"Mayan Mysteries in a Jungle Setting" Top 5 Page for this destination Parque Nacional Tikal by windsorgirl
Parque Nacional Tikal Travel Guide: 314 reviews and 1,008 photos
I was on holiday in Belize for 2 weeks, however since I was staying in San Ignacio within 10 miles of the Guatemalan border, it seemed like a perfect opportunity to see the famous Mayan ruins of Tikal.
My day at the ruins turned out to be the highlight of my entire trip. Sitting high atop temple IV in the early morning watching the toucans in nearby trees and spider monkeys swinging through the branches was an unforgettable experience!
There are several options to get yourself to Tikal from Belize.
First, and most expensive is a guided tour from San Ignacio, these were $75 US but only allow a few hours at the ruins, and about 4 hours travelling. They will also provide transportation only for $25-30 US each way. This way you can stay overnight and spend as much time as you like at the ruins.
The second option is to take a 5BZ taxi to the border from San Iganacio. Walk across the border and then walk to the bus station and wait for the next bus or collectivo to Flores. You will have to get off the bus on the highway at El Cruce, then wait for another bus heading to Tikal. This would be the cheapest option, but the least convenient.
A third option, which we did, was to take the taxi from San Iganacio, then once across the border we negotiated a taxi to take us directly to our hotel in El Remate which is located 35 kms from Tikal on beautiful Lake Peten. This cost us $10 US each. The next morning we took a 530 am shuttle to Tikal which cost $2 US. The return trip to the Belizean border the next day only cost $4. For some reason it is much easier to get back to the border than it is to get from the border to Tikal. This method cost us half the price of the organized tour but was very convenient and allowed us complete freedom.
As much as I enjoyed the ruins at Tikal, staying overnight in the small town of El Remate on the shores of Lake Peten provided an insight into the Guatemalan way of life.
I learned that very few Guatemalans speak English, but they were very patient with my rudimentary Spanish.
In El Remate, daily life is centered on the lake. We saw many children swimming and playing in the water. Mothers would be washing clothes and themselves in the lake, while the men would be washing their cars. Horses and dogs would drink from the lake and even a trio of pigs wandered down to the lakeshore for a wallow in the mud!
Temple II is also found in the Great Plaza, facing Temple I. It is also known as the Temple of the Masks and it is 38 m... more travel advice
Tikal was home to the Maya for over 1500 years. There is evidence of occupation as early as 700BC. Tikal was most... more travel advice
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Latest: Dec 5, 2013