Your browser does not support the HTML5 video element.
A world of contrasts await on this epic adventure covering 5 countries in just 25 days, discovering the highlights of Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala. Discover verdant rainforests, smouldering volcanoes, paradise islands and ancient ruins.
Explore Tour Leader
21 nights comfortable hotel
3 nights premium hotel
Trip maximum 16 Explore average 11
Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.
Join trip in Panama City, Panama's eclectic capital and a curious mixture of old colonial Spanish architecture and modern American city buildings. Built on the back of the trade and plunder from the Spanish colonies in South America, Panama City was a key trade route as gold and silver were transported by mule through the rainforest of the Darien region, up to the Caribbean.
Due to the number of evening flights into Panama City, your Leader plans to do the welcome meeting on the morning of day two, and will leave a message in reception with details on timings and everything else that you'll need for the day. There are no activities planned today, so you are free to arrive in Panama City at any time. If you would like an airport transfer today, you'll need to arrive into Tocumen International Airport (airport code: PTY), approximately a 45 minute drive away from our hotel.
If your flight arrives earlier in the day, we recommend a visiting 'Casco Viejo', the heart of the colonial town. Its ramparts were built to fend off marauders, and from the top you have excellent views of the 'Bridge of the Americas'.
Urban Riande Granada (or similar)
This morning we will visit the Miraflores Locks to see the famous Panama Canal and appreciate the scale of this engineering miracle. Running 50 miles, the canal was carved out of the rainforest and through hillsides, lakes were dammed and locks built. After a serious French attempt costing in excess of 20,000 lives, the US successfully completed this remarkable endeavour after 10 years of toil in 1914. This afternoon has been left free for you to indulge in a little exploring of your own. 'Casco Viejo', full of Spanish plazas and colonial buildings, is a total contrast to the giant skyscrapers of the modern town and a great place to absorb the ambiance of the city.
This morning we take a public bus to Panama's beautiful southwest Chiriqui Province. This region is home to the Volcan Baru, a volcanic peak that at 3475m is the highest point in the country. The volcanic soil makes this a productive region, abundant in coffee and banana plantations, sugarcane crops and livestock. Tonight we will stay in the provincial capital of David.
Hotel Aranjuez (or similar)
This morning we head to Boquete for a town visit before we depart in the afternoon for Almirante Port, from where we take a boat to the Isla Colon and the small town of Bocas de Toro, our base for exploring the stunning archipelago and the equally spectacular Parque Nacional Marino Isla Bastimentos. The archipelago itself is made up of a number of beautiful forested islands lying in the warm Caribbean waters just to the south of Costa Rica and the laid back beaches and dazzling reefs make this the ideal Caribbean paradise to relax or explore.
Hotel Bocas Town (or similar)
We have a full free day today to enjoy fully this lovely island. There are a number of optional activities that you might like to try. The island is ringed with stunning beaches and there are opportunities to snorkel or dive the rich waters off shore. You may like to take a boat trip around the archipelago, which will go dolphin spotting or visit one of the outlying islands, such as Isla Bastimentos with its lovely beaches and tropical forests. The marine park itself can also be visited and is an important nesting ground for sea turtles, as well as being an important reserve for an abundance of marine and land based life.
Returning to the mainland by boat we turn north and head on a full day's drive to the Costa Rican town of Puerto Viejo Sarapiqui. We cross the border at Guabito, into the Caribbean lowlands of Limon Province. Puerto Viejo lies at the confluence of the Puerto Viejo and the Sarapiqui rivers, an area of tropical rain forest that was once an important hub on the Caribbean trade routes. The area lies in the shadow of the Central Cordillera Mountains, sandwiched between the Braulio Carrillo N.P. to the west and the Tortguero N.P. and Barra del Colorado National Refuge to the east.
Sarapiquí Rainforest Lodge (or similar)
This morning we have a chance to explore a little more of Puerto Viejo and its environs. This area has been in the forefront of conservation for a number of years and La Selva biological station on the outskirts of town has done a great deal to involve the local community directly in the research and conservation of the area. You may like to take a walk along one of the many trails, or perhaps take a boat ride along the river, to see for yourself some of the beautiful forest that covers this fertile region. In the afternoon we drive, skirting the great central volcanic massif, past fertile farmlands, rich with a diversity of tropical crops, bringing us within sight of Arenal, Costa Rica's most active volcanic cone. This classic cone, which rises to 1,633m and is covered by a tangled mass of vegetation on one side whilst the other is starkly barren and scarred by lava flows. We recommend an evening bathe in the nearby thermal baths this evening (optional).
