Adventurous self drive tour in Belize on the tracks of a vanished high civilization visiting major Mayan sites like Caracol or Xunantunich, Nim Li Punit, Lubaantun and world famous Tikal in Guatemala! Enjoy jungle walks into rainforest and discover its hidden treasures like mysterious cave systems, lush tropical vegetation and an abondance of wildlife. Meet local people in biggest Garifuna settlement Dangriga with its intriguing African roots and learn more about their culture and todays life style.
Pick up rental car at Crystal Rental Car head office. Self drive via Burrell Boom to Belizes most popular wildlife reserve Baboon Sanctuary where more than 1500 Black Howler Monkeys live on river banks in a jungle setting. Continue to popular Belize Zoo. It is home to more than 125 animals of about 48 species, all native to Belize. The natural environment of Belize is left entirely intact within the zoo. The dense, natural vegetation is separated only by gravel trails through the forest. Keeping to its goal of bringing visitors closer to Belize’s natural heritage, the zoo only houses native animals. Self drive on Western Highway to Cayo district and its capital San Ignacio. Overnight in San Ignacio Total km today: 160km Total driving time today: 3.5h Overnight: Hotel Cahal Pech Village 3*, cat. Junior Suite
Short drive to the border to Guatemala. Drive to the biggest ever built city of the Mayas: Tikal, where once over 50000 people lived. Walk the numerous jungle walks to discover silent witnesses in form of palaces and pyramids of this vanished high civilization. Climb the Pyramid number 4 to enjoy a breathtaking view over the endless green canopy of the rainforest. In the afternoon travel back to Belize. Overnight in San Ignacio Total km today: 225km Total driving time today: 4h Overnight: Hotel Cahal Pech Village 3*, cat. Junior Suite
Self drive on idyllic Hummingbird Highway passing by Belizes capital city Belmopan until you reach St. Herman’s Blue Hole National Park located just off the Hummingbird Highway. It is over 2 km² in area, and contains two cave systems, various natural trails, and the cool jungle pool from which the park gets its name. Inside the park, established in 1986, are two of the most amazing cave systems youll ever visit: St. Hermans Cave and the Crystalline Cave. Take a swim in the inland Blue Hole, a clear sapphire pool surrounded by sheer rock walls, hardwood trees and tangled vines, emerging from a collapsed karst sinkhole 25 feet deep. Continue travelling on Hummingbird Highway until you reach junction to Southern Highway which you follow until you see signed gravel road to Mayflower Bocawina National Park. Overnight in Dangriga Total km today: 150km Total driving time today: 3h Overnight: Hotel Bocawina Rainforest Lodge 3.5*, cat. Standard
Today you continue on Southern Highway towards Punta Gorda and Toledo district. At the Maya Center you will find the access road to the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary. Drive right into the rainforest; enjoy a hike on well marked jungle paths. Continue South and visit the small but nevertheless intriguing Mayan site of Nim Li Punit, a Maya Classic Period site and is sometimes known as Big Hat or Top Hat; the name is Kekchi Maya language for “Big Hat”, referring to the large elaborate head-dress on a stela sculpture found on site depicting one of the site’s ancient kings. It consists of structures around three plazas, including several step-pyramids, the tallest being 12.2 meters high. The site has a number of carved stelae illustrating the ancient city’s rulers. before you reach cozy Hickatee Cottages where you will stay overnight in a comfortable bungalow. Overnight in Punta Gorda. Total km today: 155km Total driving time today: 3h Overnight: Hotel Cotton Tree Lodge 3*, cat. Garden Vista Room
Visit the Maya site of Lubaantun where the famous Crystal skull was found. Situated above a tributary to the Columbia River, Lubaantun is located near the village of San Pedro Columbia. and. Lubaantun is the largest Mayan ceremonial center in Southern Belize, built in the Late Classic Period around 700-900 AD, and is well known for its unusual style of construction. It consists of 11 structures, grouped around five main plazas, all built with limestone blocks and no visible mortar binding them together! Take a side cut to San Antonio, a typical Mayan Village. Continue to Blue Creek and take a hike through the dense and fascinating jungle where you eventually reach the cave. Take a refreshing swim in one of the rock pools. Return to lodge. Overnight in Punta Gorda. Total km today: 70km Total driving time today: 2h Overnight: Hotel Cotton Tree Lodge 3*, cat. Garden Vista Room
Return on the Southern Highway to Dangriga. Once called Stann Creek town, Dangriga is the district capital and the cultural center of the Garifuna people who are the majority of a population of about 9,000. Wooden houses perched on stilts to catch the Caribbean breeze sit alongside coconut palms and mango trees giving the place a dreamy, tranquil air about it. The Garifuna Museum houses permanent displays that highlight the culture and history of the Garifuna people while the Pen Cayetano Gallery showcases the artwork of musician and painter Pen Cayetano. Other stops of cultural interest include the Drums of my Father Monument, the National Garifuna Council headquarters, Thomas Vincent Ramos Monument. Continue to Belize City and return rental car. Total km today: 295km Total driving time today: 5h
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