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World of the Maya

Duration
10 Days
Prices From:
US$ 3,008

The World of the Maya has many faces crossing many countries: El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, and Belize. Join this journey of discovery through the heart of Mayan civilization.


El Salvador and Guatemala make fascinating visits on their own. Why not combine them, with a stop in neighbouring Honduras along the way? Spend 10 days discovering the breathtaking ruins and rainforests of Central America.

Take a day trip from San Salvador to visit three amazing volcanoes that loom over the western part of the country. Go on to Joya de Ceren, a pre-Columbian Maya farming village, preserved under volcanic ash. Think of it as Central America’s Pompeii! The nearby colonial town of Suchitoto continues your immersion in the vibrant history of this region.

Follow the Flower Route, a coffee plantation area packed with colourful markets and towns on your way to Imposible National Park. This incredible gorge and forest is El Salvador’s most bio-diverse wilderness. After a taste of the country’s natural wonders, take a tour of El Boqueron, crater of the San Salvador Volcano. While you’re back in the capital, a tour takes you through the downtown, including the National Cathedral, National Palace and National Theatre.

Close to the Guatemalan border, Copan is Honduras’ most famous ruins site, sometimes referred to as a ‘more interesting’ Chichen Itza with fewer tourists! Catch a flight from Guatemala City to more famous Tikal, the crown jewel of Central America’s Mayan ruins. A guided tour takes you to the highlights, but do take a moment to stand in the Great Plaza and be taken back in time as the 70 metre high temples tower over you.

One of the oldest cities in the Americas, Antigua is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an ideal base for exploring many of Guatemala’s most famous sights. This was the colonial capital of Central America and a guided tour gives you an insight into that heritage. Spend a day roaming Chichicastenango Market, renowned for its beautiful traditional Mayan textiles. And surrounded by mountains over 2 kilometres above sea level, hunting for bargains has never looked more spectacular. Your last stop is the Lake Atitlan. Surrounded by spectacular volcanoes, it was once described by Aldous Huxley once said of Atitlan as “really is too much of a good thing.”


At Goway we are experts at designing personalized itineraries to suit your special interests, tastes and budget. Let us arrange your ultimate travel experience today.
Duration
10 Days
Prices From:
US$ 3,008

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

San Salvador

You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel in San Salvador City. Depending on your arrival time, a city tour can be arranged (own expense).

Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Barcelo San Salvador

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    Barcelo San Salvador



    Welcome to the Barcelo San Salvador hotel, conveniently located within the business district of San Salvador and only 45 minutes from El Salvador International Airport. Enjoy easy access to numerous city and state government offices and many popular local attractions.

    Welcome to the Barcelo San Salvador hotel, conveniently located within the business district of San Salvador and only 45 minutes from El Salvador International Airport. Enjoy easy access to numerous city and state government offices and many popular local attractions.

    Facilities

    • Conference Facilities
    • Pets Accepted
    • Restaurant
    • Spa
    • Swimming Pool

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Day 2

San Salvador - Boqueron - Joya de Ceren - Suchitoto

At 8:00 AM, you will depart to El Boqueron for breakfast in a beautiful restaurant with many types of flowers. El Boqueron is the name of the crater of San Salvador Volcano. Locals say that it has this name since the crater resembles a big mouth. At approximately 1700 meters above sea level, it provides a cool climate. You will be able to easily walk to the edge of the crater and admire its beauty.

Then you will continue to Joya de Ceren, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1993. This agricultural community was buried by the ashes of Volcano Caldera back in 600 AD for which it is also known as the "Pompeii of the Americas", even though no bodies were found, a sign that inhabitants received prompt warning of the eruption. Thanks to the excellent preservation, this site allows you to witness the everyday lives of the Mesoamerican agricultures of such time period; you can witness their homes, beds, crop fields and even saunas. This makes it a unique place within the Maya World. There is also a comprehensive museum on site.
Its name means the place of the Flower Bird. You will walk along the charming cobblestone streets surrounded by lovely old colonial homes. Suchitoto is home to Santa Lucia Church, built in 1853, majestically situated in the town's central square. Lunch at a charming boutique hotel.

