Central America, the mass of land connecting Mexico to South America, is a mesmerizing place jeweled with pristine beaches, beautiful islands, lush rainforests, magnificent volcanos and lively people. Surrounded by both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, the seven countries of Central America boast some of the most beautiful beaches and surfing waves in the whole world. Due to the regions disturbed history, the countries were avoided by most of the regular travelers for a long time. Only the true nomads and intrepid travelers knew to relish the untouched beauty of these secret lands. However, the secret has been out for the past few years, and tourism in the Central American countries have been booming since then. Our Central America Travel Guide will help you plan your trip to Central America, discussing the budget, food, places to see and things to do in these picturesque countries.
The Central American country of Belize is just the perfect location to spend a luxurious seaside holiday. The country is full of Mayan ruins, lush green jungles to the west, and quaint Garifuna villages. But the true beauty of this country lies with its beaches and crystal clear waters. With its miles and miles long coastline running along the beautiful Caribbean Sea, and the water dotted with hundreds of pristine cayes and abundant marine life, Belize vacations by the sea are full of fun activities and luxury. You can spend a relaxing day at the beautiful beaches, swim or snorkel through the water, dive into the water to explore the beautiful marine life or take part in various other water-activities while you spend your time in Belize. Here are few of the must-do activities which will turn your seaside Belize adventure into an absolutely perfect one.
The Central American country of Honduras has been slowly but steadily crawling out of its violent reputation and emerging as a paradise for travelers from all over the world. With its varied wildlife, abandoned Mayan ruins and beautiful national parks, Honduras is one of the best off the beaten path tourist destinations in Central America. The country is noticeably cheaper than the other destinations of Central America which makes it a great budget travel destination for backpackers. However, the low prices do not mean that Honduras has anything less for you in store. In fact, there are a lot of Honduras tourist attractions which should be counted as must visit attractions of Central America itself. To help you navigate through the lesser-known paths of Honduras, here are the top three things which you must try out when you travel to Honduras.
1. Explore the Copan Ruins
The ruins of this Mayan city is the most popular tourist attraction of Honduras. The Copan Ruins Archeological Site is, in fact, the most studies Mayan city in the whole world. Dating back nearly 2000 years, these ruins have been declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. There are a lot of things to see in this Honduras tourist attraction. Explore the stelae and altars which surround the huge plaza, stand in awe in front of the ball court, or see the longest Mayan text ever known at the Hieroglyphic Stairway. There are so much to see, that it is impossible to explore the ruins in a simple visit.
2. Visit Roatan
Roatan, the largest of the Bay Islands is also the most developed of the lot. This well-kept secret of Honduras has now become a really popular tourist spot due to its beautiful landscapes and diving opportunities. The beaches of this beautiful island especially make this destination one of the must visit Honduras tourist attractions. The West Bay Beach is particularly worth mentioning. Explore the mountainous interiors of the island, spend some relaxing days by the beach or dive into the colorful coral reefs – a trip to Roatan is must when you travel to Honduras.
3. Bird watch at Lago de Yojoa
It doesn’t matter if you are a birder or not. A trip to Lago de Yojoa should certainly be a must in your Honduras itinerary. Lago de Yojoa is the largest natural lake in Honduras, and it is just the perfect spot to watch some birds. More than 480 species of birds have been spotted in this huge lake. You can enjoy the beauty of the lake from the shore, or get into the water on a canoe. There are quite a number of hiking trails, waterfalls and even an underground cave system located in the nearby area, which you can explore. A lot of guided tours are also conducted to the nearby coffee plantations or the archeological sites. The lake also shares its borders with two national parks, namely Santa Barbara National Park and Cerro Azul Meambar National Park.
Located in Central America, Nicaragua used to be a secret destination which was famous among backpackers and intrepid travelers. Tourists used to crowd at other locations like Costa Rica or Panama, whereas the true adventure seekers used to enjoy the unspoilt beauty that Nicaragua had in store for them. However over the past years, the word got around, and Nicaragua has become one of the hottest tourist destinations in Central America as more and more people started falling in love with the country’s unspoilt beauty. With its colorful cities, relaxing beaches, beautiful hiking trails, magnificent volcanos, dense jungle, beautiful islands and extremely warm locals, there are a ton of reasons why you should pack up your bags and travel to Nicaragua. And when you do, here are the top four things which you must try out while you are there.
