Sorry! There are no remaining departures for "Best of Central America" (CRBO), but here are some similar trips.


Please note that this tour has been extended by one more day in 2014. Please click here to see the new itinerary and dates.

Best of Central America

32 days,San José to Playa del Carmen

Bargaining at local markets, exploring a misty cloud forest in Monteverde, taking in breathtaking Ometepe Island, blissing out on a stretch of remote Nicaraguan beach, walking the colonial streets of colourful Granada and Antigua, snorkelling coral reefs, spending the night at Guatemalan and Nicaraguan homestays, exploring Mayan ruins of Copán and Tikal.


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From ancient ruins to active volcanoes, get off the beaten track and discover extraordinary Central America—on a shoestring. Make sure your passport has space because this exciting 32-day trip hits most of Central America as it covers tropical rainforests, volcanoes, colonial cities and all the breathtaking scenery in between. Explore indigenous Mayan villages and soak in the region's incredible culture. Our CEOs will ensure your accommodation and transportation are covered—so you can choose the activities and sights that interest you—the adventure is yours to choose!

What's Included

  • Orientation walk around Granada and Antigua, Planeterra-supported homestay experience on Ometepe and Lake Atitlan, guided tour of Tikal, Mayan Riviera beaches.
  • 2 breakfasts, 3 dinners. (Allow USD650-800 for meals not included.)
  • Simple hotels (26 nts), homestay (3 nts) and rustic ecolodge (2nts).
  • Public bus, boat, van, taxi, ferry, walking.
  • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout.
  • Small group experience; Max 16, avg 10.
Itinerary Notes

Please note that this tour has been extended by one more day in 2014. Please see trip code CRBA.

Day 1 San José

Arrive at any time.

Day 2-3 La Fortuna/Arenal

Options abound—soak in Arenal's hot springs or try some adrenaline sports like whitewater rafting or waterfall rappelling.

Day 4-5 Monteverde

Visit a cloud forest reserve, fly through the jungle canopy via a zipline or tour a coffee plantation.

Day 6-7 Ometepe (1B,2D)

Get to know our local friends during a 2-night Planeterra-supported homestay experience. Try the cuisine, test your language skills, head off to climb one of two volcanoes or visit a local swimming hole.

Day 8-9 Granada (1B)

See Granada with an orientation walk. Visit the active Masaya Volcano or kayak the isletas in Lake Nicaragua.

Day 10-11 Poneloya

Enjoy a couple of days of relaxation on a remote beach. Surfing, swimming and relaxing on the sand awaits. Opt to hike Cerro Negro or check out the city of León.

Day 12 Suchitoto

After a long day of travel via bus, boat and van, arrive to the colonial town of Suchitoto. Don't forget to eat the delicious pupusas, a local Salvadorian speciality.

Day 13-14 Concepción de Ataco

Explore the "Ruta de las Flores" area with its quaint Salvadorian towns and many artisans. Day hikes, a coffee tour and shopping are some of many options for your time here.

Day 15-18 Copán/Antigua

Visit the Mayan ruins of Copán or visit local hot springs. Explore the colonial city of Antigua on an orientation walk. Relax with a massage, visit a macadamia nut farm or soak up the culture in one of many cafés.

Day 19-20 Chichcastenango/Panajachel/Lake Atitlán (1D)

Visit the famous market of Chichicastenango en route to Lake Atitlán, where you embark on a boat ride across the lake. Test out your local language skills in a homestay with a local family at a Planterra project.

Day 21 Antigua

Take a salsa dancing lesson, hit a museum or grab a book and chill in one of the many plazas.

Day 22-24 Río Dulce/Flores

Visit coastal town of Livingston by boat or go for a swim in a natural hot waterfall. Head north and take a boat ride on Lake Petén Itzá.

Day 25-26 Tikal/San Ignacio

Learn about the Mayan culture and history on a guided tour of Tikal. Free day to visit the sacred Mayan cave Actun Tunichil Muknal, explore the Mountain Pine Ridge area or see the seldom-visited Mayan ruins of Xunantunich.

Day 27-29 Caye Caulker

Opt to snorkel with stingrays and nurse sharks at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, head out diving or just chill out, Belizean style.

Day 30-31 Playa del Carmen

Choose to explore the Mayan ruins of Tulúm or the diving mecca of Cozumel. Or play in the waves and enjoy the beach!

Day 32 Playa del Carmen

Depart at any time.