Smoking volcanoes spin by as a sea of Mayan weaving lurches from one side of the chicken bus to the other. With the Mayan majority on constant display, dramatic geography, and prices a student could love, for some, Guatemala is the quintessential Central American experience. One of its mandatory stops, incredible Antigua Guatemala, was once the capital of an enormous swath of the Americas. Frozen in time for centuries thanks to repeated earthquakes, today it has been impeccably restored in all its rubble and glory ... not to mention it's the best traveller's hub from here to Cuzco. From crater lakes to the ruins of Tikal, it's a miracle Guatemala is still off the radar for so many. Let's hope it stays that way.
Backroads of Central America (CRBR)
Take the road less travelled through Central America with other travellers your own age—so you can be sure to get down with other adventurers that’ll keep up. This is one of our most exciting trips, filled with breathtaking scenery—from tropical rainforests alive with jungle melodies to colonial cities bouncing to a decidedly more human beat. You'll blaze your own path as you discover a region of volcanoes, craters, beaches and lush forests. Sticking to budget accommodation and public transport will keep costs down and you rooted in local life.
Highlights: Connecting with your hosts in an Ometepe homestay experience, laughing with the locals during a journey on a chicken bus, blissing out on a stretch of remote Nicaraguan beach, strolling through Antigua's colonial streets, exploring Mayan ruins, hiking through a cloud forest, sampling local cuisine.
Best of Central America (CRBO)
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!
Highlights: 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.
From the lush cloud forests of Costa Rica to the evocative cobblestoned streets of Antigua, get off the tourist track and discover the colour and spirit of Central America. Discover ancient Mayan ruins at Copán and visit small villages for insight into the region's vibrant culture. Explore the volcanoes and jungle surrounding Ometepe Island and unwind on the white sand beaches of Roatán. With its combination of included activities and countless thrilling options, this trip offers you the chance to personalize your adventure into something special.
Highlights: Hike through the mist of a cloud forest, explore Mayan ruins of Copán, dine with a local family in their home in Nicaragua, peer over the crater of Masaya Volcano, chill on a Caribbean island's beaches