Wild Belize Escape
FREE AIR FROM MIAMI - Book by 7/31.
Wildlife, Reefs, Rivers Plus Ruins of the Maya World
A Lindblad Expeditions Cruise on the National Geographic Quest
- 5 Nights aboard ship
- Charter flights to Puerto Barrios & Flores
- All meals & non alcoholic drinks aboard ship
- Shore Excursions
- Sightseeing & entrance fees
- Use of Kayaks, snorkeling gear & paddle boards
- Tips to local guides & drivers
- 3 Nights hotel in Tikal
- Meals on land as per itinerary
- Non - alcoholic beverages
DAY 1: GUATEMALA CITY/ PUERTO BARRIOS/ EMBARK
Arrive in Guatemala City and connect with our charter flight to Puerto Barrios. Transfer to Puerto Santo Tomás, where we’ll embark the National Geographic Quest. (D)
DAY 2: BELIZE BARRIER REEF, BELIZE
Awake anchored in the northern cayes of the Mesoamerican Reef System, second only to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in terms of biodiversity. Enjoy a full day to further explore this dynamic ecosystem. Take to the water by kayak, or stand-up paddleboard, or don a mask and fins and dive into turquoise waters to encounter sea turtles, swirling schools of tropical fish, and harmless nurse sharks. For scuba divers, incredible dive opportunities abound (additional cost). (B,L,D)
DAY 3: BELIZE BARRIER REEF Today, we explore more of the Belize Barrier Reef in the central cayes, with an opportunity to visit the Smithsonian-operated research station at Carrie Bow Caye. Here, we learn about the comprehensive studies being conducted on the reef ecosystem, including the biodiversity, evolution, and ecology of its organisms and communities, effectively ‘taking a pulse’ of the reef. The surrounding area offers outstanding snorkeling and diving, with vibrant corals and an incredible undersea diversity--a tropical paradise both above and below the surface of the Caribbean. (B, L, D)
DAY 4: COCKSCOMB BASIN WILDLIFE SANCTUARY
Spend the morning discovering the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, the world’s first jaguar reserve. Join our naturalists for a hike along one of the reserve’s many nature trails to photograph tropical plants, scan the treetops for winged wonders, and spot the tracks of tapirs and jungle cats. Learn about ongoing research into the behaviors of Belize's jaguars, then visit a Maya handicraft center. Tonight, an inter-nationally acclaimed drumming group, The Garifuna Collective, joins us on board for a festive music performance. (B, L, D)
DAY 5: MONKEY RIVER / BELIZE BARRIER REEF
Early this morning, we board local boats to cruise inland through this coastal river system. Along the river, lined with cecropia and kapok trees, the throaty roars of mantled howler monkeys echo through the canopy, green and spiny-tailed iguanas languidly laze on overhanging branches and little blue herons, males adorned in their exquisite blue and purple plumage, work the shallows watching and waiting for small fish, frogs and crustaceans. This afternoon we are back to the reef, this time in the southern cayes, where we go snorkeling, paddle boarding, or kayaking inside its fringing reef dotted with hundreds of coral patches that harbor parrotfish, butterflyfish, octopus, and other marine species. Enjoy the last rays of light as the sun sets on our Belizean adventure. (B, L, D)
DAY 6: PUERTO SANTO TOMAS, FLORES
Disembark in Puerto Santo Tomas and catch your charter flight to Flores, gateway to Tikal - one of the largest cities in the Classic Maya world. Enjoy lunch on the shores of picturesque Lake Petén Itzá before transferring to the Hotel Camino Real Tikal. Later, set out on an optional birding walk with our naturalists, or take a sunset boat cruise on the lake. (B, L, D)
DAY 7: TIKAL
Spend a full day exploring Tikal, where ancient pyramids tower more than 200 feet, and thousands of temples, shrines, and plazas are scattered beneath the rain forest canopy. Discover the site’s archaeological treasures, including the Temple of the Great Jaguar and the North and South Acropolis. Encounter ancient Maya art and hieroglyphs and examine carved stone inscriptions that illuminate the history and spiritual significance of Tikal. (B, L, D)
DAY 8: YAXHÁ
Explore Yaxhá, a former Maya ceremonial center situated on a ridge overlooking Yaxhá Lake. The world’s third largest known Maya site, Yaxhá spreads across nine plazas and contains multiple pyramids, ball courts, and stelae. Examine its features with your local guides and, if you wish, climb a temple for panoramic views. Later, enjoy lunch at a traditional Guatemalan restaurant, followed by an evening at leisure. (B, L, D)
DAY 9: FLORES / GUATEMALA CITY / U.S.: Transfer to the airport for your flights home. (B)
REGISTRY: United States. OVERALL LENGTH: 238 feet.
Purpose-built to deliver the best possible expedition cruising experience,
and designed with over 50 years of expedition heritage, National
Geographic Quest is able to explore the same remote locations we’ve
sought out for decades, while setting a new standard in comfort and style.
PUBLIC AREAS: Global gallery; fitness center; LEXspa; lounge with full
service bar and facilities for films and presentations; observation deck;
mudroom with lockers for expedition gear, and a partially covered sundeck with chairs and tables. Our “open bridge” provides guests an opportunity to meet our officers and captain and learn about navigation.
MEALS: Served in single seatings with unassigned tables for an informal
atmosphere and easy mingling. Breakfast is a wide selection buffet and
dinner is served family-style. Menu emphasizes local fare.
CABINS: All cabins face outside with windows or portholes, private facilities
and climate controls. Category 4 cabins have step-out balconies.
EXPEDITION EQUIPMENT: A fleet of 8 Zodiacs and 24 kayaks, Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), hydrophone, splash-cam, underwater video camera, video microscope, paddle boards, snorkeling gear for all guests (where applicable).
SPECIAL FEATURES: Guest internet access, elevator, a Lindblad
certified photo instructor, a video chronicler and undersea specialist.
WELLNESS: The vessel is staffed by a Wellness Specialist and features a
gym with an elliptical machine, treadmill, exercycles, handweights and
resistance bands. Treatments in the LEXspa are available by appointment.
CATEGORY 1: Main Deck #301-306 Cabins feature two lower single
beds that can convert to a Queen, a writing desk and two portholes.
CATEGORY 2: Main Deck #307-315 Cabins feature two lower single
beds that can convert to a Queen, a writing desk and two portholes.
CATEGORY 3: Upper Deck #201-206 Cabins feature two lower single
beds that can convert to a Queen, a writing desk and two large view
CATEGORY 4: Upper Deck #207-229 Cabins feature two lower single
beds that can convert to a Queen, a writing desk, large view window
and small, private balcony.