31 days in Central America & Mexico Itinerary

31 days in Central America & Mexico Itinerary

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Route & dates

31 days in Central America & Mexico Itinerary

Start: Sydney, Australia
Fly:  23​h 15​min
1
Roatan, Honduras
— 4 nights
ferry:  1​h 15​min
2
Utila, Honduras
— 1 night
Fly:  3​h 15​min
3
San Pedro, Belize
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
4
Belize City, Belize
— 2 nights
Fly:  4​h
5
Playa del Carmen, Mexico
— 5 nights
+4
Fly + foot + bus + foot + bus:  6​h 15​min
6
Antigua, Guatemala
— 1 night
+4
bus + foot + bus + foot + Fly:  13​h 15​min
7
Bocas Town, Panama
— 1 day
Fly:  2​h 15​min
8
Panama City, Panama
— 4 nights
Fly:  6​h 30​min
9
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
10
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
Fly:  27​h
End: Sydney, Australia

4
nights
Roatan, Honduras

The largest of the Bay Islands, Roatan is the most developed and the most popular among its neighbors.
For shopping fun, head to Diamonds International or Shawn Jackson Gallery. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Little French Key and Tabyana Beach. There's lots more to do: discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour, take a memorable tour with Tours, meet some fierce fish with a shark diving experience, and kick back and relax at West Bay Beach.

To see reviews, maps, ratings, and other tourist information, read Roatan trip planner.

Sydney, Australia to Roatan is an approximately 23.5-hour flight. You'll gain 16 hours traveling from Sydney to Roatan due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Sydney in April, things will get a bit warmer in Roatan: highs are around 36°C and lows about 27°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Mon) so you can travel to Utila.

Things to do in Roatan

Outdoors Wildlife Tours
Highlights from your plan
Shark Diving
West Bay Beach ©
West Bay Beach
Little French Key ©
Little French Key

1
night
Utila, Honduras

The island of Utila has become known as a good place to learn how to dive in Latin America.
Start off your visit on the 5th (Tue): kick back and relax at Bando Beach, stroll through Iguana Research & Breeding Station, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas.

To find ratings, where to stay, traveler tips, and other tourist information, you can read our Utila driving holiday planning tool .

You can ride a ferry from Roatan to Utila in 1.5 hours. In May, plan for daily highs up to 36°C, and evening lows to 26°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Tue) to allow time to fly to San Pedro.

Things to do in Utila

Outdoors Wildlife Parks
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Iguana Research & Breeding Station ©

2
nights
San Pedro, Belize

San Pedro evolved from small fishing village and now represents one of the most visited locations in Belize.
On the 6th (Wed), indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas, stop by 12 Belize, and then take a memorable tour with Tours. On the 7th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: explore the galleries of Belizean Arts, then explore the gorgeous colors at Shark Ray Alley, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas.

To find more things to do, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the San Pedro online itinerary planner .

Traveling by flight from Utila to San Pedro takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and ferry. In May in San Pedro, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 30°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 7th (Thu) so you can go by car to Belize City.

Things to do in San Pedro

Wildlife Outdoors Tours

Side Trips

Scuba & Snorkeling, Shark Ray Alley
Highlights from your plan
Fishing Charters & Tours
Shark Ray Alley ©
Shark Ray Alley
Spas

2
nights
Belize City, Belize

Belize's biggest urban center, Belize City is a culturally diverse seaside destination.
On the 8th (Fri), look for gifts at Diamonds International, get to know the resident critters at The Belize Zoo, and then get interesting insight from Tours. Here are some ideas for day two: browse the different shops at Downtown plaza and then take a memorable tour with Tours.

To find ratings, where to stay, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Belize City journey planning app .

You can drive from San Pedro to Belize City in 2.5 hours. In May in Belize City, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 30°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Sat) so you can travel to Playa del Carmen.

Things to do in Belize City

Adventure Outdoors Tours

Side Trip

The Belize Zoo
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Zipline
Diamonds International ©
Diamonds International

5
nights
Playa del Carmen, Mexico

The tourist hub of the popular Mayan Riviera, upscale Playa del Carmen remains the jewel of Mexico's Caribbean coastline.
Visiting Playa Delfines and Santa Rosa Wall will get you outdoors. Head to BALAM Art Painted on Feathers and La 5ta Haciendafor plenty of shopping. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Playa del Carmen: Scuba & Snorkeling (in Puerto Morelos), Gran Cenote (in Tulum) and Punta Sur (in Isla Mujeres). There's much more to do: see the vivid underwater world at Palancar Reef, take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports, admire the masterpieces at 3D Museum of Wonders, and take in the dramatic natural features at Columbia Reef.

To find reviews, photos, maps, and other tourist information, read our Playa del Carmen trip itinerary planner.

