30 days in Central America & Mexico Itinerary

30 days in Central America & Mexico Itinerary

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Route & dates

30 days in Central America & Mexico Itinerary

Start: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Fly:  8​h 45​min
1
Panama City, Panama
— 5 nights
Fly:  2​h 15​min
2
San Jose, Costa Rica
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
3
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
— 5 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
4
San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
5
Granada, Nicaragua
— Few hours
+2
shuttle + Fly + shuttle:  6​h 15​min
6
Antigua, Guatemala
— 4 nights
shuttle + Fly:  7​h
7
Cancun, Mexico
— 6 nights
Fly + bus:  5​h 15​min
8
San Cristobal de las Casas, Mexico
— 1 night
bus + Fly:  5​h 30​min
9
Mexico City, Mexico
— 4 nights
Fly:  13​h
End: Buenos Aires, Argentina


5
nights
Panama City, Panama

Panama City ©
Arguably the most modern of Central American cities, Panama City boasts a shimmering skyline of glass skyscrapers.
Casco Viejo and Gatun Locks are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Museo del Canal Interoceanico de Panama and Museo Panama Viejo will appeal to museum buffs. Spend the 26th (Fri) exploring nature at Metropolitan National Park. There's lots more to do: don't miss a visit to Panama Canal, hunt for treasures at Mercado de Mariscos, get to know the fascinating history of Avenida Balboa, and take in the architecture and atmosphere at Iglesia del Carmen.

To find reviews, traveler tips, where to stay, and more tourist information, read Panama City trip maker website .

Buenos Aires, Argentina to Panama City is an approximately 9-hour flight. The time zone changes from Argentine Time (ART) to Eastern Standard Time (EST), which is usually a -2 hour difference. When traveling from Buenos Aires in January, plan for somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in Panama City: temperatures range from 38°C by day to 26°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Sun) so you can travel to San Jose.

Things to do in Panama City

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trip

Gatun Locks
Find places to stay Jan 23 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Casco Viejo ©
Casco Viejo
Gatun Locks
Gatun Locks

1
night
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.
Kick off your visit on the 28th (Sun): admire the masterpieces at Precolumbian Gold Museum, then browse the exhibits of Galeria Namu, then get engrossed in the history at National Museum (Museo Nacional), and finally look for gifts at Chieton Moren. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 29th (Mon): steep yourself in history at Our Lady of the Angels Basilica (Basilica de Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles) and then relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour.

To see photos, where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, read San Jose trip itinerary planner .

You can fly from Panama City to San Jose in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of train and bus. The time zone difference when traveling from Panama City to San Jose is minus 1 hour. In January, San Jose is slightly colder than Panama City - with highs of 30°C and lows of 22°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 29th (Mon) so you can travel to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums Adventure Outdoors

Side Trip

Our Lady of the Angels Basilica (Basilica de Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles)
Find places to stay Jan 28 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Galeria Namu ©
Galeria Namu
River Rafting & Tubing
National Museum (Museo Nacional) ©
National Museum (Museo Nacional)

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.
Get outdoors at Tabacon Hot Springs and River Rafting & Tubing. Spend the 31st (Wed) among the fascinating landscape of Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal). Spend the 2nd (Fri) exploring nature at Parque Nacional Volcan Arenal. There's still lots to do: explore the activities along Lake Arenal, view the masterpieces at Wood and Art Gallery, take in the dramatic scenery at La Fortuna Waterfall, and trek along Ecocentro Danaus.

To see where to stay, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos day trip planning site .

You can do a combination of flight and taxi from San Jose to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 2 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or drive. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 3rd (Sat) to allow time for the car ride to San Juan del Sur.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal)
Find places to stay Jan 29 — Feb 3:
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal)
Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal)

2
nights
San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

San Juan del Sur ©
Set in a crescent-shaped bay, San Juan del Sur has become known as a popular surfing spot and coastal holiday destination for Nicaraguan families and international visitors alike.
Start off your visit on the 4th (Sun): enjoy the sand and surf at San Juan del Sur Beach, kick back and relax at La Flor Beach Natural Reserve, and then make a trip to Mirador del Cristo de la Misericordia.

For photos, ratings, maps, and tourist information, use the San Juan del Sur trip builder .

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to San Juan del Sur takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and shuttle. In February in San Juan del Sur, expect temperatures between 35°C during the day and 28°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Mon) early enough to catch the shuttle to Granada.

Things to do in San Juan del Sur

Parks Beaches Outdoors
Find places to stay Feb 3 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
La Flor Beach Natural Reserve ©
La Flor Beach Natural Reserve
San Juan del Sur Beach ©
San Juan del Sur Beach

few
hours
Granada, Nicaragua

Granada ©
The lakeside city of Granada has the look and feel of a historically important economic and political center, with grand colonial architecture, a unified look, and many cultural attractions.
For other places to visit, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Granada travel planning website .

