21 days in Central America & Caribbean Itinerary

21 days in Central America & Caribbean Itinerary

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Route & dates

21 days in Central America & Caribbean Itinerary

Start: Dublin, Ireland
+3
Fly + shuttle + foot + ferry:  19​h
1
Caye Caulker, Belize
— 1 night
+3
ferry + foot + bus + Drive:  4​h 45​min
2
Cayo, Belize
— 2 nights
Drive + Fly:  6​h 30​min
3
Guatemala City, Guatemala
— 2 nights
4
San Jose, Costa Rica
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
5
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
6
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
— 2 nights
Fly:  8​h 30​min
7
Panama City, Panama
— 1 night
Fly:  4​h
8
Havana, Cuba
— 3 nights
Fly:  15​h
End: Dublin, Ireland

1
night
Caye Caulker, Belize

Caye Caulker ©
At just under 8 km (5 mi) long and 1.6 km (1 mi) wide, the limestone coral island of Caye Caulker offers a small but perfectly formed getaway 32 km (20 mi) offshore from Belize City.
On the 4th (Sun), discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour, look for all kinds of wild species at The Estuary of Caye Caulker, and then explore the gorgeous colors at Shark Ray Alley. Keep things going the next day: step off the mainland to explore Caye Caulker.

For maps, traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Caye Caulker trip planner .

Dublin, Ireland to Caye Caulker is an approximately 19-hour combination of flight and ferry. You can also do a combination of flight, shuttle, and ferry. You'll gain 6 hours traveling from Dublin to Caye Caulker due to the time zone difference. Plan for warmer temperatures traveling from Dublin in August, with highs in Caye Caulker at 37°C and lows at 30°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Mon) early enough to travel to Cayo.

Things to do in Caye Caulker

Wildlife Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Shark Ray Alley
Find places to stay Aug 4 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Shark Ray Alley ©
Shark Ray Alley
Scuba & Snorkeling

2
nights
Cayo, Belize

Cayo ©
Holidays in Cayo offer adventure and history in equal measure, with a wealth of ancient sites and unspoiled environment to explore.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Tue): make a trip to House of Culture and then steep yourself in history at Xunantunich. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 7th (Wed): explore the world behind art at Tanah Mayan Art Museum, take in the exciting artwork at Sak Tunich Art Gallery, and then explore the ancient world of Caracol.

To see photos, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Cayo attractions tool .

Getting from Caye Caulker to Cayo by combination of ferry, bus, and car takes about 5 hours. Other options: do a combination of ferry, flight, and car. In August, daily temperatures in Cayo can reach 37°C, while at night they dip to 30°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 7th (Wed) early enough to travel to Guatemala City.

Things to do in Cayo

Historic Sites Museums Shopping
Find places to stay Aug 5 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Xunantunich Mayan Ruins ©
Xunantunich Mayan Ruins
Caracol ©
Caracol
Sak Tunich Art Gallery ©
Sak Tunich Art Gallery

2
nights
Guatemala City, Guatemala

Guatemala City ©
The largest city in Central America and the country's capital, Guatemala City contains historic sights and modern businesses.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Volcán Pacaya and Casa Santo Domingo Museums. Get out of town with these interesting Guatemala City side-trips: Antigua (Iglesia de San Francisco El Grande, Volcan de Agua, & more). There's still lots to do: explore the world behind art at Palacio Nacional, admire the landmark architecture of National Palace of Culture, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at La Merced.

To find more things to do, photos, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Guatemala City tour itinerary site .

You can do a combination of car and flight from Cayo to Guatemala City in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and flight; or drive. In August, Guatemala City is slightly colder than Cayo - with highs of 30°C and lows of 19°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Sat) so you can travel to San Jose.