1. Try volcano boarding
This is one of the most unique things that you must try out when you travel to Nicaragua. Visit Cerro Negro, an active volcano in Nicaragua, hike to the top and board down the slope of the mountain. You can easily enjoy this activity by booking a trip from Leon. It is one of the main reasons why people travel to Leon, and you cannot miss the chance of enjoying this one of a kind activity when you travel to Nicaragua.
2. Swim in the Somoto Canyon
Nicaragua is a paradise for adventure lovers, and if your choices are so inclined, then visiting the Somoto Canyon is another must do activity during your Nicaragua trip. The Nicaraguan version of the Grand Canyon was only discovered in 2004. The canyon boasts of picturesque locations with turquoise waters surrounded by huge milestone cliffs. Jump into the clear blue waters from one of the shorter cliffs and take a peaceful swim through the water.
3. Enjoy surfing
Like many other Central American countries, Nicaragua also boasts some of the most amazing surfing waves. With the slow breaking waves, the Nicaraguan surfing conditions are perfect for beginners and expert surfers alike. Hitting the waves on your surfboard is a must when you travel to Nicaragua. But if you don’t know anything about surfing, don’t worry. You can easily get a surf lesson at the San Juan del Sur beach or the Las Penitas beach. The lessons are really cheap, and it’s a great way to enjoy your time on the beaches of Nicaragua.
4. Hiking trip at the Miraflor National Park
Going on a hiking trip at the Miraflor National Park will surely be one of the highlights of your Nicaraguan adventure. This beautiful park is situated in Esteli in northern Nicaragua. There are a lot of treks conducted through the park, starting from one day to multi-day trips. You will get to hike through a pristine cloud forest, visiting small local farms and exploring hidden waterfalls and rivers. Chances of encountering other tourists are extremely less, and it is truly the perfect way to get away from the city-life, immerse yourself in pure nature and give up everything else. It is one of the most beautiful experiences you will have when you travel to Nicaragua.
Panama has been serving as the heart of international shipping since the opening of the world famous Panama Canal in 1914. The ever busy connection point between the Pacific and the Caribbean also happens to be a major center for international banking. However businesses aside, Panama has also become a major tourist destination as Central America became more and more popular among travelers. Many of the tourists travel to Panama as the starting point of their Central American adventure. And the decision is also well-reasoned, as Panama holds a lot of breathtaking vistas and exciting activities in store to offer to its guests. From backpackers to family travelers, this beautiful country has something for everybody. Here are the top four things which you must try out when you travel to Panama.
1. Visit the Panama Canal
Well, it is the most obvious thing to do when you travel to Panama. Built in 1914, this 50 miles long canal acts as the passageway for ships traveling between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. There are three sets of locks used in the canal, Miraflores and Pedro Miguel Locks on the Pacific side and Gatun Locks on the Caribbean side. The Miraflores Locks are the most popular due to its close proximity to the capital Panama City. You can also take a boat ride through the waters of this magnificent canal or take a three-hour long train ride with the Panama Canal Railway to see some beautiful views of both the oceans in a single ride.
2. Explore Casco Viejo
Located just outside Panama City, Casco Viejo is the oldest city in the Americas. Walk through the red bricked streets, spend some time at the street side bars and restaurants and enjoy the beautiful Spanish styled architecture. Declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1998, the cultural and historical significance of this city makes a visit to Casco Viejo a must to activity when you travel to Panama.
3. Relax at Bocas del Toro
The province of Bocas del Toro is extremely popular among the backpackers and tourists. Especially Bocas Town, the capital of the province located off the Caribbean coast is beautiful with its crystal clear waters and beautiful beaches. Indulge in the laid-back Caribbean attitude and spend some relaxing time in the pristine natural setting. Here you will also find some of best surfing and snorkeling spots in Panama. The island’s shoreline is full with luxury shorefront or on-water accommodations, which makes it a perfect getaway destination to enjoy the beauty of the Caribbean Sea from the comfort of your own bed.
4. Take a trip to one of the rainforest parks
Panama has some of the most amazing rainforest parks for you to explore. Three of them, namely Parque Soberania, Parque Metropolitano, and Parque Chagres, are located just outside the capital, Panama City. If you want to take a break from the city-life and leave everything behind when you travel to Panama, then hike through any of these rainforest parks. You will get to spot a variety of birds and wildlife during your hike too.