40 days in Central America Itinerary

40 days in Central America Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Central America trip itinerary planner

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Route & dates

40 days in Central America Itinerary

Start: Toronto, Canada
Fly + Drive:  7​h 30​min
1
Cayo, Belize
— 2 nights
Drive + Fly:  3​h 30​min
2
San Pedro, Belize
— 4 nights
Fly:  2​h 15​min
3
Roatan, Honduras
— 4 nights
+3
Fly + shuttle + foot + bus:  9​h
4
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
5
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
— 5 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
6
Monteverde, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
7
Tamarindo, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Fly:  8​h
8
Panama City, Panama
— 4 nights
Fly + Drive:  9​h 15​min
9
Tikal National Park, Guatemala
— 1 night
shuttle + Fly:  5​h 30​min
10
Antigua, Guatemala
— 2 nights
11
Copan Ruinas, Honduras
— 3 nights
Drive + Fly:  17​h 15​min
End: Toronto, Canada

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 1st (Tue): take in the exciting artwork at Sak Tunich Art Gallery. Keep things going the next day: delve into the distant past at Xunantunich and then explore the ancient world of Cahal Pech Mayan Ruins & Museum.

To see other places to visit, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Cayo trip maker tool .

Toronto, Canada to Cayo is an approximately 7.5-hour combination of flight and car. You can also do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Toronto to Cayo due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Toronto in January, expect Cayo to be warmer, temps between 32°C and 24°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Thu) early enough to travel to San Pedro.

Things to do in Cayo

Parks Historic Sites Nature
Find places to stay Jan 1 — 3:
Highlights from your plan
Barton Creek Cave ©
Barton Creek Cave
Xunantunich Mayan Ruins ©
Xunantunich Mayan Ruins
Belize Botanic Gardens ©
Belize Botanic Gardens

4
nights
San Pedro, Belize

San Pedro evolved from small fishing village and now represents one of the most visited locations in Belize.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Fishing Charters & Tours and Spas & Wellness. Step out of San Pedro to go to Caye Caulker and see Caye Caulker, which is approximately 56 minutes away. The adventure continues: relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, stop by Belize Chocolate Company, admire all the interesting features of Shark Ray Alley, and head outdoors with La Gaviota.

For more things to do, photos, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the San Pedro trip itinerary planner .

Do a combination of car and flight from Cayo to San Pedro in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of car, bus, and ferry. In January, daytime highs in San Pedro are 32°C, while nighttime lows are 24°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 7th (Mon) early enough to catch the flight to Roatan.

Things to do in San Pedro

Wildlife Tours Outdoors

Side Trip

Shark Ray Alley
Find places to stay Jan 3 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Fishing Charters & Tours
Shark Ray Alley ©
Shark Ray Alley
Belize Chocolate Company ©
Belize Chocolate Company

4
nights
Roatan, Honduras

The largest of the Bay Islands, Roatan is the most developed and the most popular among its neighbors.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Scuba & Snorkeling and Tabyana Beach. There's much more to do: stroll through Gumbalimba Park, view the masterpieces at Shawn Jackson Gallery, have unforgettable encounters with a shark diving experience, and stop by Roatan Rum Company.

To see more things to do, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Roatan trip planner .

Traveling by flight from San Pedro to Roatan takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and flight. Expect a daytime high around 32°C in January, and nighttime lows around 24°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Fri) so you can travel to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Roatan

Outdoors Parks Tours
Find places to stay Jan 7 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Tabyana Beach ©
Tabyana Beach
Carambola Gardens ©
Carambola Gardens

3
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.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Fishing Charters & Tours and Jungle Avenue. There's much more to do: let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, relax and rejuvenate at some of the top local wellness centers, identify plant and animal life at Wildlife Areas, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Parque Nahomi.

To find maps, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the Manuel Antonio tour planner.

Traveling by combination of flight and bus from Roatan to Manuel Antonio takes 9 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 15th (Tue) so you can go by car to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trip

Quepos
Find places to stay Jan 11 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Playa Manuel Antonio ©
Playa Manuel Antonio
River Rafting & Tubing
Fishing Charters & Tours

5
nights
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica

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.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges Park and Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal). There's much more to do: witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, view the masterpieces at Onirica Art Gallery, get a taste of the local shopping with Galeria Estudio, and scramble along the landscape with a canyoning and rapelling tour.

To find traveler tips, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos trip planner .

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 4.5 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Sun) to allow time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Tours

Side Trip

Arenal Volcano National Park
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
Ecocentro Danaus ©
Ecocentro Danaus

3
nights
Monteverde, Costa Rica

Monteverde ©
Monteverde is all about natural attractions, not surprising for an eco-tourism hotspot known for its cloud forests and rich diversity of animal life.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Curi Cancha Reserve and Alas y Raices. And it doesn't end there: look for all kinds of wild species at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, admire the natural beauty at Monteverde Butterfly Garden (Jardin de Mariposas), admire nature's wide array of creatures at The Bat Jungle, and kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks.

