Best of Belize & Guatemala??

Old Sep 8th, 2010, 04:56 PM
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Best of Belize & Guatemala??

I am going to Belize and Guatemala in 3 weeks and looking to track down the best of the best in these areas. Any amazing beaches along the shores of Belize. Rad hikes in Guatemala? Where should I spend more time?

Thanks guys!!!!
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Old Sep 8th, 2010, 08:48 PM
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Hi, there! Belize and Guatemala combine well. It would help if you told us your general budget level and the time of year you plan to travel. You can see a lot of cool things in 3 weeks but you'll have to miss a lot, too, so knowing what your priorities are would help, too. Also, do you have your flights already? Flying into 1 country and out of the other?

If you fly into Guatemala you could do a few days in Antigua and part of a week on Lake Atitlán, fly to Flores and sleep in the park at Tikal for a night or 2, head east into Belize, stopping in the San Ignacio area for a few nights in order to take in the ATM cave, then finish with some island time on Caye Caulker or Ambergris Caye. You might have time for Hopkins Village, too.

Lots of recommendations and photos here:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/staceyholeman/collections

The blogs and detailed travelogues are linked on the main page of each collection. Happy trails!
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Old Sep 9th, 2010, 04:51 AM
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We did a split between a jungle lodge in the San Ignacio area and then time on Ambergris - good combo of jungle and ruins with beach time and snorkeling. Tikal in Guatemala is very impressive.
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Old Sep 9th, 2010, 05:11 AM
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Excellent suggestions above. The beach at Placencia far outstrips that at Ambergris. The New River/Lamanai day trip is fun, too.
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Old Sep 9th, 2010, 05:18 AM
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How long do you have? What airports are you using? What is your budget?
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Old Sep 12th, 2010, 04:58 AM
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We have used Old Town Outfitters in the past for hikes in Guatemala. Last year we hiked to the Earth Lodge from Antigua and spent the night. It was a great hike although our guide was on the watch for bandits..That of course may have changed by now. We also used Old Town in the past for a long bike ride that ended up at the lake. It was great and they had a picnic lunch for us on the way. The ride is mostly downhill but still a lot of fun.
We also hiked (I think it was called Elephant Mountain) I could be wrong from Santiago. The best part of the hike was our guide who wore the most beautiful handmade pants embroidered with different birds.
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Old Sep 13th, 2010, 11:45 AM
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I completely agree with VolcanoGirl. I think that while in Belize you should experience both sides of the "Belizean Coin", so to speak. The best way to do so is by visiting both the inland and island. There are many resorts which partner with each other to offer Rainforest and Reef Itineraries which can be customized to your liking in order to enhance your experience.

Tikal is definitely one of Guatemala's highlights so it is recommendable that you visit that majestic archaeological site.
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Old Sep 17th, 2010, 01:12 PM
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Have you heard of the company Quetzaltrekers? http://www.quetzaltrekkers.com/guathome.html I have ALWAYS wanted to do one of these, and have heard nothing but good things. I'm also partial to the Lago de Atitlan area. I stayed in San Marcos at Aaculaax (totally uniquely designed hotel http://www.aaculaax.com/01-hotel/en-aaculaax.html ) for a few days and loved it. Casa del Mundo, which is built right into a cliff a little ways away, is also amazing http://lacasadelmundo.com/hotel.htm.

You should also check out the Rio Dulce. Tortugal http://tortugal.com/hotel near Fronteras and Casa Rosada http://www.hotelcasarosada.com/e/home.htm in Livingston are both great choices.

If you go to Antigua, Guatemala, sign up for the Volcan Pacaya day trip. Bring marshmallows, chocolate, and graham crackers to roast a s'more on the lava! (I got way too into my s'more making, and melted the soles of my boots right off, so be careful!)
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