Complete Guatemala

Example Itinerary

Overview

Blessed with outstanding natural beauty and perhaps one of the most culturally rich destinations in Central America, this two-week overland loop heads out from the capital to the eastern Caribbean shores of Livingston where the adventure begins slow relaxing into the beautiful ...

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Meet the Expert

Speak to Richard to start planning your trip to Guatemala

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

How Tailor-Made Works

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Discuss your initial ideas with one of our experts, the types of things you want to see and do.

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Your expert will start designing your perfect trip. Within a day or two we'll send a suggested itinerary.

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At this stage you can still tweak anything from accommodation to experiences and dates, using our expert advice.

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Time to prepare for your trip, safe in the knowledge you'll be in the expert hands of local guides and drivers throughout.

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Relax and enjoy...through our partners you'll have support on the ground as well as 24-hour emergency assistance in the UK.

Example Itinerary

This is an example itinerary. Our experts have all travelled widely in the region and will be happy to tailor any of our itineraries to suit your tastes and budget, or build a trip from scratch.

Day 1 Arrive Guatemala City

After being welcomed at the airport by your private guide and driver duo, you’ll be taken straight to your hotel in one of the city’s upmarket, residential areas nearby. Take the rest of the day to rest and settle in after your flight.

La Inmaculada

Day 2 Guatemala City – Livingston: Quirigua Ruins & Down the Rio Dulce

Reuniting with your guide and driver this morning, you’ll set off from the capital to the country’s short east coast, home to the distinct Garifuna community that settled here in the 1800s. The drive across the country and boat ride down the Rio Dulce (Sweet River) to the main port town of Livingston are broken up with a stop at the remote Mayan ruins of Quirigüa, one of only four UNESCO World Heritage sites found in the country. Spend the rest of the afternoon and evening in the colourful, dusty seaside town of Livingston, sampling the regional cuisine and relaxing into the Caribbean atmosphere.

Villa Caribe Breakfast

Day 3 Livingston: Inland Cascades & Caribbean Beaches

This morning, enjoy a walk through lush rainforest to some inland cascades forming seven freshwater pools, known as the seven alters. There’s the opportunity to swim in them for a taste of things to come at the grand Semuc Champey pools later in the itinerary. Next, head to one of the area’s protected Caribbean beaches, Playa Blanca (White Beach), named for its white, sandy shores. Lacking in infrastructure, it provides a very laid-back atmosphere from which to enjoy the shallow waters and tranquil atmosphere.

Villa Caribe Breakfast

Day 4 Livingston – Tikal National Park: Mayan Ruins Sunset

The adventure takes you deep into Guatemala’s rainforests next in the remote northeast of the country. These forests are teeming with ancient Mayan history, and the journey should see you arriving in time to enjoy a mystical sunset from atop the main pyramid at Yaxhá ruins. The scene of a warm red and orange blanket covering the dense forest canopy and glistening lagoons below before plunging the area into darkness is a sight to behold. Retire to your comfy Jungle Lodge for dinner.

Jungle Lodge Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5 Tikal National Park – Flores: UNESCO World Heritage Ruins

A very early start provides the opportunity to head to the national treasure of Tikal, the UNESCO World Heritage ruins, and to climb up one of its temples for a prime sunrise spot. After watching the sun light up the sprawling, ancient city below, head back down for breakfast to prepare you for the day’s sightseeing. A full day with the training and knowledge of your guide is invaluable in uncovering the fascinating social structures, successes and troubles faced by the empire that built this marvel - at one point the largest Mayan city in the Americas. From the Great Plaza you’ll learn about its architectural ingenuity whilst looking out for cheeky howler monkeys and the eye-catching resplendent quetzal amongst the overgrown trees. There should also be time to do an optional canopy tour through the forest trees via a series of cables (if of interest), before lunch and a transfer to your next hotel in the small lakeside town of Flores.

