The Maya World - Guatemala and Honduras
£3,445 excl. flight
- Maya mega-cities of Copan and Tikal
- Lake Atitlan and the living Maya culture
- Behind the scenes access at Copan
This tour traces a great triangle through the spectacular Maya World. Beginning with ancient Takali’k Abaj, cradle of the Maya empire, head to impressive Copan, the Athens of the Maya world, before culminating with Tikal. Along the way this tour visits some of Central America’s most scenic locations and explores the rich and vivid Maya culture, ancient and modern.
Day 1 London/ Guatemala City, Antigua – On arrival transfer to colonial Antigua.
Day 2 Antigua - Meet community guides who will offer insights into local textiles and fair trade coffee cooperatives.
Day 3 Antigua, Takali’k Abaj – Drive to Takali’k Abaj, a major Maya centre of commerce, which saw the early development of the Maya calendar and hieroglyphic writing.
Day 4 Quetzaltenango, Lake Atitlan – Explore highland Quetzaltenango (Xela), considered by some to be the ‘capital of the Maya’. Then continue your journey to Lake Atitlan
Day 5 Lake Atitlan – The lake is surrounded by villages in which the Maya culture is still prevalent and traditional dress is still worn. Full day boat tour visiting San Juan and Santiago villages.
Day 6 Lake Atitlan – Day at leisure to enjoy the beautiful surroundings.
Day 7 Iximche, Antigua – Visit the palaces and temples at Iximche, an important highland Maya ceremonial site, and experience a traditional shaman ritual. Afterwards, transfer back to Antigua.
Day 8 Copan - Drive to Copan (Honduras), considered by many to be the most spectacular ancient Maya city. This evening you will dine in the home of renowned archaeologist David Sedat. After dinner David will give a presentation on his groundbreaking archaeological work in the site of Copan.
Day 9 Copan – Full day exploring the site of Copan with David Sedat. David will unlock the mysteries of this ancient Maya site, famous for its intricately-carved stelae, archaeological tunnels and excellent museum.
Day 10 Copan, Livingston – Visit Quirigua for the tallest stone sculptures ever erected in the New World. Travel on by boat along the Caribbean coast to the port of Livingston.
Day 11 Livingston – Day at leisure to relax in Livingston.
Day 12 Lake Peten Itza - A boat trip through Rio Dulce Canyon, then drive to Lake Peten Itza, with a visit to the Classic Maya site of Yaxha at sunset.
Day 13 Uaxactun, Tikal - Travel via the ruins of Uaxactun to Tikal, pinnacle of the Maya Empire. Explore Tikal’s towering temples, royal palaces, pyramids and platforms.
Day 14 Tikal, Antigua – Morning at leisure before flying back to Guatemala City, and on to Antigua by road. Afternoon at leisure.
Day 15 Guatemala City/ Madrid – Fly back to London, via Madrid.
Day 16 Madrid/ London - Arrive in London.
Dr Nicholas James
Nicholas James is a consultant in management and interpretation of historical resources. Inspired by their resilience through five centuries of confrontation with outsiders, he has studied the history, archaeology and anthropology of the Native peoples of Mexico and Central America for 35 years.
His book Aztecs & Maya is a general reader’s introduction to their story ancient and modern. He also has research projects in England and India. Dr James teaches in Cambridge and London and has lectured in Mexico. He is also an avid exponent of adult education; and a seasoned tour director.
If you like this tour but our specific tour dates don't suit you we can arrange the same itinerary or similar on a tailor-made basis, please contact us to discuss.