To see other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, read Monteverde trip website .

Drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Monteverde in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks Wildlife Tours
Find places to stay Jan 20 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Curi Cancha Reserve ©
Curi Cancha Reserve

3
nights
Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Tamarindo ©
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Playa Avellana and Dolphin & Whale Watching. Take a break from Tamarindo with a short trip to Playa Conchal in Playa Conchal, about 38 minutes away. There's much more to do: soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers, look for gifts at Souvenir Guanacaste, and get your game on at Bolas Locas Mini Golf.

For traveler tips, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Tamarindo trip itinerary site .

You can drive from Monteverde to Tamarindo in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a shuttle. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Panama City.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Playa Conchal
Find places to stay Jan 23 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Playa Avellana ©
Playa Avellana
Playa Conchal ©
Playa Conchal
Spas & Wellness

4
nights
Panama City, Panama

Panama City ©
Arguably the most modern of Central American cities, Panama City boasts a shimmering skyline of glass skyscrapers.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Museo del Canal Interoceanico de Panama and Bridge of the Americas. Get out of town with these interesting Panama City side-trips: Fort San Lorenzo (in Colon) and Nature & Wildlife Tours (in Gamboa). And it doesn't end there: make a trip to Panama Canal, stop by PTYlocal, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Iglesia del Carmen, and explore the ancient world of El Arco Chato.

To find where to stay, maps, ratings, and tourist information, use the Panama City trip builder website .

Do a combination of bus and flight from Tamarindo to Panama City in 8 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and flight; or drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from Tamarindo to Panama City. In January in Panama City, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 28°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 31st (Thu) so you can travel to Tikal National Park.

Things to do in Panama City

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Fort San Lorenzo, Nature & Wildlife Tours
Find places to stay Jan 26 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Panama Canal ©
Panama Canal
Casco Viejo ©
Casco Viejo
Iglesia del Carmen ©
Iglesia del Carmen

1
night
Tikal National Park, Guatemala

Tikal National Park ©
Take a trip to Tikal National Park and discover an ancient city in the thick tropical jungle.
Kick off your visit on the 1st (Fri): examine the collection at Centro de Conservacion e Investigaction and then identify plant and animal life at Cerro Biotope Cahui. Here are some ideas for day two: delve into the distant past at Tikal.

To see traveler tips, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Tikal National Park tour itinerary planner .

You can do a combination of flight and car from Panama City to Tikal National Park in 9.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight, shuttle, bus, and car; or drive. Traveling from Panama City to Tikal National Park, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Sat) to allow enough time to travel to Antigua.

Things to do in Tikal National Park

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trip

Cerro Biotope Cahui
Find places to stay Jan 31 — Feb 2:
Highlights from your plan
Cerro Biotope Cahui ©
Cerro Biotope Cahui
Tikal ©
Tikal

2
nights
Antigua, Guatemala

Antigua ©
The former capital of Guatemala and a World Heritage Site, Antigua retains its colonial charm and remains one of the most visited destinations in the country.
On the 3rd (Sun), stop by Jade Maya - The Original Jade factory and Museum and then contemplate the geological forces at Volcán Pacaya. On the 4th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: savor the flavors at Food & Drink, delve into the distant past at Convento Santa Clara, then stop by La Casa del Algodon, and finally get engrossed in the history at Casa del Jade.

For photos, ratings, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Antigua sightseeing tool .

Traveling by combination of shuttle and flight from Tikal National Park to Antigua takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, flight, and shuttle; or drive. In February, plan for daily highs up to 28°C, and evening lows to 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 5th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Antigua

Parks Nature Museums

Side Trip

La Azotea
Find places to stay Feb 2 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Volcán Pacaya ©
Volcán Pacaya
Convento Santa Clara ©
Convento Santa Clara
Casa del Jade ©
Casa del Jade

3
nights
Copan Ruinas, Honduras

Copan Ruinas ©
The colorful, cultural town of Copan boasts attractions old and new, manmade and natural.
Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 6th (Wed): steep yourself in history at Mayan Ball Court, then don't miss a visit to Main Square, and then experience rural life at Finca el Cisne.

For traveler tips, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, you can read our Copan Ruinas vacation planning tool .

Traveling by shuttle from Antigua to Copan Ruinas takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or drive. Traveling from Antigua in February, plan for somewhat warmer nights in Copan Ruinas, with lows around 19°C. On the 8th (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Copan Ruinas

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife
Find places to stay Feb 5 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Copan Ruinas ©
Copan Ruinas
Sepulturas ©
Sepulturas

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