Guatemala & Nicaragua: Mystic Route
17 days / 16 nights
Begins at Guatemala International Airport and ends at Managua International Airport.
Visit Antigua Guatemala, Isla de Flores, La Carmelita, El Mirador, El Tintal, Tikal; Volcanoes Cerro Negro, Rota, Telica, Masaya and Mombacho; León, Granada, Ometepe Island.
Become a true pioneer exploring the hidden routes of Guatemala and Nicaragua; destinations filled with magic, unparalleled human warmth, natural, historical and cultural wealth. These countries welcome you with stunning landscapes, beautiful colonial cities and indigenous culture where art and ancient traditions will become treasures that you will keep for life.
- Explore the archaeological sites of El Tintal and El Mirador.
- Immerse yourself in the heart of the Mayan jungle.
- Reach the highest Mayan pyramid in the world, La Danta.
- Visit the mythical Mayan city of Tikal, a World Heritage Site.
- Climb 6 volcanoes in Nicaragua, including one of the youngest and most active volcanoes in the world.
- Enjoy beautiful landscapes and starry skies during camping nights.
- Visit an island formed by 2 volcanoes, located in the largest lake in Central America.
DAY 01 Guatemala – Antigua
Welcoming at La Aurora International Airport to the land of Magic, Color and Adventure! Upon arrival, transfer to Antigua Guatemala.
DAY 02 Antigua – Airport – Flores
After breakfast, our guide will meet you in the lobby. We will take a brief tour in tuc tuc (covered motorcycles), to Cerro de la Cruz, where we will walk to the top to appreciate one of the most beautiful panoramic views of Antigua Guatemala, its volcanoes and mountains.
We will continue the visit with a walking tour of Antigua’s main attractions: the Central Park, the Portal de las Panaderas, the Fountain of the Siren, the City Hall building, the facade of the Royal Palace, the Cathedral and its ruin. We will cross the Arch of Santa Catalina and visit the church and the convent of La Merced.
After lunch, transfer to La Aurora International Airport where you will take the flight to El Petén, Heart of the Mayan World. Upon arrival we will wait for you at the airport to take you to your hotel in Flores Island.
DAY 03 Flores – La Carmelita – El Tintal (17 Km Trekking)
Today we will star our adventure to El Mirador, one of the greatest legacies of the Maya Civilization. Here you will find La Danta Complex, one of the most representative architectural works of the Preclassic period. It is characterized by its majesty, antiquity and dimensions. La Danta (300 B.C) is the tallest Mayan pyramid in the world. It measures 170 meters high and is taller than the Cheops of Egypt.
Departure at 6.00 am to La Carmelita community where we will have a traditional breakfast. At 10 am we will start with the walk to El Tintal, where we will camp for the night.
Note: This trail is operated by people of the Carmelita Cooperative, a traditional community from Petén that works on the sustainable extraction of chewing gum, xate and other forest products. This community was established more than 60 years ago.
DAY 04 El Tintal – La Muerta – El Mirador (23 Km Trekking)
After an early breakfast at 6.00 am we will start the walk to El Mirador. At 3:00 pm we will visit the archaeological site “La Muerta” and finally we will arrive at the camp at “El Mirador”. We will see the sunset from the El Tigre pyramid that has 60 floors and a height of more than 55 meters, being the second highest in the complex.
DAY 05 El Mirador
After breakfast we will take a tour of the city center to observe the temples. Many archeologists speculate that El Mirador was the first major organized settlement of the ancient Maya. After lunch we will take a tour to the great pyramid “La Danta”, which has a height of 18 floors, being the highest pyramid discovered so far in the Mayan world, with a base of 18,000 square meters. Dinner and accommodation at El Mirador.
DAY 06 El Mirador – El Tintal (23 Km Trekking)
After breakfast we will start our walk back to El Tintal. We will have lunch in the “El Zompopero” rest area, arriving at our destination at approximately 4.00 pm
DAY 07 El Tintal – La Carmelita (17 Km Trekking) – Flores
Breakfast at the El Tintal Archaeological Site. Walk to La Carmelita community. We will take lunch in the community and then we will leave to Isla de Flores.
DAY 08 Flores – Tikal – Flores – Guatemala City
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer in regular services to Tikal National Park, declared by UNESCO “Cultural and Natural Heritage of Humanity”.
Tikal is one of the most important urban centers of the Mayans, with its palaces, temples, stelae and stone altars. The mapped area has 16 km. with more than 4,000 buildings. We will experience its cultural, artistic, architectural and astronomical development generated for 1,500 years. Lunch at the El Mesón Restaurant, inside the National Park. Transfer to Flores. At night, transfer by bus from Flores to Guatemala City.
DAY 09 Guatemala City – Airport – Managua – León
Transfer to the Airport to take the flight to Managua, Nicaragua. Reception upon arrival at the airport. Transfer to the city of León, founded in 1610. Time at leisure
DAY 10 León – Cerro Negro Volcano – Rota Volcano (Camping 726M / Trekking 5HRS)
Today our adventure of climbing 3 volcanoes in 3 days begins! You will explore some truly iconic sites of Los Maribios volcanic chain.