Destinos Arenal (or similar)
This morning we visit the still active Arenal Volcano, set in an area of national park covering some 9,884 acres. The volcano has been fairly constantly active since the late 1960s and together with the impressive manmade Lake Arenal, the largest in Costa Rica, has helped the area to regenerate through tourism. After our visit we continue to the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, one of the last remaining habitats in Central America of the famous Resplendent Quetzal, only occasionally sighted by eager travellers. The reserve covers an area of 10,522 hectares and contains within it a staggering diversity of flora and fauna; 2,000 species of plant, 400 species of birds and 100 different species of mammals.
Jardines de Monteverde (or similar)
Rising early, we head into the reserve for a guided walk through the cloudforest, searching for a glimpse of the three-wattled bellbird or the Quetzal, whose feathers were traded as valuable items throughout pre-Columbian America. You have the afternoon free to explore this forest haven; you may wish to participate in the many amazing optional activities around the Reserve such as an exhilerating zip-wire experience as you whiz through the canopy, or perhaps exploring the forest on suspension bridges strung at canopy height. Alternatively the area's butterfly farm and orchid gardens are both well worth a visit. Tonight we also have the option to take a night walk, discovering how the forest comes alive after dusk.
Our journey through Costa Rica's forests and jungles continues today as we head towards the Rincon de la Vieja National Park, an enormous adventure playground located close to the Nicaraguan border in the Guanacaste Province. The National Park has room for two volcanoes, of which one is still active, surrounded by a lush area of lagoons and craters, punctuated with steaming vents and pools of boiling mud. The changing elevation ranges of the park have resulted in an area of diverse habitats that house a variety of vegetation and wildlife. On arrival we will have the option to relax at our eco lodge, or alternatively we can choose to do some nature walks in the National Park, take a horseride to the Oropendola Waterfall, or walk to the park's mud and hot springs.
Cañon de la Vieja (or similar)
This morning we visit the Rincon de la Vieja, with the aim of hiking along the Las Pailas Trail. This approximately 3 km hike is moderately difficult due to the uneven ground and the many large roots and rocks to tackle, but we'll take a leisurely pace and enjoy the diverse scenery of the trail. We'll be crossing bridges, walking through forest and across fields, all the while discovering the most impressive features of the park: the steam vents, or fumaroles. These incredible volcanic features pop out of the woods and forests as if from nowhere, along with bubbling ponds and mud pools from the underground volcanic heat and gases. During the first section of the trail we'll have the opportunity to spot wildlife in the forest, from a variety of bird species (toucans, blue-crowned motmots and flycatchers among many others), as well as spider monkeys, coatis or sloths if we're lucky.
This afternoon we have free time to enjoy some of the many optional activities on offer. There is plenty of hiking to be had nearby, as well as a walk to mud and hot springs, or if you're a fan of adventure, undertake the canyon swing at the Rio Blanco Canyon, or explore the surroundings on horseback or by bike.
Crossing the border into Nicaragua this morning a short drive brings us to San Jorge, the departure point for ferries to Ometepe Island. Ometepe is made up of two volcanoes connected by an isthmus; indeed its name comes from the Nahuatl language and means 'two hills'. The perfect cone of Concepción volcano soars from the depths of Lake Nicaragua to 1610m, only just dwarfing the neighbouring Maderas volcano at 1394m. We leave the time here free to explore at your own pace and there are many things to do during our time here. You can explore by local bus or truck, perhaps searching out pre-Colombian petroglyphs carved by the indigenous people, or taking in some of the highlights of the island and some short walks on the volcanic slopes (all optional). The forests echo with the sounds of howler monkeys and parrots and the canopy hides sloths and hawks amongst its lush foliage. Alternatively you could visit the San Ramon Falls. For the less energetic, some of the black sand beaches are the perfect spot to drink in the stunning views across the lake.
Hotel Villa Paraiso (or similar)
Today is left free to further explore these amazing volcanic islands.
