Guatemala Adventure Tour Itinerary

 
  Guatemala Adventure Tour Itinerary
  Day Activity Destination
  Day 1 / Monday Guatemala City (Arrival Day)  
    Upon your arrival your guide will be waiting for you at the airport to take you on a private transfer to your Hotel.  
  Day 2 / Tuesday Guatemala City – Biotope of the Quetzal – Sta. Cruz Verapaz  
    Your day will start with a visit to one of Guatemala’s colonial treasures, the Church of La Merced. With its stunning interior featuring an extensive collection of religious art, sculpture, and relics. Church La Merced
    On the way to your next destination you will be driven into the deep Motagua Valley with its savannah type of climate and then up the mountains to the Guatemalan Cloud Forest, witnessing the extraordinary climate diversity of the country.  
    Ram Tzul, your next place to visit,  is a large estate consisting of a small but valuable primary forest, sanctuary of the Quetzal bird. A walk through this estate will also lead you to Rubel Chaim, a waterfall that, with its 60 m, is one of the highest in the country. Ram Tzul
  Day 3 /Wednesday Coban – San Cristobal Verapaz – Semuc Champey – Coban  
 
Today you will visit a Marimba carpenter, local version of a Xylophone. Instrument builder Antonio Galvez is also a talented interpreter of these instruments, and will explain in detail how the instrument is built. Marimbas Carpentry of Family Galvez in Santa Cristobal Verapaz
    From here you will continue towards Semuc Champey, where pristine waters emerging from the karst mountains have created a series of pools in which you can relax and swim, surrounded by the lush vegetation of the jungle. A two hour walk here will lead you to a fantastic view point just before reaching the pools. Semuc Champey
  Day 4 / Thursday Coban – Candelaria – Flores  
    Freddy Archila has the biggest orchid nursery in the country, striving to save endangered species from disappearing. Some of his three thousand species of orchids you will see in his nursery are now extinct in their natural environment. Orchid Nursery of Freddy Archila
    Your next destination will be the Caves of Candelaria, a large natural cave system including coulisses, secondary and upper passages, and is estimated to be 80 km long. A 45 min walk through the cave will lead you through enormous galleries and ‘windows’ facing the outside jungle. Once you reach the underground river you will join a spectacular ride on inner tubes through the cave river and the jungle outside. Candelaria Caves
  Day 5 / Friday Flores – Tikal – Rio Dulce  
    Todays excursion will take us back in time to the splendor of the Mayan kingdom of Tikal. Situated in the Petén basin, northern Guatemala, the site is part of Guatemala’s Tikal National Park and in 1979 it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Tikal was the capital of a conquest state that became one of the most powerful kingdoms of the ancient Maya. Though monumental architecture at the site dates back as far as the 4th century BC, Tikal reached its apogee during the Classic Period, ca. 200 to 900 AD. During this time, the city dominated much of the Maya region politically, economically, and militarily, while interacting with areas throughout Mesoamerica such as the great metropolis of Teotihuacan in the distant Valley of Mexico. Tikal
 
Day 6 / Saturday Rio Dulce – Livingston – Rio Dulce  
  The Castillo de San Felipe is a Spanish colonial fort located at the entrance to Lake Izabal in eastern Guatemala. You’ll start your day visiting this site, which was added to the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List in 2002. Castillo de San Felipe de Lara
    Continue on to the Rio Dulce, part of a lake and river system that has become a popular cruising sailboat destination. On your way across the long and narrow lake ‘El Golfete’, you will pass through many small islands and a large natural anchorage.
From El Golfete the river meanders for six miles (10 km) through a spectacular gorge with its sides rising up to 300 feet (91 m) on either side and covered with teak, mahogany and palms.
Rio Dulce & El Golfete
    The river enters the Caribbean Sea near the Garifuna town of Livingston, your next destination, a tiny and painteresque Caribbean, at the mouth of the Río Dulce to the Gulf of Honduras. Livingston is noted for its unusual mix of Garífuna, Maya and Ladino people and culture. Livingston
  Day 7 / Sunday Rio Dulce – Finca Paraíso – Quirigua – Antigua  
 
