holiday Inn . Includes Breakfast.

Day 15
Depart Guatemala City

Transfer to airport. Fly out.

Staying at In Flight . Includes In-flight Meals.

Tour Accommodation

Guatemala Northern Guatemala

Jungle Lodge Hotel

Overview

Jungle Lodge is located practically adjacent to the main Tikal Mayan ruins site, which makes early morning starts for the sunrise tour and further visits so much easier. It is the only good hotel situated so conveniently close to the site.

The recently renovated, comfortable bungalows are decorated with intricate Mayan designs and connected by a cobblestone path through gardens to the lobby.

The hotel pool is perfect after a long hot day exploring the Mayan ruins. There’s a bar and a deck seating area in the shade. Occasionally howler and spider monkeys swing by in the treetops and pairs of parrots pass overhead, squawking their way to the evening roost.

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
No
Facilities

Each thatched roof bungalow boasts a private bathroom and a ceiling fan.

The hotel has a bar, lounge, restaurant, outdoor pool, 24-hour front desk, room service and laundry service.

WiFi runs 24 hours a day, available only in the lobby and restaurant areas.

Jungle Lodge is committed to staying green and only run the electricity generator twice a day: from 1-2pm and from 5-10pm. The only exception is the main lobby, where the electricity runs credit card transactions and WiFi. Gas lamps are provided.

Local Wildlife

Spider monkeys, howler monkeys, coatimundi, keel-billed toucans, scarlet macaws and ocellated turkeys are some of the wildlife you can expect to see in the grounds and the night air is filled with the sounds of the jungle's smaller creatures such as frogs and crickets.

Guatemala Southern Guatemala

Hotel Meson De Maria

Overview

Hotel Meson de María is perfectly positioned for exploring the heart of Antigua as it’s located very close to Calle del Arco, Antigua’s main street, and just 150 metres from the town’s main plaza. On the third floor there is a roof terrace affording the best views of the Agua, Fuego and Acatenango volcanoes which surround the valley.

The hotel is set in a finely restored mansion built in the 17th century. It creates a relaxed, refined atmosphere with its charming central courtyard and lovely roof terrace, making it a haven of calm after the busy streets of Antigua.

The service is warm and friendly, and the rooms have comfortable beds and are elegantly decorated in a colonial style with warm earthy tones .

Swimming Pool
No
Air Conditioning
No
Rooms
20
Facilities

All rooms have free WiFi, cable TV, DVD, safe, telephone, private bathroom, hairdryer, free toiletries and an outdoor area with either a courtyard setting or views over Antigua to the mountains beyond. The hotel has two restaurants, a 24-hour reception desk, room service, laundry, babysitting service, shoe shine service (free), and a business centre. The solarium has reclining chairs and massage services are available by appointment.

Optional Activities

Exploring the historical churches and streets around Antigua. Adventure tours and excursions to volcanoes are possible.

Guatemala Southern Guatemala

Holiday Inn Guatemala

Overview

The Holiday Inn is an international class hotel conveniently located in the heart of Guatemala City next to the business, financial and entertainment districts with great restaurants nearby. Only five minutes from La Aurora International Airport, the hotel offers standard rooms, family rooms and 10 Suites.

The well-run hotel was renovated in the last few years and the rooms are pleasant and user friendly, with effective black out blinds for a sound sleep.There is a heated outdoor pool and a fitness centre for those that need re-energising after a long flight or before departing Guatemala.

The restaurant, Los Comensales, is located on the second floor serving Guatemalan and international cuisine. The restaurant offers a buffet breakfast as well as lunch and dinner. The Sonata Bar is a perfect spot in which to unwind after a long journey.

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
Yes
Rooms
210
Facilities

A heated outdoor pool, fitness centre, WiFi available in the rooms, currency exchange, wall to wall carpeting, flat screen TV, safe in the room, two telephone extensions, central air conditioning, radio and alarm clock, coffee maker, iron and ironing board, wake up calls, ;uggage storage and a gift shop.

Guatemala Eastern Guatemala

Hotel Villa Caribe

Overview

Hotel Villa Caribe occupies an enviable seaside location on the edge of Livingston, a lively, small Garifuna town surrounded by tropical vegetation located at the mouth of the Rio Dulce where it flows into the Caribbean Sea. The fact that Livingston can be reached only by boat makes it an even more exclusive and attractive destination.

The hotel is a little dated but one of the best options for Livingston, with spacious, clean, air-conditioned rooms. All rooms are en suite with private balcony offering a panoramic view over the Rio Dulce and Amatique Bay. Service is friendly and the food in the hotel’s restaurant is wholesome.

The town itself has many shops and bars, and restaurants serving tasty Caribbean dishes. It is quite unlike the rest of Guatemala, resembling more its close neighbour, Belize.

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
Yes
Rooms
43
Facilities

Free WiFi, bar, lounge, outdoor pool, air conditioning, room service, laundry service.

Optional Activities

Trip to 7 Altares - a small river flows into the sea passing through seven small natural pools that are good for a swim. It’s roughly 20 minutes by boat from Livingston. There are various sulphur springs along the river too.

Playa Blanca - White Beach is 45 minutes by boat from Livingston. Perfect to get away and relax, as the beach at Livingston is not good for swimming.

Route Map

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Hotel Villa Caribe: 15.824961, -88.749370
Meson De Maria: 14.558359, -90.734965
Jungle Lodge: 17.225779, -89.614391
Holiday Inn Guatemala City: 14.598838, -90.515781

Departure Dates

This tour has no set departure date and can be tailored to suit your travel requirements. Contact us for more details.

Travel Information

Are International Flights Included?

No. Please contact us for a quote if required.

Flight Info:

Fly BA from London Heathrow to Dallas and connect with American Airlines to Guatemala City.

Best Visited:

November to April

Are you ATOL Registered?

Yes. This means we are legally able to book your international flights in conjunction with your ground arrangements so you can book with us with complete confidence. Read more about our ATOL license here.

Alan Godwin

Area Specialist

If you have any questions regarding this Tour, please feel free to contact me on +44 (0)1803 866965