Central America Travel Itinerary
Belize City ->Orange Walk ->Caye Caulker ->San Ignacio ->Tikal ->Puerto Barrio ->Guatemala City ->San Salvador ->Copan ->San Pedro ->Tegucigalpa ->Granada ->Omerte ->Liberia ->Monteverde ->Arenal ->San Jose ->Manuel Antonio ->Corcavado ->Bocas Del Toro ->Panama City
Central America is a raw travel experience. It has only recently hit the tourist trail, and though there is a worn gringo trail, compared to places in Southeast Asia, Europe, or Australia, it is much less traveled and much cheaper. Start or finish in either Belize or Panama. Starting in Belize, fly into Belize City and head north to Orange walk to check out the historic site of Lamanai before heading south to the islands (cayes). Relax in the hip Caye Caulker, eating at the famous Wish Willys and sailing out to the reef. If you dive, make sure to visit the wold famous Blue Hole. Head inland towards Guatemala and stop at San Ignacio on the way. Here the country becomes more Spanish influence than Caribbean influenced. Take a trip into the hills of the Pine Mountain Forest Reserve and see the Mayan site of Corocal, a city that once rivaled Tikal. Go caving at the ATM cave before heading into Guatemala and first stopping at Flores to see one of the greatest sites in the world, Tikal. After discovering your Indian Jones, head to Puerto Barrios to recharge your tan and then head inland to Guatemala City. From there, enjoy the ancient Spanish architecture of Antigua, a true Gringo paradise.
After that move into El Salvador for some great hiking, cheap food, and great surfing at La Liberdad. Head up into Honduras and check out ancient ruins at Copan, where you can also hike and ride horses. Then head up the coast for some diving and surfing and down to the capital, Tegucigalpa, for some colonial buildings before heading into Nicaragua. Visit the historic colonial city of Granada and head to Omerte. Omerte is an island volcano in the middle of a huge lake. Enjoy hammocks, sunsets, hikes, and great food. From there move into Costa Rica, the most touristy and biggest destination in all of Central America. Here, visit the cloud forest of Monteverde, the active volcano of Arenal for a night light show and then head to the colonial capital of San Jose. Head to Manuel Antonio on the Pacific (or Torteguero on the Caribbean or both!) for some beach activities. Manuel Antonio has a great park with three types of monkeys. From there head, back to San Jose and south toward Corcovado, for some untouched jungle trekking, eco-tourism, and diving. Finally, finish off in Panama hitting up the Bocas Del Toro for slow island living, surfing and relaxation. Finish off in Panama City and watch the ships pass through the Panama Canal.
Minimum Completion Time: 5 Weeks