We return by boat to San Jorge this morning and from there drive to Granada. Atmospheric Granada is a colonial gem, situated at the foot of Mombacho volcano on the northwest shore of Lake Nicaragua. It was the first colonial city in Nicaragua, founded in 1524 by the conquistador Hernandez de Cordoba and is set off by baroque and renaissance buildings which is a pure visual delight. We plan a city tour this afternoon, which will include visits to the Parque Central, the Monument to the war of independence, the plaza and the convent of San Fransisco, which holds the largest collection of stone sculptures from the early Americans who lived in Granada before the Spaniards.
Hotel Patio del Malinche (or similar)
Granada is the perfect city to explore on foot, wandering the narrow lanes and alleyways, discovering hidden delights amongst the central Plaza and historic buildings. It is possible to visit Las Isletas by boat or sea kayak - a group of tiny islands dominated by the Volcano Mombacho, located just offshore. You can glide through the forest canopy on a zip line - a remarkable experience, or venture farther afield, into the surrounding area, a prosperous agricultural centre growing hemp and tobacco. There are also possibilities to arrange visits to the Mombacho Cloud Forest. Your tour leader will be more than happy to help arrange any excursions you may like to try.
We drive to the old colonial capital of Leon today, lying in the shadow of the Cordillera de los Maribios Mountains. Heading northwest from Granada we stop at the famous market town of Masaya to visit the Masaya volcano. From here we continue to the Nicaraguan capital of Managua. In comparison with colonial Leon and Granada, Managua is not the most attractive of Nicaragua's cities but it does have its own curious, if somewhat unorthodox, charm. Badly damaged in the 1972 earthquake, the city is gradually being rebuilt. We plan a short tour to see some points of interest. We then drive to Leon, today considered the intellectual centre of Nicaragua, Leon was founded in 1525 and was the capital for 200 years. In the afternoon we will have a walking tour of Leon, where our local guide will introduce us to some of the city's most important sites visiting Plaza del las Armas, the Cathedral arguably the largest in Central America and a UNESCO heritage site and the Sandinista Murals and Ruben Dario Park, named after one of Latin America's most renowned poets. The city of Leon was home to the revolution that shaped Nicaragua's future, and since then it has played a crucial part in the social and political history of the country. On our walking tour we will see many murals depicting the civil war and the revolution - a testament to the importance of this movement in the country's turbulent history.
Hotel Austria (or similar)
This morning we have some free time, and the intrepid amongst us may head out of the city to summit Cerro Negro, an imposing active volcano just a short journey from the city of Leon. The ascent takes around an hour, and although the climb is only around 500m, the path is steep and tough. The absence of trees on the slopes of the mountain provides fantastic 360 views of the area one we are at the crater rim, and if we are lucky, we may see the smoke and gas often emitted from this central crater. For something less exertive, Las Penitas Beach is a great place to relax for the day, whilst a visit to San Juan Venado Mangrove Reserve provides the opportunity to spot a wealth of wildlife, including crocodiles, caiman and iguanas. This afternoon we depart from Leon, crossing the border into Honduras and continuing our journey to the capital, Tegucigalpa. Founded by the Spanish in 1578, the city was once a trading centre for the locally mined gold and silver for its colonial masters and its ideal location must have made it a pleasant respite from the oppressive heat of the coastal regions.
Hotel Excelsior (or similar)
This morning we will fly to the beautiful Bay Islands, home to some of the best diving and snorkelling in the Caribbean. The 3 islands lying some 50km off the Honduran coast are a marine wonderland, with reefs that teem with life. For the next two nights we base ourselves on the island of Roatan, the largest of the islands and the perfect location from which to enjoy the spectacular beaches and rich waters of this underwater haven.
Paradise Beach Hotel (or similar)
Here you are free to do as much or as little as you wish. The obvious activity for most people who come to these islands is to explore the offshore reefs, part of a chain that is only second in size to the Great Barrier Reef itself. There are a number of dive shops on the island for any qualified divers (don't forget to bring your certification with you) and the snorkelling is second to none, with reefs that are alive with corals and sponges and colourful reef fish of every size, shape and hue. It is also possible to hire boats and kayaks to explore farther afield, or go fishing. Those who prefer to stick to dry land might like to stroll through the palm fringed lanes and wander the island in search of macaws, toucans and parrots, or perhaps just some peace and quiet at the nearby Sandy Bay's resort or visit the nearby botanical gardens.
Leaving our island paradise early this morning, we head back to the mainland for a full days travel. Our destination today is the magnificent Mayan ruins of Copan. Travelling around the town of San Pedro Sula in the rich hot fertile lowlands of the Sula Valley, we arrive at Copan Ruinas, a lovely village of adobe buildings very close to the ruins themselves.
