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Mayan Sun–Northbound
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Trek though jungle backdrops to Mayan ruins and chill out on white-sand beaches under the Caribbean sun. Check out Guatemala, Belize, and Mexico and experience the regions diversity. Wander colonial Antiguas cobblestone streets and shop for treasures before experiencing the natural beauty of Lake Atitln, its indigenous Mayan villages, and striking volcanoes. One of our most popular trips, this adventure offers natural wonders, excitement, and culture with enough time to socialize and do your own thing.

Latin America

Duration: 16 Days Guaranteed Departure: Yes
For lovers of: Physical rating: Average
Accommodation standard:   Not Rated% Traveller Tour Rating: 80.0%  
Your Guide: English speaking Tour code: 126644
Starts: Antigua, Guatemala Finishes: Playa del Carmen, Mexico
You will Visit
  • Antigua
  • Playa del Carmen

Itinerary

01

Day 1: Antigua

Check into the hotel and enjoy this colonial city.

Additional Notes:
Antigua is only an hour's drive from the capital, Guatemala City, and the airport. Transfers are easily arranged when you arrive at the airport, either by shuttle or taxi. Please try to arrive before 18:00 for an important group meeting where you will meet the Chief Experience Officer (CEO) and the other group members.

Please note that Antigua's nearest airport is Guatemala City, Guatemala. Don't get caught flying into the Caribbean island nation of Antigua; it's nowhere near the start of this tour!

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting

02

Day 2: Antigua

Explore this colonial city during an orientation walk, then get the feet moving to the beat with an included salsa lesson. Relax with a massage, and soak up the culture in one of many cafés.

Included Activities:
Orientation Walk
Salsa Lesson
Big Night Out

03

Day 3: Antigua/San Juan La Laguna (1D)

Travel through the hills and fertile fields of the Guatemalan highlands to the shores of Lake Atitlán, one of the most beautiful spots in Guatemala. Twelve native villages, blue/grey mountains, and three volcanoes line the shores of this lake, resulting in a wonderful combination of unusual natural beauty and traditional culture.

We will overnight at a G Adventures-supported homestay with a local family. Tonight, the group will be spread out among a number of homes, where dinner will also be provided. This once-in-a-lifetime experience will help you to gain a better understanding of the day-to-day life of the locals in this region.

Additional Notes:
Please dress conservatively when visiting the villages, and refrain from photographing religious ceremonies or individuals who do not wish to be photographed.

Included Activities:
Mayan Homestay Project

Transport:
Stretch out and unwind aboard our private ride.
Private Vehicle (4.00 hour(s), 100km)
Boat (0.50-0.75 hours)

04

Day 4: San Juan La Laguna/Panajachel (1B)

Return across the lake and enjoy free time in Panajachel to visit the market or relax.

Transport:
Boat (0.50-0.75 hours)

05

Day 5: Panajachel/Rio Dulce

Take the road past areas of dense jungle and arrive at Río Dulce, a small town on Lake Izabal, and a port stop for boaters around the globe on their way to/from Livingston and the Caribbean coast.

Transport:
Private Vehicle (9.00 hour(s), 400km)

06

Day 6: Rio Dulce

There are plenty of opportunities for R & R. Aside from boating on Lake Izabal, there are optional tours in the area to view protected manatees. You may opt to horseback ride through a rubber plantation, explore San Felipe fort, take the morning monkey kayak tour, relax in the thermal springs, or hike through the jungle-strewn trails in the Chocón-Machacas Natural Reserve area.

07

Day 7: Rio Dulce/Flores

Our final stop in Guatemala is Flores, a picturesque town surrounded by Lake Petén Itzá. Flores is well-known for its proximity to Tikal—the largest excavated Mayan site.

Transport:
Private Vehicle (3.50-4.00 hours, 210km)

08

Day 8: Flores/San Ignacio

Head north to the ancient city of Tikal before venturing into Belize. The spiritual centre of Tikal boasts the Mayan's highest pyramids and abundant flora and fauna in the surrounding jungle.

Included Activities:
Tikal Ruins Guided Tour
Border Crossing (Guatemala - Belize)

Transport:
Private Vehicle (1.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (1.00-1.50 hours)
Taxicab (0.25-0.50 hours)

09

Day 9: San Ignacio

From the town of San Ignacio, opportunities abound for exploring Belize's little known inland scenic beauty. With free time here, choose to explore the area by foot, canoe, or horse, take a caving trip, or visit the Mountain Pine Ridge Area and swim in its inviting pools and rivers.

10

Day 10: San Ignacio/Caye Caulker

Hop aboard a local bus, then board a water taxi to the island paradise of Caye Caulker. Later, explore Caye Caulker on the G Adventures-supported Bike with Purpose tour.

Included Activities:
Belize Bike with Purpose Tour

Transport:
Local bus (2.00 hour(s), 110km)
Boat (1.00 hour(s))

11

Day 11: Caye Caulker

Enjoy free time to snorkel with stingrays and nurse sharks at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, go diving, or just chill out, Belizean style.

12

Day 13: Caye Caulker/Mahahual

Leaving Belize and its Caribbean reggae-tinged vibe, head north to the Costa Maya, Mexico, to the beachside town of Mahahual.

Included Activities:
Border Crossing (Belize - Mexico)

Transport:
Boat (1.00 hour(s))
Local bus (3.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s), 145km)

13

Day 14: Mahahual

Enjoy a free day for beach lounging and sipping seaside margaritas.

14

Day 15: Mahahual/Playa del Carmen

Head north to Playa del Carmen, Mexico, the de facto centre of the Mayan Riviera. This once sleepy village is quickly becoming a popular destination among sun worshippers and partiers worldwide.

Transport:
First-class bus (5.00 hour(s))

15

Day 16: Playa del Carmen

Depart at any time.

Additional Notes:
Playa del Carmen is located just south of Cancún airport (45 min drive) so you can easily head directly there without returning to Cancún.

Included Activities:
Departure Day

Inclusions:
    Activities
    • Orientation walk in Antigua
    • G Adventures-supported homestay project at Lake Atitlan with a local family
    • Group salsa dancing lesson
    • Guided tour of Tikal
    • G Adventures-supported bike tour of Caye Caulker
    • Beach time in Mahahual
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    Accommodation
    • Simple hotels/hostels (14 nts, some multi-share), local homestay (1 nt)
    • 1 breakfast, 1 dinner
    Transport
    • Public bus, boat, van, taxi, walking
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout
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Tour Highlights:
  • Walk along cobblestones in gorgeous colonial Antigua
  • Overnight in a local homestay
  • Experience the vibrant colours of markets
  • Watch the sunset in Caye Caulker
  • Bliss out on white-sand beaches
  • Explore ancient Mayan sites.


Reviews (4)
Taran B Posted on: 

Fantastic! Felt like travelling with a group of friends and our leader was amazing. Our leader was able to help out with whatever we required.

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Kaylie L Posted on: 

Amazing. Would definitely recommend to friends and family. Absolutely loved it and looking forward to more adventures in the region in the future.

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Tormod M Posted on: 

The trip was excellent! Many and good activity options. Loved the diversity. Everything from mountain hiking and caving to relaxing on the beach. Nice!

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Sharlene T Posted on: 

A great introduction to Central America. I always felt like we were seeing the true culture of the countries and having experiences that the average tourist might not have.

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