Hotel Bonifaz Breakfast

Day 6 Flores – San Augstín Lanquín

Beginning the journey south, today you’ll set off through steamy Guatemala rainforests to the village of San Augstín Lanquín, often referred to simply as Lanquín. This small indigenous settlement is the entry point to the striking natural landmark of Semuc Champey. The afternoon is free to enjoy some downtime after the long transfer.

Guayaha Breakfast

Day 7 Lanquin: Semuc Champey Pools & Lanquin Bat Caves

SemucChampey is undoubtedly one of Guatemala's most spectacular natural sights, with its beauty more than justifying the lengthy journey to reach it. The naturally formed limestone bridge holds a series of pristine pools that range in colour from turquoise to sapphire blue, while the RíoCahabón flows beneath it. Not only is it an impressive sight to behold, but it also makes for unique pool-side relaxation during your holiday. The pools are connected by several small waterfalls so time can be spent exploring and swimming, in addition to a hike up to a nearby lookout point for a birds-eye-view of the lush river valley. Later on, visit Lanquin’s extensive cave system. Several kilometres long and not yet fully explored, the caves here are home to unique stalactites and stalagmites, many resembling animals, and see the mass exodus of several thousands of bats on the hunt for dinner at dusk.

Guayaha Breakfast

Day 8 Lanquin – Coban: Orchids & Coffee Farms

After breakfast you’ll transfer to the peaceful heartlands around the town of Coban, a city founded by Dominicans in 1543. Surrounded by mountains and stunning natural reserves, the city lies at the heart of one of the country’s major coffee growing regions. Just outside Coban, you’ll be presented with the opportunity to see the monja blanca (white nun), Guatemala's national flower, amongst an astonishing array of prize blooms at an impressive orchid farm. The visit also includes a tour of the coffee plantation run by a small Mayan community for a lesson in small-scale coffee production and a taste of pure Guatemalan coffee. Those up for some adventure can also jump at the chance to take a zip-line across the farm and through the pine trees that have been planted around the nearby lake as part of an important reforestation project. 

Casa Duranta Breakfast

Day 9 Coban – Quetzaltenango

The drive today takes you from the country’s quiet lowlands to up to the western highlands, arriving at the bustling city of Quetzaltenango (meaning land of the quetzal bird), often referred to by its pre-colonial name of Xela (the translation references the ten mountains surrounding the town). An important city for the numerous peoples that occupied and built it, today it has a unique architectural style and atmosphere with various indigenous groups and local and foreign students.

Hotel Bonifaz Breakfast, Lunch

Day 10 Quetzaltenango – Lake Atitlan: City Tour & Downtime

Located at 2,333m, this morning you’ll have a tour of this immensely important city, once considered to be the capital of the region (some also believe the capital of the Mayas) spanning the south coast to the high plateau, and learn how its history has shaped the architecture and culture of the city today. Walk around the city’s main sights with your guide before transferring to your next hotel this afternoon, overlooking one of the continent’s most famous lakes and most certainly the country’s most iconic natural landmark, Lake Atitlán.  
*Surrounded by mountains, Quetzaltenango is also ideal for those wanting to add a bit more active time. Please feel free to speak to one of our consultants about the stunning hiking options here, if of interest.  

Villa Santa Catarina Breakfast

Day 11 Lake Atitlan: Kayaking & Hiking Around the Lake

Walking down to the lake for your boat transfer this morning, you’ll be taken to your kayak, waiting in a peaceful spot atop Atitlan’s majestic waters. A morning paddle takes you past some of the small peninsulas jutting out into the lake from which you can admire the gardens and people lining the shore. After that relaxing warm-up activity, you'll disembark the kayak onto dry land for a hike along the ancient paths of the Kaqchikel Maya to the quiet village of Tzununa on the lake’s northern side. Far less visited than the southern villages, and hardly ever reached by foot, you’ll likely pass just a few local villagers going about their daily life and some magnificent scenery during the journey. The rest of the day is then free to enjoy hotel’s pool and sumptuous views.