After lunch, you will experience an Indigo Workshop. Indigo is a natural colorant extracted from the Xiquilite plant. It was a very important element for the Mayans since they used it for magical/religious rituals, as a medical plant, for pottery and for painting. When the Spanish "Conquistadores" arrived to El Salvador in 1524, Indigo became the new source of wealth in the region. Pedro de Alvarado noticed how the Indians used several shades of blue in their clothes. In 1558, the Habsburg King Charles I ordered the territories of Guatemala and Cuscatlan (El Salvador), to produce indigo for Spain. The commercial route was through Granada, then to Cartagena de Indias from where it travelled to Spain. In the XVII century the ounce of indigo was as valuable as gold. Today you can visit "xiquilite" plantations in El Salvador and discover the indigo process. El Salvador indigo, has always been recognized as top quality worldwide. You will learn the process of indigo as well as art techniques used on clothing as they experiment in designing their own scarf.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Los Almendros de San Lorenzo

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    Los Almendros de San Lorenzo



    Almendros de San Lorenzo is located in the colonial town of Suchitoto, Almendros de San Lorenzo is located in the colonial town of Suchitoto, overlooking Suchitlan Lake, 1 hour from San Salvador. The hotel occupies an old colonial house with 12 comfortable rooms and suites. ...

    Almendros de San Lorenzo is located in the colonial town of Suchitoto, Almendros de San Lorenzo is located in the colonial town of Suchitoto, overlooking Suchitlan Lake, 1 hour from San Salvador. The hotel occupies an old colonial house with 12 comfortable rooms and suites. The hotel is also a collection of antiques, modern art, a private library with piano, classical patio with large corridors, tropical garden with swimming pool and gourmet restaurant.

    Facilities

    • Bar(s)
    • Library
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant(s)

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Day 3

Volcanoes National Park - Flower Route

At 8:00 AM, you will head to Volcanoes National Park. El Salvador is the country with more volcanoes per square kilometers in the world. This is because there are many volcanoes in a very small country of only 20,000 square kilometers. In Volcanoes National Park, three amazing volcanoes (Izalco Volcano, Santa Ana Volcano and Cerro Verde) embrace beautiful Coatepeque Lake which fills a crater of another volcano. Izalco Volcano is one of the youngest volcanoes in America, since it was born in the 1700's, whereas Santa Ana Volcano is thousands of years old.

Izalco Volcano was known as the "Lighthouse of the Pacific" since its lava guided the ships on the Pacific Ocean Coast. No lava is currently flowing, but both volcanoes are still active since constant fumaroles are present. In Cerro Verde, located in the middle of the other two volcanoes, you will walk around its extinct crater providing breathtaking views of Izalco and Santa Ana Volcanoes and Coatepeque Lake. A typical world-famous pupusas lunch will wait for us at Cerro Verde.

As an option, you may choose instead to hike one of the volcanoes along with experienced local guides. Izalco Volcano is a cone shaped volcano made up of sand and lava rock creating a challenging but rewarding hike. Once at the summit, you will be able to walk around the crater experiencing the warm fumaroles and the amazing views. With a personal and experienced guide, the total hike takes about 5 hours. The other option is Santa Ana Volcano. This volcano provides a different hike since it is a more solid and massive body. Once at the top, this volcano offers the view of Coatepeque Lake as well as the sulfur green lagoon inside the crater. Total hike takes about 4 hours. On a clear day, even the ships on the Pacific Ocean can be seen. In the afternoon you will depart to The Flower Route. Check in at a Mountain Lodge within coffee plantations.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Hotel Santa Leticia

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    Hotel Santa Leticia



    Santa Leticia is a mountain lodge located on the Flower Route, 1 hour 15 minutes from San Salvador. The lodge is characterized by its excellent service and quality. It is surrounded by coffee plantations and it has its own archaeological site. It has very comfortable ...

    Santa Leticia is a mountain lodge located on the Flower Route, 1 hour 15 minutes from San Salvador. The lodge is characterized by its excellent service and quality. It is surrounded by coffee plantations and it has its own archaeological site. It has very comfortable weather due to the altitude. Therefore, no AC is needed in the rooms. Hotel Santa Leticia features a restaurant, a bar/lounge, Wireless internet access at lobby and dining room. Recreational amenities include 2 swimming pools and a ropes course.