Hotel Plaza Copan (or similar)
This morning we visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site with a local guide. Everyone familiar with Catherwood's incredible drawings (which first appeared in John Stephens' 1841 narrative - 'Incidents of Travel in Central America and Yucatan') will recognise scenes and objects from this marvellous site. Stephens actually bought the entire site for US$ 50 from a local farmer! The Great Plaza is one of the most amazing achievements of the Classic Maya period (AD 750) and contains the greatest collection of Maya sculpture anywhere in Meso- America. The famous Hieroglyphic Stairway is composed of 2500 individual glyphs; its sides flanked by serpentine birds and snakes. We have the whole day to enjoy this special place, leaving you plenty of time to explore on your own. In the afternoon you may like to visit the museum dedicated to the site, or visit some nearby hot springs or to Macaw Mountain (optional).
We head into Guatemala this morning, to the stunning city of Antigua, set in a beautiful valley between the volcanoes Agua, Fuego and Acatenango. An orientation tour of this graceful old colonial city, with its cobbled streets and lovely old buildings identifies it as one of the most charming in the country and shows how it can justly claim to be one of the most picturesque in Central America, despite the damage caused by a series of earthquakes and floods over the ages. This afternoon we intend to take a walking tour of the town. Much of Antigua has been repeatedly devastated by earthquakes, but still it retains a graceful charm and its buildings and ruins give it the air of a snapshot in time.
Villa Colonial (or similar)
The next two days are free to explore more of the city and its environs as you wish. Antigua itself deserves at least a day's wandering, you may like to visit churches, colonial buildings, museums as well as spending time shopping in its many markets. Alternatively may like to visit the close by Mayan site; Iximche, once the capital of the Cakchiquel Maya, founded in the 15th century. Set within pine forests the ruined city was once believed to be home to some 10,000 people at its height, until the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors resulted in its eventual destruction in 1526.
There is also the option, on one of your two days in Antigua, to visit the Maya site of Tikal. This full day trip entails a domestic flight from Guatemala City to Flores, before the drive to the majestic jungle-clad ruins, which were, in their prime, the pride of the Maya empire.
For those not wishing to spend the day exploring the city, a day trip to Lake Atitlan takes in one of Guatemala's most stunning locations. Panajachel, on the shores of the spectacular lake, is an old Spanish settlement that has attracted foreigners to its charming location for years. The lake itself is an old caldera, its deep waters surrounded by the towering volcanic peaks of its neighbours. This is an ideal place to shop for those last minute presents, or just enjoy the ambience of its lakeside setting. Alternatively, you could visit Guatemala City, the bustling country capital, is situated on a high plateau (1495m) and possesses all the usual contradictions found in large Latin American cities: elegant tree-lined boulevards and high-rise architecture alongside crowded shanties. It also has a number of sites and museums that are worth visiting, including the Ixchel Museum, with its displays of Guatemalan textiles and arts, or the majestic Palacio National in the Plaza Major.
The trip ends this morning at our hotel in Antigua Guatemala.
There are no activities planned today, so you are free to depart at any time. If your flight is departing later in the day, luggage storage facilities are available at our hotel. If you would like an airport transfer today, you'll need to depart from La Aurora International Airport (airport code: GUA). The drive between the airport and our hotel is only 40km but can take between 1.5 and 4 hours depending on the traffic and the time of day.
Seasonal weather patterns can be unpredictable. Up-to-date information on the weather worldwide can be found by following the BBC weather link on this page. Costa Rica has a tropical climate with high temperature humidity and rainfall. The average temperature is 21°C in the highlands and variable in the lowlands. The rainy season is from May to October and the summer from December to April, but it does still tend to rain, usually in short bursts. Bear in mind that Costa Rica has 12 microclimates and weather can vary significantly in one day.
2 Pin Flat
Christian, Roman Catholic
In the high plains (1524m-1981m) the climate is temperate all year round. In lower areas the climate is semi-tropical. The mountains can be cool especially at night. In general, the dry season in Guatemala lasts from Nov - April. From May to October there are often fine mornings and clear evenings but afternoon rains tend to be heavy. The Peten lowlands tend to be rainy all year round though less so from February to April.