Things to do in Guatemala City

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trip

Antigua
Find places to stay Aug 7 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Volcán Pacaya ©
Volcán Pacaya
Iglesia de La Merced ©
Iglesia de La Merced
Casa Santo Domingo Museums ©
Casa Santo Domingo Museums

2
nights
San Jose, Costa Rica

San Jose ©
A trip to San Jose, the capital, commercial center, and cultural hub of Costa Rica, gives you a chance to experience the lively atmosphere and rich cultural past of this vibrant country.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Sun): explore the world behind art at Museo de Arte Costarricense, look for all kinds of wild species at Toucan Rescue Ranch, then see the interesting displays at Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, and finally pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia La Soledad. Here are some ideas for day two: take a memorable drive along Top Travel Costa Rica, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Metropolitan Church (Catedral Metropolitana), then take an in-depth tour of Jade Museum, and finally take in the exciting artwork at Galeria Namu.

To see more things to do, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, use the San Jose trip builder website .

Traveling by flight from Guatemala City to San Jose takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In August in San Jose, expect temperatures between 32°C during the day and 22°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Mon) early enough to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums Wildlife Outdoors

Side Trip

Toucan Rescue Ranch
Find places to stay Aug 10 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Top Travel Costa Rica ©
Top Travel Costa Rica
Toucan Rescue Ranch ©
Toucan Rescue Ranch
Galeria Namu ©
Galeria Namu

3
nights
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica

La Fortuna de San Carlos ©
Set against the backdrop of the imposing Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna de San Carlos offers visitors a chance to explore diverse natural landscapes and sample some delicious local produce.
Visiting Tabacon Hot Springs and Proyecto Asis will get you outdoors. Spend the 15th (Thu) spotting exotic species with a safari tour. There's still lots to do: admire the sheer force of El Canto Waterfall, look for all kinds of wild species at Costa Rica Dog Rescue & Adoption, and admire the natural beauty at Arenal Natura Ecological Park.

To see maps, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, read La Fortuna de San Carlos trip planner .

Getting from San Jose to La Fortuna de San Carlos by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 15th (Thu) so you can go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Wildlife Parks Outdoors
Find places to stay Aug 12 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Proyecto Asis ©
Proyecto Asis
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
Safaris

2
nights
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

Manuel Antonio ©
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Fri): identify plant and animal life at Wildlife Areas and then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Manuel Antonio. Here are some ideas for day two: delve into the lush surroundings at Naturalist Michael Araya Flores.

For photos and other tourist information, refer to the Manuel Antonio online tour planner .

You can drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Manuel Antonio in 4.5 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel to Panama City.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Wildlife Tours

Side Trip

Mike’s Nature Tours
Find places to stay Aug 15 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Playa Manuel Antonio ©
Playa Manuel Antonio
Nature & Wildlife Tours

1
night
Panama City, Panama

Panama City ©
Arguably the most modern of Central American cities, Panama City boasts a shimmering skyline of glass skyscrapers.
On the 18th (Sun), identify plant and animal life at Punta Culebra Nature Center, then get engrossed in the history at Museo del Canal Interoceanico de Panama, and then get to know the fascinating history of Casco Viejo. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Metropolitan National Park, don't miss a visit to Panama Canal, and then appreciate the extensive heritage of Avenida Balboa.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, read Panama City online trip planner .

Do a combination of bus and flight from Manuel Antonio to Panama City in 8.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. The time zone changes from Central Standard Time (CST) to Eastern Standard Time (EST), which is usually a 1 hour difference. In August, daytime highs in Panama City are 36°C, while nighttime lows are 29°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Mon) to allow enough time to travel to Havana.

Things to do in Panama City

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Parks
Find places to stay Aug 17 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Panama Canal ©
Panama Canal
Casco Viejo ©
Casco Viejo
Metropolitan National Park ©
Metropolitan National Park

3
nights
Havana, Cuba

Havana ©
Cuba's capital and major commercial center, Havana manages to be very old and very modern at the same time.
El Malecon and Fortaleza de San Carlos de la Cabana are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Next up on the itinerary: get to know the fascinating history of Old Havana, contemplate the long history of El Morro, admire the masterpieces at Museu Nacional de Belas Artes de Cuba, and take an in-depth tour of Museum of the Revolution (Museo de la Revolucion).

For where to stay, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Havana trip planner .

Traveling by flight from Panama City to Havana takes 4 hours. Traveling from Panama City in August, Havana is slightly colder at night with lows of 26°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Thu) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Havana

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Aug 19 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Old Havana ©
Old Havana
Malecón of Havana ©
Malecón of Havana

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