You can fly from Belize City to Playa del Carmen in 4 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or drive. Traveling from Belize City to Playa del Carmen, you'll lose 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Plan for a bit cooler nights when traveling from Belize City in May since evenings lows in Playa del Carmen dip to 25°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Antigua.

Things to do in Playa del Carmen

Parks Wildlife Nature

Side Trips

Cozumel, Gran Cenote, Playa Delfines, Punta Sur, Ek Balam
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Palancar Reef ©
Palancar Reef
Santa Rosa Wall ©
Santa Rosa Wall

1
night
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.
Kick off your visit on the 15th (Fri): take in the spiritual surroundings of Colegio de San Jeronimo, then make a trip to The Plaza Central Park, then see the interesting displays at ChocoMuseo, and finally delve into the distant past at Arco de Santa Catalina.

For ratings, traveler tips, reviews, and other tourist information, you can read our Antigua attractions planning tool .

You can do a combination of bus and flight from Playa del Carmen to Antigua in 6.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Playa del Carmen to Antigua due to the time zone difference. Plan for slightly colder temperatures traveling from Playa del Carmen in May, with highs in Antigua at 31°C and lows at 19°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Fri) to allow time to travel to Bocas Town.

Things to do in Antigua

Historic Sites Museums
Highlights from your plan
Arco de Santa Catalina ©
Arco de Santa Catalina
ChocoMuseo ©
ChocoMuseo
The Plaza Central Park ©
The Plaza Central Park

1
day
Bocas Town, Panama

The colorful and relaxed Bocas Town has a welcoming atmosphere, with the modestly sized urban area showcasing typical Caribbean clapboard houses and home to a mixed community from across the world.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Sat): have fun and explore at Plastic Bottle Village and then get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

For ratings, maps, more things to do, and tourist information, use the Bocas Town trip builder .

Traveling by combination of shuttle, flight, bus, and ferry from Antigua to Bocas Town takes 13.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and flight; or do a combination of bus, car, and ferry. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from Antigua to Bocas Town. Traveling from Antigua in May, expect nights in Bocas Town to be somewhat warmer, around 26°C, while days are a bit cooler, around 26°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Sat) early enough to travel to Panama City.

Things to do in Bocas Town

Wildlife Outdoors Tours
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Plastic Bottle Village ©
Plastic Bottle Village

4
nights
Panama City, Panama

Panama City ©
Arguably the most modern of Central American cities, Panama City boasts a shimmering skyline of glass skyscrapers.
Head to Multiplaza Pacific and Albrook Mallfor some retail therapy. Step off the beaten path and head to Avenida Balboa and Panama La Vieja. There's still lots to do: take a stroll through Cinta Costera, see the interesting displays at Biomuseo, take an in-depth tour of Museo del Canal Interoceanico de Panama, and explore the activities along Gatun Lake.

For other places to visit, maps, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Panama City online road trip planner .

Getting from Bocas Town to Panama City by flight takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of ferry, bus, and flight; or do a combination of ferry and bus. When traveling from Bocas Town in May, plan for a bit warmer days in Panama City, with highs around 36°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 29°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Wed) early enough to travel to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Panama City

Shopping Historic Sites Neighborhoods
Highlights from your plan
Multiplaza Pacific ©
Multiplaza Pacific
Cinta Costera ©
Cinta Costera
Avenida Balboa ©
Avenida Balboa

4
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 Zipline and Playa Biesanz. Visiting Fishing Charters & Tours and Kayaking & Canoeing will get you outdoors. Change things up with these side-trips from Manuel Antonio: Horseback Riding Tours (in Esterillos Este) and Adrenaline & Extreme Tours (in Jaco). There's lots more to do: glide peacefully along the water with some of the best stand-up paddleboarding in the area, get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, and browse the exhibits of The Captain's Booty.

To find other places to visit, reviews, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Manuel Antonio day trip planning tool .

Traveling by flight from Panama City to Manuel Antonio takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 1 hour traveling from Panama City to Manuel Antonio. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Tours Adventure

Side Trips

Quepos, Jaco, Horseback Riding Tours
Highlights from your plan
Playa Biesanz ©
Playa Biesanz
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Fishing Charters & Tours

4
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.
Step off the beaten path and head to River Rafting & Tubing and Ecotermales Fortuna. Escape the urban bustle at Tabacon Hot Springs and Rio Celeste. There's still lots to do: hike along Arenal Natura Ecological Park, trot along with a tour on horseback, scramble along the landscape with a canyoning and rapelling tour, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Proyecto Asis.

To see more things to do, reviews, maps, and other tourist information, read our La Fortuna de San Carlos trip builder tool .

Traveling by car from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 28th (Thu) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trip

Rio Celeste
Highlights from your plan
Arenal Natura Ecological Park ©
Arenal Natura Ecological Park
River Rafting & Tubing
Proyecto Asis ©
Proyecto Asis

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