Tikal Day Trip HELP!

Old Mar 14th, 2004, 06:50 PM
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Tikal Day Trip HELP!

I would like to know If a left early in the morning from San Ignacio, is it possible to take a day trip to Tikal in Guatemala. Is this safe? Will a rental car be able to cross the border? Are the roads well maintained? What precautions should I take while travelling through the jungle. Will I need to use the little spanish skills that I have to get around? Please Help! I need all the information I can get.
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Old Mar 14th, 2004, 06:55 PM
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I must add, I will be traveling with a group of about eight, and two are in their mid seventies. Can this be a trip for the less adventurous?
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Old Mar 14th, 2004, 06:59 PM
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One more thing I forgot to add. Is this a national monument protected by the government. Is there a fee?
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Old Mar 15th, 2004, 06:16 AM
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Yes, you can easily do a day trip to Tikal. Tikal park is about 1 1/2 hours by road from San Ignacio. Many tour operators in the San Ignacio area offer day trips to Tikal for around US$85 a person. TYou can also go by bus or collective.

Most car renters in Belize do not permit their vehicles to be taken into Guatemala. One exception is Crystal, and I think also Safe Car Rental in San Ignacio. The road to Flores/Tikal is partly paved, partly not. It's not bad this time of year.

Yes, this is national park and a world heritage site. An amazing one. There's an entrance fee, (US$8?) and most people get a guide. There is also a US$18.75 exit fee leaving Belize. You may be hit up for a contribution by the Guatemala officials.

Yes, you will need Spanish in Guatemala.

Tikal is a must if you are in western Belize. It's not like a stroll around the block, but it's suitable for anyone able to walk some distance.

--Lan Sluder
www.belizefirst.com
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Old Mar 15th, 2004, 10:49 AM
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thanks lan, you are a great help. But may I ask, is crystal car rental realiable, and just as good as an international company such as budget?
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Old Mar 15th, 2004, 02:20 PM
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It's a moot point as Crystal is one of only a few local rental agencies that will allow you to cross the border with the vehicle. and even then the car will not be insured.
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Old Mar 16th, 2004, 07:50 AM
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Just wanted to second the opinion that Tikal is stunning and well worth the trip.

This is just my opinion, but consider getting a bus or tour so that someone else can do the driving. Our rental car was prohibited from crossing the border, which is just as well. We parked in the nice parking lot on the Belize side, walked across the border, and negotiated a minibus on the Guatemala side for around $60 US (I think).

Driving on unpaved roads, dodging potholes and various obstacles can get tiring (again, just my opinion).

While Tikal is not strenuous in itself (you can choose to climb some of the structures), you do want to have the energy to walk through and do a good tour. Also by the time we were done, we were pretty pooped and glad we could just rest on the drive back.
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Old Mar 16th, 2004, 11:01 AM
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Essie, did the minibus cost 70 dollars per person or for the group
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Old Mar 16th, 2004, 05:49 PM
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It was $60 for the trip, not per person. I can't recall exactly, but the minivan could have fit at least 4 passengers, maybe 6.

There were only two of us, and there were no other Tikal tourists at the border or we would have tried to share wtih them too. But I don't know if the quoted price goes up depending on the number of people standing there.

Good luck!
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Old Mar 18th, 2004, 03:49 PM
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Thanks for the help Essie
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