Villa Santa Catarina Breakfast

Day 12 Lake Atitlan – Chichicastenango – Antigua: Indigenous Market Town

Visit the highland market town of Chichicastenango, famous across the country for its authentic, indigenous market (the largest in Guatemala) and an ideal place to pick up a bargain or two amongst the colour and chaos. There will also be time to stop at the town’s St. Tomas Church to witness the unique fusion of indigenous, Mayan ceremony and Catholic faith, a fascinating centuries-old collaboration found in a few places across Latin America. After lunch, you’ll continue on to the final destination of the trip, the very pretty colonial town of Antigua.

Meson De Maria Breakfast

Day 13 Antigua: Home Cooking Class & Walking Tour

In a small village outside the town, you’ll meet a Guatemalan matriarch in her home. Proud that after years of experience she follows her heart and not recipes, she’ll teach you to prepare a traditional Guatemalan dish in her kitchen. After the morning cooking class, sit down to enjoy your homecooked meal. Saying goodbye to your host, you’ll then head back to town and work off some of your lunch during a walking tour around Antigua’s incredibly charming cobblestone streets, popping into some of the pretty, pastel-coloured buildings and churches. We recommend enjoying one of Antigua’s many excellent dining options for your final evening.

Meson De Maria Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14 Antigua – Depart Guatemala City

Depending on your departure flight, you may have a bit of leisure time in the morning before being taken back to the capital’s international airport, where your in-depth discovery of this Central American gem concludes.

Breakfast

EXAMPLE ACCOMMODATION

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Accommodation listed here is intended as a guide only, to give you a taste of what we can do. Our experts can tailor any aspect of this itinerary and accommodation to suit your budget and tastes.

WHAT'S INCLUDED

14 days from £5,365

MEALS

As specified in the itinerary, sampling some of the country's finest cuisine.

TRANSPORT

Private air-conditioned vehicles with experienced, dedicated drivers.

ENTRANCE FEES

Tours and admission fees, including tickets specified in the itinerary.

EXPERT TEAM

Licensed English-speaking guides and a support team available 24/7.

ACCOMMODATION

As specified in the itinerary, using some of our favourite local properties.

WILD MILES

This tour will earn you 10908 Wild Miles

ACCOMMODATION

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Wild Miles Club

When you book a trip with Wild Frontiers you are awarded points, which are based on the return distance from London to the arrival city of your trip. Points are awarded for all our holidays, including both our escorted group tours and tailor-made trips. When you accrue points, you will qualify for the following discounts on all future bookings:

Blue More than 10,000 points 2.5% discount
Bronze More than 30,000 points 5% discount
Silver More than 45,000 points 7.5% discount
Gold More than 60,000 points 10% discount

This itinerary is aimed to give you an idea of what we can offer. The price shown above is per person, based on two people travelling outside of peak periods. As this itinerary is only a suggestion and can be tailor-made to suit your interests and budget, your final price may differ.

Positive Impact of this Trip

Tree
Ten trees are planted per passenger on this trip
Community
Supports Wild Frontiers Foundation community projects
Wind Turbine
A contribution to renewable energy projects

WHEN TO GO

START PLANNING YOUR TRIP

Our team of experts have a wealth of knowledge and experience to help you plan your adventure of a lifetime.

WHY WILD FRONTIERS?

Meet the expert, Richard

Richard is our Latin America expert, who has travelled extensively in the region.

Speak to Richard by calling
1(833) 200-4640

Guatemala’s sublime natural beauty, pales in comparison to its cultural wealth. With more than 21 languages spoken in a country one fifth the size of France, Guatemala’s diversity is incredible.

OTHER ITINERARIES IN GUATEMALA

Check out our group tours in Guatemala

As well as private tailor-made trips, we also offer small group tours (max size 12) to Guatemala. Led by an experienced tour leader, travel with a group of like-minded people on one of our award-winning group tours.

View Group Tours in Guatemala