Belize Highlands, Islands & Tikal Ruins
Discover two of the main highlights of Belize and visit the famous ruins of Tikal in Guatemala. Uncover lush rainforests, ancient Mayan civilisations, and explore picturesque coral islands.
Formerly called British Honduras, Belize has a rich history starting with the great Maya civilization through pirates, buccaneers and slavery, to modern day independence and democracy. Explore two countries in one where you can find the unique Caribbean which is a blue-green world of picturesque mangrove and coral islands, reefs with a multitude of pristine islands with beautiful beaches as far as the eye can see. Within the jungle interior, encounter many of the ancient Maya civilization with pine-clad mountains, rivers & majestic waterfalls.
Day 1: Belize City > San Ignacio On arrival you will be met and transferred with fellow guests to your hotel in San Ignacio. This transfer is roughly 3 hours long. Spend four nights here at your choice of hotel.
Day 2: San Ignacio Visit the ancient Maya city of Xunantunich for an opportunity to view original carved monuments depicting Maya rulers and warriors in their full regalia and journey to the top of "El Castillo" to capture a panoramic view of the Belize River Valley. Then continue to Barton Creek Cave in Amish territory where you will enjoy a scenic canoe trip through the caves. Enjoy glistening crystalline formations and be awed by the Maya artefacts secretly tucked away in overhead alcoves of this subterranean caving system.
Day 3: San Ignacio Today visit Caracol which is a major and dominant site in Maya history. These impressive ruins of the expansive former city cover nearly 80 square miles and rival the ancient metropolis of Tikal in size, power and riches. The lush primary rainforest vista gives one the sense of peaceful silence interrupted only by a startled bird call or howl of a monkey. In the afternoon you will continue your exploration in the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve with sightseeing stops made at Rio Frio Cave and Rio On Pools.
Day 4: San Ignacio > Tikal National Park > San Ignacio Take a short drive to the Belize-Guatemala border for Immigration processing before heading to the majestic Tikal nestled in the dense jungles of Peten in Guatemala. At the start of the Classic Period, Tikal went to war with neighbouring Caracol, located in Belize, and was defeated. You will enjoy a 4 hour tour of the site. Included in your tour are the most important monuments such as, Complex Q, R, Temple IV, Temple III and the Main Plaza, where you will find Temples I and II, the North Acropolis and the Central Acropolis.
Afterwards return back across the border into Belize and transfer back to your hotel in San Ignacio.
Day 5: San Ignacio > Belize City > Ambergris Caye This morning travel back to Belize City and then board your domestic flight to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye for your three night stay. This charming Caribbean island has a 25-mile shoreline with sun-drenched beaches which run almost parallel to the famous Barrier Reef, less than half a mile offshore.
Day 6: Ambergris Caye - Hol Chan Marine Reserve & Shark Ray Alley A snorkelling adventure awaits you at Hol Chan Marine Reserve (Maya for "Little Channel"), the first marine reserve established in Central America. Explore the coral reefs as you swim amongst the abundant marine life. Next, you will head to your second snorkel stop, Shark Ray Alley where you will encounter friendly stingrays, inquisitive brown nurse sharks, turtles, as well as an abundance of colourful reef fish including snappers and jacks.
Day 7: Ambergris Caye Day at leisure to explore San Pedro, Ambergris Caye at your leisure. Optional activities include snorkelling at Mexico Rocks Marine Reserve, Scuba Diving & Reef Fishing.
Day 8: Ambergris Caye > Belize City This morning transfer back to the airport for your short domestic flight to Belize International Airport.
• Tailor-made journey with English speaking local guides • shared group transfers and touring • 7 nights' accommodation • sightseeing and entrance fees • National Park fees • Domestic flights: Belize City > Ambergris Caye > Belize City • 7 breakfasts and 3 lunches
Pricing (per person) $NZD
Booking conditions NOTE: Accommodation upgrades are available on this itinerary, supplements apply in high season, Easter, Christmas and other national holidays. Belize Border Crossing fee of $20.00 US per person and the Guatemala Border Crossing fee of $4.00 US per person are excluded and are payable direct.
NOTE: Accommodation upgrades are available on this itinerary, supplements apply in high season, Easter, Christmas and other national holidays. Belize Border Crossing fee of $20.00 US per person and the Guatemala Border Crossing fee of $4.00 US per person are excluded and are payable direct.