Central America consists of the countries of Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama. This area has come of age in the past 10 years and is ready to welcome travelers to its shores. A process of political, economical and cultural transformation is always ongoing in these countries and we keep up on the latest for you ~ everything from hotel openings to travel warnings.
Belize is located on the Caribbean coast, home to the second-largest barrier reef in the world. Some of the best diving and snorkeling in the Caribbean is found here, and the beaches are pristine. You can explore tropical rainforests, Mayan ruins, caves and caverns, and over 540 species of birds. There is even a jaguar reserve, the only one in the world. Eco tourism is at its best here, and accommodations include anything from a secluded mountain resort to a thatched room cabana on the beach. English is the major language, and traveling is easy!
Costa Rica is the most popular destination in Central America. This country enjoys a literacy rate of 90% and a democratic government. You can see a volcano, hike through a rainforest, go whitewater rafting, scuba dive, or simply relax on some of the most beautiful beaches anywhere. Costa Rica is home to over 800 species of birds, over 200 species of mammals, and thousands of butterflies. Most clients who visit once return again and again.
A visit to Guatemala always includes Tikal, Copan and other Mayan ruins. Indian markets are prevalent and although small, the country holds a kaleidoscope of discoveries: the Rio Dulce area, rich in natural beauty and history; the town of Livingston, with its Caribbean traditions; the charming colonial town of Antigua; the Chichicastenango Market and Lake Atitlan, and of course Guatemala City which is known for its churches and its very modern architecture. Guatemala City has renowned restaurants, great shopping, nightlife and an outstanding Mayan museum.
Nicaragua is a destination overlooked for years; however it is starting to develop its tourism infrastructure and is attracting visitors. It is the largest country in Central America, and it contains the largest freshwater body of water ~ Lago de Nicaragua. If you live on Bainbridge Island, you have heard of our sister island, Ometepe. Nicaragua has coastlines on both the Caribbean Sea and North Pacific Ocean, where its few resorts are located. Ecotourism is on the cutting edge, with hikes into Volcano Maderos on Isla Ometepe and rain forest excursions currently popular. It is becoming known for adventure travel, and we are helping clients learn about this new travel experience.
Everyone knows about the Panama Canal. It is a lifetime experience to cruise through the Canal, but Panama is so much more. It offers some of the world’s greatest ecotourism experiences with an incredible array of flora and fauna. The history and culture are fascinating. It is easy to travel independently in Panama and most Central American countries, but more and more we are seeing mainstream tour operators and more diverse ecotourism packages compiled for Panama.
When we think of South America, we think in superlatives: the biggest, the tallest, the widest.
South America consists of twelve countries, but in the travel industry we will concentrate on those that support tourism: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador & the Galapagos Islands, Peru and Venezuela.
South America is wild! This continent possesses the world’s biggest rainforest and second longest river (the Amazon), 2nd highest mountain range (the Andes), some of the world’s most remote islands (Galapagos Islands, Easter Island and Fernando de Noronha), amazing beaches (Brazil), widest deserts (Atacama), icy landscapes (Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego), as well as the tallest waterfall (Angel Falls in Venezuela) and the largest waterfall (Iguacu Falls).
Ruins of ancient civilizations (Machu Picchu and other Inca cities; the Moais on Easter Island) are prevalent and a contrast to truly world-class cities: San Paulo, Buenos Aires, Santiago de Chile and Rio de Janeiro. Indigenous culture (Belem, Manaus, Cuzco, Lima, La Paz) and Eastern culture (the enormous Japanese community in Sao Paulo) are a contrast to the modern metropolises around them. Rio’s Carnival and Belem’s Cirio de Nazare, the Tango World Championship, are also part of this very diverse continent.
Please return to this page as we describe each South American country more fully and include suggested itineraries for most areas in both Central and South America.