This morning we meet our team during breakfast and we will have an informative session about the challenge that awaits us. Then we’ll go to Cerro Negro Volcano Nature Reserve, the starting point of our challenge. Cerro Negro is one of the youngest and most active volcanoes on earth. This volcano formed 160 years ago and has erupted 18 times since then. After Cerro Negro, we have lunch and prepare to walk again towards our camp in the community of Rota.
DAY 11 Rota Volcano (Camping 832M / Trekking 6 HRS)
After breakfast, we will continue the adventure following another path to Rota volcano, which has a 1-km-wide circular crater and is located between Cerro Negro volcano and Telica volcanic complex. Several families have settled on the slopes around this volcano because of the tranquility. You will have a good chance to meet some of them while enjoying a good cup of coffee.
DAY 12 Telica Volcano – León (1061M / Trekking 6HRS)
In a 4×4 vehicle we will travel through small rural villages, mainly on unpaved roads for 1 hour until we reach the slope of Telica volcano. From this point, we begin to walk through a tropical dry forest to the crater, where volcanic activity is evident throughout the year. Seeing the crater walls rising from long distances is impressive. From the top you will enjoy a panoramic view of the Pacific coast and Los Maribios volcanic chain with 5 of the 7 active volcanoes of Nicaragua. After lunch we will continue down for 4 more hours following a single path in the opposite direction, passing near another volcano and clay potholes towards the community of San Jacinto, where they will pick us up to travel back to your hotel in León.
DAY 13 León – Masaya Volcano – Granada
Departure to Granada after breakfast. On route we will visit the Masaya Volcano National Park. A paved road takes us to the edge of the impressive and active Santiago crater. We will continue to Granada, the oldest colonial city in the western hemisphere of the Americas that still remains in its original place of construction. The city was founded in 1524 on the shores of Lake Cocibolca.
DAY 14 Granada – Mombacho Volcano – Ometepe Island
On our way to San Jorge port, we will visit Mombacho Volcano Nature Reserve. We will go from the dry tropical forest region, through coffee farms, entering the cloud forest. When we reach the top, we will walk the path of 01 km, along which we will discover an unusual collection of orchids, ferns, butterflies and birds.
Departure to San Jorge to take the ferry to Ometepe Island. Formed by two majestic volcanoes, Concepción and Maderas, Ometepe Island was named a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 2011 due to its diverse habitats and dazzling variety of wildlife. The island is also known for its archeology pieces and pre-Columbian art.
DAY 15 Ometepe Island
Breakfast at the hotel. You can choose one of these tours:
- Hike to Maderas Volcano: 8-hour hike with a high level of difficulty as the humidity transforms the trail into a muddy and slippery path. We will arrive to the lagoon located in the extinct crater of the volcano. The views during the hike are limited as you pass through the misty forest, with tree branches covered with bromeliads and lichens. You will hear birds and howler monkeys hiding in the vast forest.
- San Ramon waterfall & Ojo de Agua: San Ramon is a gorgeous 50-meter waterfall on the southern slope of Maderas volcano. A clearly marked trail takes you through dense jungle, passing by old trees covered in moss, vines and bromeliads. You might see howler monkeys, birds, butterflies and other insects. Upon reaching the waterfall you can take a swim in the small natural pool of the waterfall. Then, we will continue to Ojo de Agua, two natural swimming pools filled with thermal spring water from an underground well.
DAY 16 Ometepe Island – Managua
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to the port to take the ferry back to San Jorge. Transfer to your hotel in Managua.
DAY 17 Managua – Airport
Transfer to Managua International Airport according to your flight’s departure time. We recommend being at the airport 02 hours earlier.
- Air transfer Guatemala City – Flores.
- Land transfer in private services. Vehicle with A/C Flores – La Carmelita – Flores.
- Land transfer in regular services. Pullman Bus with A/C Flores – Guatemala City.
- Private transportation in vehicle with A/C in Nicaragua.
- Ferry San Jorge – Ometepe Island – San Jorge.
- 01 night in Antigua Guatemala / Standard Room
- 02 nights in Isla de Flores / Standard Room
- 04 nights in the Mayan Jungle / Camping
- 01 night on the Bus from Flores to Guatemala City
- 02 nights in Leon / Standard Room
- 02 nights at the Volcanoes / Camping
- 01 night in Granada / Standard Room
- 02 nights in Ometepe / Standard Room
- 01 night in Managua / Standard Room
- Daily breakfast
- 09 lunches
- 07 dinners
- Walk in the jungle for 5 days from La Carmelita Community to El Mirador and return.
- Logistics for camping, food throughout the journey (starting with the welcome breakfast in Carmelita and ending with the closing lunch in Carmelita). Support staff during the expedition. Guide, muleteers, cook, load mules. Complete camping equipment, water, First Aid Kit.
- Visit to Tikal National Park (excursion shared with other travelers). Transportation, bilingual guide -English-, admission and lunch inside the park.
- Trekking and camping: Volcanoes Cerro Negro, Rota and Telica.
- Visit to the Masaya Volcano National Park.
- Visit the Mombacho Volcano Nature Reserve.
- Hike to Maderas Volcano or Hike to San Ramón Waterfall and Ojo de Agua.