Don’t forget your bathing-suit today. On Lake Izabal’s northern shore you will visit the wonderful hot springs of Finca El Paraíso. Here a warm-water fall plunges into a clear pool cooled by flows from surrounding pristine streams. Finca Paraiso
    Your next stop will be Quirigua, a medium-sized archaeological site along the lower Motagua River. During the Maya Classic Period (AD 200–900), Quiriguá was situated at the juncture of several important trade routes.
The ceremonial architecture at Quiriguá is quite modest, but the site’s importance lies in its wealth of sculpture, including the tallest stone monuments ever erected in the New World for which it was declared a World Heritage Site in 1981.
Quirigua
    You’re final destination today will be the colonial town of Antigua.  
  Day 8 / Monday Antigua City Tour  
    La Azotea is a cultural center and museum complex, that comprises three separate museums: a coffee museum, which illustrates the history of processing and marketing Coffee production in Guatemala; the Mayan Music Museum, which houses Mayan musical instruments from pre and post Columbian times; and the Rincon de Sacatepéquez Museum which has items related to traditional Guatemalan dresses. La Azotea Cultural Center
    Later this morning you will continue your City Tour, exploring some of Guatemalas most impressive colonial monuments starting with Church San Francisco, one of the most frequented sanctuaries by the local population because of the shrine of Peter of Saint Joseph Betancur. San Francisco Church
    The cloister of Santa Clara is a notable convent and one of the finest examples of an 18th century convent in Guatemala. The inner patio with its beautiful garden as well as the church with its late baroque facade is now a popular scenario of the fanciest weddings and events in town. Santa Clara Cloister
    Last but not least Saint Joseph Cathedral church, originally built around 1541.
The devastating 1773 earthquake seriously damaged much of the building, however the two towers at the front remained largely intact. These have undergone restoration work, and the cathedral has been partly rebuilt.
San Jose Catedral
  Day 9 / Thursday Antigua – Comalapa – Iximche – Lake Atitlan  
    San Juan Comalapa is sometimes called the “Florence of America”, because of the many Kaqchikel painters living there.
The painting tradition started in the 1930’s, when Kaqchikel painter Andrés Curruchich (1891-1969) started painting with oil. Today there are some 500 painters in San Juan Comalapa, and the majority of them still use the techniques of Curruchich. These painters are dedicated to paintig the costumes, life experiences and traditions of the Indian towns.
Market & Art Gallery at San Juan Comalapa
    Iximche is a Pre-Columbian archaeological site, former capital of the Late Postclassic Kaqchikel Maya kingdom from 1470 until its abandonment in 1524. The architecture of the site included a number of pyramid-temples, palaces and two  ball-courts. The ruins of Iximche were declared a Guatemalan National Monument in the 1960s. Iximche
    Your final destination today will be Panajachel at the northern side of Lake Atitlan.  
  Day 10 / Wednesday Lake Atitlan (boat ride to three villages)  
 
Today you will take a boat ride to the southern towns of Lake Atitlan.  
    San Juan La Laguna is a town with a population approximately 95% Tz’utujil Maya. Agriculture is most important for the economy, however since the late 90s, after hurricane Mitch caused a mayor loss in the coffee crops and therefore in the peoples income, many women organized themselves to start producing textiles products that they dye with natural colors San Juan La Laguna
    San Pedro La Laguna is one of the lakes primary coffee growing areas and a backpacker destination. Many travelers visit the town to study at one of the Spanish schools, take time out in a solar pool, or take a horse-ride to the top of the volcano which bears the same name of the town. San Pedro La Laguan
    Santiago Atitlan sits on a bay of Lago Atitlan between two volcanos. Even though Santiago is connected by road to most of the villages around the lake, boats primarily connect it with the numerous communities around Lago Atitlan.
The Cofradía (religious brotherhoods), manage a parallel power and are the guardians of the modern and ancient religious practices, most notably the cult of Maximón to whom they offer liquor and tobacco in exchange of favors.
Santiago Atitlan
  Day 11 / Thursday Lake Atitlan – Chichicastenango – Antigua  
    Chichicastenango is well known for its famous market days where vendors sell handicrafts, food, flowers, pottery, wooden boxes, condiments, medicinal plants, candles, pom and copal (traditional incense), cal (lime stones for preparing tortillas), grindstones, pigs and chickens, machetes, and many other things.
The manufacture of masks, used by dancers in traditional dances, such as the Dance of the Conquest, have also made this city well-known for woodcarving.
Next to the market is the 400-year old church of Santo Tomás. It is built atop a Pre-Columbian temple platform, and the steps originally leading to a temple of the pre-Hispanic Maya civilization remain venerated. K’iche’ Maya priests still use the church for their rituals, burning incense and candles.
Chichicastenango
  Day 12 / Friday Antigua (Departure Day)  
    A private shuttle will take you to the Airport in Guatemala City. Departure time will be scheduled according flight time. You will leave your Hotel three and a half to four hours before your boarding time.  

Starting at $2450 per person

Included in the Guatemala Adventure Tour:

• *12 days, 11 nights at 3 to 5 Star and unique hotels

• Most meals included (per itinerary)

• All transportation by motor coach/boat

• Excursions/entrance fees per itinerary

• Guide

NOT Included:

• Airfare from your hometown to Guatemala

• Airport baggage handling tips (we recommend 5 Qs per bag)

• Guatemalan Airport Security Tax (Q20.00) or any additional security or airport tax

• Alcohol or personal room charges

• Tips – Recommendations: Guide $3 to $5 per day, p/p; Driver $1.50 per day,p/p; Baggage handling $2 per hotel p/p.

*Longer stays or add-ons may be arranged

For more information on leading one of our Guatemala AdventureTours, please visit the Lead A Group page.

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