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18 year old girl travelling to Central America?

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I am eighteen years old. I am planning on taking a trip for about two weeks to Central America this summer. I want to keep the total cost for my trip (airfare included) around $1500. The two places that I have been looking at travelling to are Guatemala and Mexico. Which is better/safer? I'm extremely nervous about going on this trip especially because I will be alone. I have taken five years of Spanish.

While in Central America I really wish to see Mayan ruins and explore some of the older towns of the areas. What is the best way to do this? It would be so helpful if someone could provide me with an itinerary of sorts as well as safe travel tips.

One website I found suggested staying for two nights in Zona Viva in Guatemala City and visiting museums and the historic centers of the town, but I keep reading about how dangerous this city can be.. Any help is greatly appreciated!

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