Catholic and Protestant
Climate change varies depending upon altitude. Mid range temperatures reach about 28°C. Rainfall is low to moderate with May to October being the wettest season. Temperature ranges in the lower reaches of the slopes and along the coast are more constant, with less rainfall.
Roman Catholic and Protestant
Tropical, with little seasonal variation in temperature. The heavy rainy season is May to October but it can rain at any time along the Caribbean coast of Rio San Juan. There are 3 main climactic zones, the hot tropical lowlands and the cooler hill region, which has a larger range of daily temperature.
Panama has a tropical climate with high temperature and humidity, the average temperature 30°C. The rainy season is from May to November and the summer from December to April. The rainfall is of a tropical nature, falling for 1-2 hours in the afternoon.
Panama City tour US$10 Bocas del Toro - Full day snorkel excursion US$25 Sarapiqui - River boat trip US$23 Arenal - Hotspring US$65 (with dinner); US$15 Las Termalitas. Monteverde - Butterfly Gardens US$15, Reptile and Amphibian Centre US$15, Nightwalk US$25, Hanging bridges US$35, Zipwire Canopy US$45. Rincon De La Vieja - Horse riding US$ 45 Ometepe - Guided tour US$ 25, Volcano Maderas / or Concepcion walk US$ 35 (min. 2 persons). Leon - Las Penitas and Juan Venado Reserve US$ 45; Iguana farm US$ 25; Cerro Negro Hike US$ 30 Granada - Boat to Las Isletas US$ 25 based on 4 sharing, Mombacho Cloud Forest Canopy Tour US$ 55.00 based on 4 sharing, Kayak US$ 25 Roatan - Diving US$ 30 one tank, Snorkel - US$15, Glass bottom - US$25 Copan - Visit to Hot Springs US$ 35, Macaw Mountain US$ 10 +US$5 tpt Antigua - All prices depending on numbers - minimum 3 Lake Atitlan inc. boat trip US$80-23; Guatemala City US$ 90-30; Pacaya volcano US$65 (based on 5) and US$39 (based on 15) ; Chichicastenango US$ 38-40 (min 5 people) ; Jade workshop US$48; Day trip to Tikal US$350 (inc guide and lunch) - subject to availability - please book with your Tour Leader on arrival; La Casa del Ron - Rum tasting US$13
Lightweight clothing is essential though a warmer sweater is advisable for cooler evenings in the highlands. A waterproof is essential. The jungle lowlands are hot and muggy, and it can rain at any time of year. Long trousers and long-sleeved shirts are recommended on jungle walks.
Comfortable walking boots or shoes and trainers or sandals.
One main piece of luggage and a daysack is essential for this trip.
A torch, water bottle, insect repellent, high factor sunscreen, beach towel, camera film, waterproof bag for camera and motion sickness tablets/patches for the boat. If intending to snorkel you may wish to bring your own equipment and anyone intending to dive on Roatan will need to bring log books and certification. An umbrella can be useful in short downpours. The Nicaraguan border controls at both land and airport arrival points have now stopped the entry of binoculars, drones and professional camera equipment. Although there is nothing official about this on the UK Foreign Office Advice, we've had some reports of binoculars being confiscated at border controls.
Bus, Ferry, Flight
During this trip we stay in a range of comfortable, 3 star standard hotels and lodges. At the end of the trip we have three nights at the beautiful Villa Colonial in Antigua, a colonial style accommodation with a lush garden, swimming pool and fantastic views to the Volcan Fuego from the balcony of the restaurant.
Can you drink the water?
The water quality is poor and therefore it is recommended to avoid drinking tap water during your trip.
We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK citizens, check the latest Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office advice.
Please refer to our COVID-19 entry requirements page for any country-specific conditions of entry. Whilst we strive to update this on a regular basis we recommend you also check the FCDO website for the latest advice on entry requirements in this fast-evolving situation. Information can change at any time.
Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.
Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. However, please note that if you voluntarily make any changes to your booking including changing your trip or departure date, any additional costs or charges incurred will not be covered. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions
Panama: Citizens from the UK, New Zealand, Australian, US and Canada do not require a visa for a stay up to 30 days. However, on entry you will be required to show that you have either 500USD in cash or a credit card. Costa Rica: Citizens from the UK, US, Canada and most EU countries do not require a visa for a stay up to 90 days. Citizen of Australia, New Zealand and the Republic of Ireland do not require a visa for stays up to 30 days. Nicaragua: Visas are not required for UK, New Zealand, Australian, US and Canadian citizens. Honduras: Citizens from UK, New Zealand, Australia, New Zealand and most EU national do not require a visa. Guatemala: Visas are not required for UK, New Zealand, Australian, US and Canadian citizens. All travellers entering or exiting Guatemala must complete the immigration pre-clearance form. You will receive a confirmation email, which you should print and carry with you or have a screen shot of the QR code. USA: If your flights pass through the USA, even if only in transit, you will require either a visa or an ESTA (an e-visa). Please read on for more information. Citizens of the UK, New Zealand, Australia, Canada and passport holders from several EU countries can apply for an ESTA under certain conditions. This applies if you enter the country by sea or by air, and this must be done online via https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov, no later than 72 hours prior to travel. Travellers who have not registered before their trip are likely be refused boarding. You must have a biometric passport to apply for an ESTA. UK passports which are biometric feature a small gold symbol (camera) at the bottom of the front cover. If you have visited Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen since 2011 or are dual nationals of these countries, you cannot travel with an ESTA and instead you will need to apply for a visa from the nearest US Embassy or Consulate. If you are unable to provide a valid visa before boarding flights to the US, or entering via another method, you may not be permitted to travel. You should also be aware that if you have travelled to or have been in Cuba since the 12th of January 2021, you will not be eligible for an ESTA visa waiver and will need to apply for a US visa. You should consult the US State Department website to determine which you will need. Your ESTA application will ask for Point of Contact information. Please note that if you're only transiting through the USA then this is not required. If you're visiting or staying in the USA on an Explore trip, then our USA contact information will be listed on your final documentation which you will receive approximately 3-4 weeks before departure. Entry requirements for the USA can change regularly, therefore, please ensure you have the most up to date information before you travel by checking the US embassy website. Visa applications - http://london.usembassy.gov/niv/apply.html Canada: An electronic travel authorisation (ETA) is required by British citizens transiting via Canada. For more information see the official Canadian government website: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/eta.asp Other nationalities should consult their local embassy or consular office
If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may be able to apply through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.
It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.
Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information.
You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.
Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The complimentary transfers will be arranged from the Explore designated airport or train station to your trips joining point, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. Generally the airport or station that Explore have selected will be the one that is closest to the town or city where the trip starts, or the one nearest to the joining point. It will be either an airport or train station but not both.
The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.
Free transfers are not available for Polar customers.
If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.
For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here
It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. The cost of many of our Polar Voyages will exceed the capped amount covered by standard insurance premiums and you will be required to pay an additional premium to cover the full value of your trip. Please ensure that you are covered for the full amount of your holiday cost, as insufficient cover could invalidate a claim under the policy. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Read more information about what travel insurance is required.
Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.
You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.
We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.
On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.
An ability to swim is essential for your safe enjoyment of the water based activities on this trip. If you wish to participate in these activities then we insist that you are able to swim.
Nothing compulsory, but we recommend protection against typhoid, infectious hepatitis and polio. Please consult your travel clinic for the latest advice on Malaria, Dengue and Zika Virus. Please take preventative measures to avoid mosquito bites - these include mosquito repellent as well as long trousers and long sleeve shirts to cover up when necessary. Please note many countries in Central America, South America and the Caribbean require a yellow fever vaccination certificates if travelling from infected areas. A detailed list of these countries can be found on the NaTHNaC website - http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries. Also on the NaTHNaC site there is a list of Countries (and specific areas within a country) which are at risk of infection and a vaccination is therefore recommended. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.
Nothing compulsory, but we recommend protection against typhoid, infectious hepatitis and polio. Please consult your travel clinic for the latest advice on Malaria, Dengue and Zika Virus. Please take preventative measures to avoid mosquito bites - these include mosquito repellent as well as long trousers and long sleeve shirts to cover up when necessary. Please note many countries in Central America, South America and the Caribbean require a yellow fever vaccination certificates if travelling from infected areas. A detailed list of these countries can be found on the NaTHNaC website - http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries. Also on the NaTHNaC site there is a list of Countries (and specific areas within a country) which are at risk of infection and a vaccination is therefore recommended. All travellers coming to Nicaragua from the following countries (even if only in transit) must present an international certificate of vaccination: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guyana, Panamá, Paraguay and Venezuela. From the African Continent, all countries are included except Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Sao Tomé and Príncipe and Somalia. This list is regularly updated please check NaTHNaC for the most up to date list. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.