Thursday, September 17, 2009

Picture Itinerary

On October 21st, we fly into Cancun, Mexico. We’re hovering there for a few days of beach and relaxation before the big journey ahead. Cancun Beach:

Then over to Chitchen-Itza, also in Mexico:

Next stop, Tulum, Mexico, for more Mayan Ruins and the Xel-Ha snorkeling:

Then into Belize to Ambergris Caye. It’s very quaint and they rent golf carts to get around town. Enough said.

Trip to Hidden Valley Falls, Belize. Lots of secret waterfalls and wading pools:

Now Coban, Guatemala, to Semuc Champey. There’s a 300-meter natural limestone bridge that runs over the rapids. Gorgeous?

Chichicastenango, Guatemala (how fun is it to say that?) for an amazing market and lots of culture:

Then off to La Antigua, Guatemala, for some amazing architecture and churches:

And into Honduras! Tegucigalpa for more churches, architecture, and markets. Here’s one beautiful cathedral:

Macaw Mountain Bird Park and Nature reserve… for a little taste of the wildlife:

Managua, Nicaragua. The capital city, so lots of cathedrals, markets, and culture:

We’ll dick around in Nicaragua a little longer, but we’re not sure where else we wanna go yet. After that, it’s Costa Rica! First to Fortuna, where we can see Arenal Volcano, which erupts every night. Also, there are hot springs.

Now into Quepos, Costa Rica, where we’ll hit up Manuel Antonio National Park. The rainforest comes all the way down to the water’s edge! Garden of Eden:

Panama City. Obviously, the Panama Canal:

Pearl Islands, Panama. Scuba diving (and yes, this photo is from Panama):

After that, we’re on a very long bus ride through Eastern Panama and most of Colombia. We don’t want to stay in Colombia, as we value our lives. We’re making a quick stop for horseback riding to some burial monuments:

Then quickly over the border into Ecuador. Hidden in the mountains is an old colonial town called Quito:

Then we’re doing the Latacunga Loop. It’s hiking and camping through the mountains for five days or so:

Into Guayaquil, Ecuador, for some fantastic markets, parks, and soccer! I love soccer!

Next up is Mancora, Peru. Beach days, boating, and more relaxation:

Chachapoyas (also really fun to say), Peru is home to walking paths, ruins, culture, and the Kuelap Fortress, which is twice as old as the Incan empire:

Into Cusco, Peru, our base for the Machu Picchu trip. There’s some amazing Incan architecture there, too:

Machu Picchu, guh guh guh:
And of course Puno, Peru for Lake Titicaca:

Time-wise, we are a bit less than halfway through our journey. Distance-wise, we are less than 1/3 of the way through it. Ha.


D_Pain said...

Looks like fun girls! Remember, take it slow. DON'T stick to your game plan or you're gonna miss out on a lot of really amazing experiences. Take things as they come to you and be ready to just go with the flow... look into Tikal for one. Its on the way from Belize to Chichi. You can camp on the grounds for cheap and also if you use a little spanish and flirtation get some illegal after hours access to the park.

Look more into off the beaten path places in Honduras. Its phenomenal particularly the islands (same reef as Belize but a lot cheaper and way more laid back). DON'T skip Columbia. You'll be fine. I have a good friend who lives in Medallin, runs a tour company there and absolutely loves it.

Most of all, pack a LOOOOTTT of motion sickness pills if you really get that sick cause the buses in Latin America can make even the strongest of stomachs flip so you'll definitely need it.

Best of luck!

Bryon said...

A couple things about Panama and Colombia... There is no overland route from Panama to Colombia. It is known as the Darien gap, the border here is for drug-runners and is defended by them. You will either have to fly from Panama City to Bogota or take a boat from Colon to Cartagena. The dangerous part of Colombia is the long inter-city buses, they are occasionally attacked by guerrillas (drug cartel armies) to rob bus passengers at gunpoint. They do not kidnap people like the media would like you to believe, they used to kidnap known wealthy people for ransom.The cities are amazing and the people are great.
I suggest taking the boat to Cartagena, and visiting Medellin and Bogota, and fly to Quito from there.