Traveling by shuttle from San Juan del Sur to Granada takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Plan for slightly colder nights when traveling from San Juan del Sur in February since evenings lows in Granada dip to 25°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 5th (Mon) to allow time for travel to Antigua.

Things to do in Granada

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Feb 5 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Catedral de Granada ©
Catedral de Granada

4
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.
Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Convento de las Capuchinas and Arco de Santa Catalina. Get a sense of the local culture at Volcán Pacaya and Casa Santo Domingo Museums. The adventure continues: pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia de la Merced, look for gifts at La Casa del Algodon, contemplate the long history of Casa Popenoe, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Church of San Francisco.

Start your trip to Antigua by creating a personalized itinerary on Inspirock.

You can do a combination of shuttle, flight, and bus from Granada to Antigua in 6.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of shuttle and bus. Traveling from Granada in February, expect Antigua to be little chillier, temps between 28°C and 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Fri) early enough to travel to Cancun.

Things to do in Antigua

Historic Sites Parks Nature
Find places to stay Feb 5 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Convento de las Capuchinas ©
Convento de las Capuchinas
Volcán Pacaya ©
Volcán Pacaya
Casa Santo Domingo Museums ©
Casa Santo Domingo Museums

6
nights
Cancun, Mexico

Few destinations in Mexico dazzle visitors quite like Cancun, a modern resort town filled with glitzy hotels sitting on picturesque and well-developed Caribbean beaches.
Get in touch with nature at Playa Delfines and Swim with Dolphins. Relax by the water at Playa Norte and Playa Tortugas. Go for a jaunt from Cancun to Playa del Carmen to see Scuba & Snorkeling about 1h 40 min away. There's lots more to do: contemplate the long history of El Rey Ruins (Zona Arqueologica El Rey), stop by Plaza Las Americas, play a few rounds at Cancun Golf Club at Pok-Ta-Pok, and explore and take pictures at Plaza de Toros Cancun.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Cancun tour itinerary planner .

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Antigua to Cancun. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from Antigua to Cancun. Traveling from Antigua in February, expect somewhat warmer with lows of 22°C in Cancun. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to San Cristobal de las Casas.

Things to do in Cancun

Outdoors Tours Parks

Side Trips

Playa Norte, Scuba & Snorkeling
Find places to stay Feb 9 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Swim with Dolphins
Playa Delfines ©
Playa Delfines

1
night
San Cristobal de las Casas, Mexico

San Cristobal de las Casas ©
San Cristóbal de las Casas, also known by its native Tzotzil name, Jovel, is a town and municipality located in the Central Highlands region of the Mexican state of Chiapas. On the 15th (Thu), look for gifts at Flora Maria Joyas de la Tierra, then stop by Bazarte - Vistiendo Arte Con História, and then examine the collection at Museo del Ambar.

To find reviews, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the San Cristobal de las Casas day trip app .

You can do a combination of flight and bus from Cancun to San Cristobal de las Casas in 5.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Cancun to San Cristobal de las Casas due to the time zone difference. Cap off your sightseeing on the 16th (Fri) early enough to travel to Mexico City.

Things to do in San Cristobal de las Casas

Museums Shopping
Find places to stay Feb 15 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Museo del Ambar ©
Museo del Ambar
Flora Maria Joyas de la Tierra ©
Flora Maria Joyas de la Tierra

4
nights
Mexico City, Mexico

Mexico City ©
Breathtakingly large, Mexico City provides a home for almost 9 million people living in nearly 1,700 distinct neighborhoods.
National Museum of Anthropology (Museo Nacional de Antropologia) and Templo Mayor Museum are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Museum-lovers will appreciate Palacio de Bellas Artes and Museo Anahuacalli. Go for a jaunt from Mexico City to San Juan Teotihuacan to see Zona Arqueologica Teotihuacan about 1h 20 min away. There's lots more to do: examine the collection at Frida Kahlo Museum, appreciate the extensive heritage of Historic Center (Centro Historico), steep yourself in history at Chapultepec Castle, and make a trip to Zocalo.

To see ratings, reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read our Mexico City trip builder site .

Traveling by combination of bus and flight from San Cristobal de las Casas to Mexico City takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In February in Mexico City, expect temperatures between 27°C during the day and 9°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Mexico City

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Zona Arqueologica Teotihuacan
Find places to stay Feb 16 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
National Museum of Anthropology ©
National Museum of Anthropology
Zona Arqueologica Teotihuacan ©
Zona Arqueologica Teotihuacan
Palacio de Bellas Artes ©
Palacio de Bellas Artes

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