Capital Cities of Mesoamerica - El Salvador, Honduras & Guatemala

8 days / 7 nights from San Salvador to Guatemala City
guaranteed and daily departures with 2 passengers only

Day 1: San Salvador - Joya de Cerén - San Salvador (El Salvador)
In the morning you meet with your guide at the reception of your hotel. We start our trip with a city tour in San Salvador. Among other important monuments we visit the National Palace and the National Museum of Anthropology. This museum houses an impressive collection of pre Colombian antiquities from the Pre classic era (1500 BC-250 AD). Later we leave the capital towards Joya de Ceren (closed on Mondays). This archaeological site, which is also called the Salvadorian "Pompeii", was inscribed in the UNESCO World heritage list in 1993 because of the completeness of the evidence that it provides of everyday life in a Mesoamerican farming community of the 6th century. The pre Hispanic farming community was buried under a volcanic eruption in AD 590. The ash preserved the personal belongings of the inhabitants until today. In the afternoon we drive back to San Salvador. Overnight in San Salvador.

Day 2: San Salvador - Tazumal - Cihuatán - Suchitoto
On our way to Suchitoto we visit the Mayan ruins of Tazumal, which are considered to be the most important and best preserved in the country. Highlight of this excavation site is a life size, stone carved sculpture of the Nahua-God. Through beautiful landscape we drive towards Suchitoto but before arriving we tour Cihuatán, a relatively unknown archaeological site. It is believed that this site had been inhabited in the early post classic. An artistic reconstruction of the site shows a city with wall all around, with a pyramid, squares and minor structures, the figurines with wheels at Cihuatán, are testimony of the great imagination of the Mayas. It is one of the few complexes that have the ball game area almost restored. There is still time to explore the charming village of Suchitoto. Overnight in Suchitoto.

Day 3: Suchitoto - Tegucigalpa (Honduras)
In the morning we leave Suchitoto and drive to Tegucigalpa, where we arrive in the afternoon. The origin of Honduras' capital dates back to the 16th century and is linked to the discovery of silver deposits in the surrounding areas. This colonial and mining past is still palpable in the historic centre. Tegucigalpa is also Honduras' cultural and intellectual centre. There are numerous institutions dedicated to the conservation and dissemination of art and national patrimony, parallel to exhibiting works of international artists. Depending the time we spend on the way and the border we visit some parts of Tegucigalpa in the afternoon. Overnight in Tegucigalpa.

Day 4: Tegucigalpa - Comayagua - Cerro Azul Meambar National Park
After breakfast we transfer to Lake Yojoa, driving through fascinating landscapes in Honduras. On the way, we visit the ancient capital Comayagua with its colonial heritage and a small historic museum. The church of the Immaculate Conception, known as the Cathedral, houses one of the oldest clocks in America, which dates from AD 1100. Before we arrive at Cerro Azul Meambar National Park, looming over the eastern side of Yojoa Lake, we visit the impressive Pulhapanzak Waterfalls, which has been an important ceremonial and cultural site for the Maya. The region around Yojoa Lake is rich in different habitat types and home or temporal host to a huge amount of migratory birds. Overnight at Cerro Azul Meambar Visitor's Centre.

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Day 5: Cerro Azul Meambar National Park - Copán Ruinas
The visitor's centre is located at 850m a.s.l. at the entrance to the national park and the unspoiled rain forest. Visitors in good condition can hike to the interchange zone between the tropical rainforest and the cloud forest enjoying impressive views of the lake. Many birds, such as toucans, oriels, motmots, parakeets and parrots live in the park. After an early nature observation hike we pack and drive to Copán Ruinas. Enjoy the beautiful countryside as we travel to the picturesque village of Copán. During the 4-hours transfer learn about Mayan trade routes, social and political organization as well as theories on their mysterious demise. After the arrival you have enough time for a stroll through the romantic colonial town. 2 overnight in Copán Ruinas.

Day 6: Copán Ruinas
Today we visit the legendary Archaeological Park of Copán Ruins, which consists of two main sites: the ruins and the sepulchers. The Maya developed into the New World's most sophisticated ancient civilization, a society of scientists, skilled architects and sculptors, fierce warriors and a ruling class that raised enormous temples to honour the lives and achievements of their kings. Representing the southeast limit to the spread of the Maya world, the city-state of Copán became the Maya's crowning artistic achievement, the cultural apex of the Maya civilization. Leader among all Mayan cities in terms of quantity and quality of stone sculpture, it has been dubbed the Athens of the New World. Appreciate to its full the significant number of ruins surrounded by giant trees that provide shades all over the site. In the afternoon we take a deeper look at the "Sepulturas", a residential and burial site of the Mayan nobles.

Day 7: Copán Ruinas - Guatemala City (Guatemala)
Today we cross the nearby border to Guatemala and transfer to Guatemala City. With 4.1 million people living in the metropolitan area, Guatemala City is the largest urban agglomeration in Central America. Although it is often describes as noisy and polluted (the same can be said of other big cities all over the world), it is at the same time a fascinating city with excellent dining and entertainment options as well as beautiful surroundings. Bordered by a lake, forested mountains, and four volcanoes, it has its own special charm. And it is the real cultural capital of Guatemala - the writers, the thinkers, the artists mostly live and work here. Overnight in Guatemala City.

Day 8: Guatemala City
Today we tour Guatemala's capital visiting the historic centre with the Metropolitan Cathedral, which was completed in 1868 after 86 years of construction, and the National Palace of Culture. This former presidential palace is a large, green stone structure with elements of colonial and neoclassical architecture. There is also time for a visit to the National Museum of Ethnology and Archaeology or the Ixchel Museum of Indigenous Dress. The National Museum of Ethnology and Archaeology houses an important collection of archaeological Mayan artifacts and traces indigenous history over the centuries. The Ixchel Museum is one of Guatemala's most popular museums. It is dedicated to Mayan culture with an emphasis on weaving and traditional costumes and houses a collection of textiles from approximately 120 indigenous communities. On time you are transferred to Guatemala airport for your international departure flight. Alternatively you are transferred to your hotel for another overnight in Guatemala City. End of our services.

Remarks:
* For a small additional charge we transfer you back to San Pedro Sula.
* You can book this tour in the opposite direction without additional costs. You can also extend or shorten it or propose program changes.
* A great option to extend the tour is a visit to the colonial gem Antigua and the beautiful Lake Atitlan.

 

Services Included
7 nights lodging incl. breakfast
Mesoamerica bilingual guide
Entrances and local guides according to itinerary
Transfers in A/C vehicle according to itinerary
Local taxes
Prices valid until 16.12.2017
Price Per Person
2 persons U$ 1745.-
3 persons U$ 1379.-
4 persons U$ 1229.-
5 persons U$ 1099.-
6 persons U$ 965.-


Wholesalers and Retailers please ask for special conditions.