    Facilities

    • Bar(s)
    • Conference Facilities
    • Gift Shop
    • Playground
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant(s)

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Day 4

Coffee Tour, Towns and Crafts

The Flower Route is a coffee plantation area in the Western side of El Salvador. It is composed of 4 main towns and it has a comfortable weather due to the altitude. The towns are Nahuizalco, Juayua, Apaneca, and Ataco. The region offers amazing views of mountains and volcanoes. The region offers crafts, coffee tours, charming towns, markets, and adventure options.

You will visit a coffee plantation and if the tour is done within coffee season (DEC-MAR), you will be able to collect coffee themselves along with the locals. For local people, picking coffee provides them an economic benefit and it is an activity done as a family. After this experience, a guided tour will explain each step of the coffee process after the grain is taken to the "beneficio" (mill). Travelers will be able to buy coffee products and crafts as souvenirs. You will enjoy lunch in a charming restaurant of the area. After lunch we will depart to Copan, Honduras (3-4 hours). You will cross two borders in order to reach Copan. First you will cross El Salvador/Guatemala border and the next will be Guatemala/Honduras border. Copan is a charming small town located about 15 kilometers from the Guatemala border.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Hotel Marina Copan

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    Hotel Marina Copan



    The hotel has been at the heart of the Copan "experience" since 1945, overlooking the Central Plaza in the charming town of Copan Ruinas, Honduras. The Marina Copan Hotel was named in honor of Dona Marina Welchez, and built on the site of her family ...

    The hotel has been at the heart of the Copan "experience" since 1945, overlooking the Central Plaza in the charming town of Copan Ruinas, Honduras. The Marina Copan Hotel was named in honor of Dona Marina Welchez, and built on the site of her family home nearly 60 years ago. A Copan tradition, the original Marina Copan Hotel has been home to generations of Maya investigators and enthusiasts.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Conference Facilities
    • Internet Access
    • Parking
    • Restaurant
    • Sauna
    • Spa/Jacuzzi
    • Swimming Pool

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Day 5

Copan Archaeological Site

At 8:30 AM, you will start your exploration of Copan Ruins: The Paris of the Mayans and one of the most distinguished cultural monuments in the world. In 1980, Copan Archaeological Park was declared a World Heritage Site. Mayan Influence is seen starting at around 300 A.D. By 400 A.D. it became one of the most important Mayan cities in Mesoamerica, developing its own art and architecture. Arguably, Copan is the most beautiful Mayan City. It doesn't have the verticality of Tikal or the huge buildings of Uxmal or Palenque, but each stone of Copan reveals the majesty of the rulers and the skills of the craftsmen. A local guide will travel with you and explain the history behind all the temples, sculptures, hieroglyphics and tunnels. Then you will return to Copan Town for lunch. At the afternoon, free time to enjoy the charming town of Copan.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Day 6

Guatemala to Flores

This morning, check out and head to Guatemala City (5 hours).

Guatemala's capital city is the most modern and cosmopolitan city in Central America. Fast paced and vibrant, Guatemala City (or Guate as it is know locally) is a wonderful blend of old and new and possesses a distinct Latin charm. Nowadays, Guatemala City has two million inhabitants. You will have a quick lunch and then transfer to airport for the flight to Flores.

You will be met at Flores airport and transferred to your hotel.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Hotel Peten

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    Hotel Peten



    Hotel Petén is located on the island of Flores, which makes it a very convenient base for trips to Tikal and other area attractions in Guatemala's Petén region. The hotel features 21 single, double and triple rooms and all rooms are air-conditioned and have private ...

    Hotel Petén is located on the island of Flores, which makes it a very convenient base for trips to Tikal and other area attractions in Guatemala's Petén region. The hotel features 21 single, double and triple rooms and all rooms are air-conditioned and have private bathroom, cable TV and phone. The hotel also features a swimming pool, Jacuzzi, restaurant, and bar. The indoor and outdoor restaurant serves local and international cuisine.

    Facilities

    • Bar(s)
    • Conference Facilities
    • Internet Access
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant(s)
    • Spa(Hot-tub)/Jacuzzi

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Day 7

Tikal to Guatemala City

You are now in the area of Peten, where you will experience the greatness and splendor of the Mayan Civilization. Today you will visit Tikal, which means "place of voices".

Tikal is currently the largest known and studied Mayan City. The entire park has an extension of 576 square kilometers. UNESCO established it as a World Heritage site in 1979. Tikal is the highest point of the Mayan Civilization; when visiting the main square, one is powerfully moved by its majesty. The vertical dimension of the pyramids is impressive as well. During this tour, you will explore its main temples (such as the Big Jaguar Temple built around 700 A.D. reaching an altitude of 45 meters above the main square) and plazas along with a local and knowledgeable guide.

