The jungles of Mesoamerica, pyramids, royal tombs and hidden murals serve as evidence of the beautiful and mysterious ancient Maya. Take a trip to Guatemala and see recently discovered murals, while learning more about the Mayan culture.
Some highlights for this trip include: examining Maya murals in sites that are off limits to the public, exploring Tikal and Copan (two of the most important Maya sites worldwide), hiking through the Tikal jungle, and visiting the stunning town of Antigua.
The following is a 7-day Itinerary, which is designed by a National Geographic team, to pay a visit to the famous sites.
Day 1- Arrive in Guatemala City and transfer to the appropriate hotel. This is where you will gather for welcome dinner in the evening.
Day 2- Fly by private charter to Copan, Honduras a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There you will examine Mayan artifacts at the Copan Regional Museum and the acclaimed Copan Sculpture Museum.
Day 3- Spend the third morning at Copan. Here, you will discover the many sophisticated sculptures and architecture, including the hieroglyphic stairway, the acropolis and the ball court. Afterwards transfer to the airstrip at Copan for the charter flight to Flores. Once in Flores, you will be able to walk through the nearest tropical forest, and will hear from Bill Saturno about the rare Maya murals he discovered.
Day 4- Take a helicopter ride over San Bartolo to see rare Maya murals that few have seen. After lunch, you will take a trip to see the ancient Maya city of Xultun. Later on, continue by helicopter to the archaeological site of Uaxactun to see more ancient ruins.
Day 5- Head to the jungles to visit Tikal one of the two largest cities in the Classic Maya world. There you will see ancient pyramids over 200 feet and some 3,000 temples, shrines, ceremonial platforms and plazas scattered beneath the rain forest canopy. Later in the afternoon after the tour, fly to Guatemala City and transfer to the colonial town of Antigua.
Day 6- Visit the old city of Antigua, which is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take in the breathtaking view of three soaring volcanoes that tower over the Antiguan Valley. See the preserved colonial houses, monuments and markets. Afterwards, celebrate your journey with a festive farewell dinner.
Day 7- After breakfast, transfer to the Guatemala City airport for a return flight home.
The next trip to visit the Mayan cities will be from April 22-28, 2013.
You may view more info here: https://www.nationalgeographicexpeditions.com/reservations.html?expedition=346&tripdate=3596