You will enjoy lunch on site. After lunch, you will transfer to FRS airport for departure flight to Guatemala City. You will be received at Guatemala City airport and transferred to hotel.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Real Intercontinental

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    Real Intercontinental



    Ideally located adjacent to Central America's largest mall, the Real Intercontinental is connected by a pedestrian overpass to MetroCentro. In the heart of the business and entertainment district the hotel has 204 Hilton Rooms, 54 Executive Rooms, 7 Suites, and offers direct access to the ...

    Ideally located adjacent to Central America's largest mall, the Real Intercontinental is connected by a pedestrian overpass to MetroCentro. In the heart of the business and entertainment district the hotel has 204 Hilton Rooms, 54 Executive Rooms, 7 Suites, and offers direct access to the airport. Enjoy the award winning restaurants such as Tanoshii Sushi Bar, Tequilas Bar & Botanas, Vertigo Bistro & Bar and Faisca do Brasil.

    Facilities

    • Bar(s)
    • Internet Access
    • Laundry/Dry Cleaning Service
    • Parking
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant(s)
    • Sauna
    • Spa

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Day 8

Chichicastenango - Panajachel - Antigua

Today, head to the Guatemalan Highlands, a region with invaluable cultural richness offering many options to immerse you on the Mayan Legacy. Arrive at Atitlan Lake at 1500 meters above sea level. A natural fram is formed by three volcanoes. Beyond the natural beauty of the lake, on its shores lie a dozen of indigenous villages of prehistoric origin where life has changed little or not at all over the centuries. The people who inhabit these towns give life and spirit to the lake where much of the Maya culture remains intact. Take a tour to visit some of these towns. Later, have lunch at Panajachel.

Alternately, you may choose to visit the Maya Market in Chichicastenango (Thu-Sun).

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Posada de Don Rodrigo Antigua Guatemala

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    Posada de Don Rodrigo Antigua Guatemala



    Hotel Posada de Don Rodrigo is a restored antique colonial house, 200 metres from Antigua Guatemala Cathedral. The colonial-style rooms have wooden furniture and original lamps and ceilings.Room service is available from the hotel's bar and à la carte restaurant. Packed lunches can be requested. ...

    Hotel Posada de Don Rodrigo is a restored antique colonial house, 200 metres from Antigua Guatemala Cathedral. The colonial-style rooms have wooden furniture and original lamps and ceilings.Room service is available from the hotel's bar and à la carte restaurant. Packed lunches can be requested. A massage service is offered for an extra charge. The hotel has 24-hour reception and a tour desk. Laundry services are also available.

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Day 9

Antigua Guatemala - Chichicastenango Markets - Panajachel

Start exploring Antigua this morning.

Antigua was the third capital city established by the Spaniards. It was founded in 1543. In 1773, it was completely destroyed by an earthquake. Even though a new capital was established at a different location, people slowly started to give life back to Antigua, which is now one of the main attractions of Guatemala due mainly to its colonial architecture where it seems like time has stopped. Antigua is located at the Panchoy Valley and is surrounded by three volcanoes and mountains with coffee plantations. With its cobblestone streets, it provides a marvelous setting for cultural and religious traditions. A gem of urban planning and colonial architecture, Antigua's features have been well preserved. Because of its immense historical and cultural value, UNESCO named Antigua a World Heritage site in 1979.

After lunch, explore the town at your own leisure.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Day 10

Antigua Guatemala - Guatemala City - Onward travels

After check out you are transferred to Guatemala City Airport for your onward travels.

Meal Plan Breakfast

Other Information

DEPARTURES: 

Wednesday and Saturday with a minimum of 2 passengers. 

PRICE INCLUDES:

9 nights accommodation, transfers, tours, private vehicle and driver, private English speaking guides, 8 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches and all taxes. 

PRICE EXCLUDES:

  • International and domestic flights and airport taxes
  • Travel insurance
  • Transfers on days before or after official start / end days
  • Tours listed as optional
  • Drinks and items of a personal nature

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:

Prices are "from", per person, based Twin share. Other accommodation options available on request and subject to availability. 

TB GREENBLSAN15SG: GMW C 2
30 Dec 2017
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