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Central American Highlights CAQ

Trip Duration 16 Days

Reviews for Central American Highlights

Travellers were asked to provide a review of the trip, including highlights and tips.

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Central American Highlights reviews verified by reevooReevoo

26 reviews

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Central American HighlightsScores 8.5 out of 10 based on 26 reviews
(6 out of 10)


Because no meals were provided apart from 5/6 breakfasts, it was a nuisancce having to check the currency, whether you had enough local currency to pay - this was difficult enough having to deal with 5 different countries currencies, although we were informed by tour guide all the places took dollars and given a vague rough exchange rate to the dollar.( it was pointless overchanging currency if you ended with surplus which you could't use elsewhere). Other negatives was the expensive food and excursions.On the plus side, trip was good enough in that it took in 5 countries and gave an insight into them and the our mini van driver was excellent,competent,also Jose was a good tour leader. It also helped that we were a small group (6)and that some of the accomodation was centrally located. Highlight was the volcano walk despite the rather hairy walk (visually as though you were walkking down a vertical drop).
Confirmed traveller: 27 August 2016
Published on: 09 October 2016
(5 out of 10)


The itinerary was very basic, the trips were quite expensive for what they were. A lot of down time not as fast paced as expected
Confirmed traveller: 26 August 2016
Published on: 13 September 2016

Hi Kennedy, many thanks for your feedback. I am the Product Manager for this trip, and I will be going out with a group in October to inspect the itinerary and look into any changes that should be made. It’s really useful to have comments like yours in mind as I do this – there is a lot of travelling within this itinerary, spending time in 5 countries over 2 weeks, so it’s a shame that the pace of the tour was still slow. Please be assured that I’ll look into it and make any improvements that I can for future tours.

(5 out of 10)


Too much coach time, for not a lot of reward.
There were some good parts of the holiday, but in general not a lot going on, and not much to see. Unfortunately our guide was not as helpful as other guides we've had in the past.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful
Confirmed traveller: 23 July 2016
Published on: 02 August 2016

Hi Lesley, thank you for your feedback on this trip. I am sorry that you found there was not a lot going on, which is a shame as the itinerary and the guides normally get fabulous reviews. We are looking to send one of our operational managers on this trip so we will keep your comments in mind while reviewing the trip overall. Please be assured we will see if we can maximise the experience. On this trip we visit towns and villages in five countries over two weeks, traversing lakes, mountains and volcanos, so it’ll be tough to fit extra in!

(9 out of 10)


I was travelling on my own and I had a great time on this trip. Jose, the guide went out of his way to ensure that everyone on the trip had the experiences that they hoped for? He had amazing energy, he always had a smile and sense of humour; he made sure we had fun, at the same time being ultra professional. It was a fast paced trip and this meant that we saw many different places and hadmany different experiences.
Highlights for me were: hearing more about the the recent revolutionary history of several Central American countries, the wonderful water trips, seeing the amazing bird and wildlife, and fun nights out sampling the local beers.
Go got it! You will have a great time. My one tip is bring a pair of lightweight binoculars.
Confirmed traveller: 01 April 2016
Published on: 14 April 2016
(8 out of 10)


A very good insight into the history, culture and wildlife of Central America. A lot of travelling, one day in particular was challenging. However overall it was worth it.
Confirmed traveller: 13 February 2016
Published on: 16 February 2016
(9 out of 10)

Confirmed traveller

We went over the Xmas / New Year period, so a few things were shut and had to be altered, but it didn't affect the enjoyment at all.

The largest group (18) I have ever been with on an Explore holiday, but they were a great bunch and everyone got on well which added to the enjoyment.

Where do I start?

A full on holiday - early starts, lots of travelling, but worth it.

Nicaragua was probably (unexpectedly) the country highlight for me. Friendly people, lovely old colonial buildings, and volcanoes?! Walk up one and get driven up one.

Interesting wildlife - saw a sloth?! Good for bird lovers also.

Zip lining was fun after the night camping (in en-suite tent) in the rain forest.

So much good stuff?!

Only (very minor) criticism was that it took a long time to get meals with such a large group (service is slow in this part of the world, 1.5 hours or more not unusual to wait)and some group members insisted on having lunch each day (as well as breakfast and dinner), which meant a late arrival at the next stop, usually after dark. I'd have preferred 'picnic' or 'on the run/bus' lunches to give more sightseeing time.

All in all - a great trip! Brilliant!

Jose's learning the foibles and humour subtleties of the Brits quickly. Organised meals and other things when asked and generally came out with us and became one of the team and was good fun.

Imparted much knowledge.

Armed us with alcohol to see the new year in?!

Helped me greatly (and with good humour) with an immigration stamp issue which involved a lot of taxiing about to various border crossings and long discussions with officials.

Would be more than happy to have Jose as a tour leader again! Avoid Nicaraguan rum for breakfast - things can go horribly wrong?!

Check your passport stamps at every border crossing (there's lots - as you criss cross?!)

Persuade the group to skip lunches.

If in season try to get to see the turtles breeding at San Juan del Sur (book at Cosa Ora hostel for the best trip, if not yet offered by Explore)

Confirmed traveller: 14 January 2016
Published on: 12 March 2016
(9 out of 10)


walking up cerro negro volcano in Nicaragua, Hotel stay in El Salvador.
Confirmed traveller: 09 January 2016
Published on: 07 February 2016
(10 out of 10)


Seeing a sloth! - how the guide spotted it I don't know - it still took us several minutes to spot even when he was pointing it out.

Seeing turtles nest, lay and hatch.

Peering down a 'live' volcano and also climbing one.
Confirmed traveller: 09 January 2016
Published on: 24 January 2016
(10 out of 10)

Confirmed traveller

The whole trip from start to finish was just a brilliant experience! Even the coach journeys were enjoyable: with spotting wildlife, admiring the stunning scenery and people watching as we passed through small villages. Highlights for me were white-water rafting, Papusa making in El Salvador, spending the night listening to the howler monkeys and rain hammering on the tent in the rainforest, spending my birthday sharing cake with local children on an island in Granda ( plus singing karaoke that night!) dancing the night away in San Juan Del Sur and 'Rum night' in El Salvador!Jose was the best tour leader I've ever had on any of these trips- I cannot rate him highly enough! He was fun, patient and made time for every single person in our group. Nothing was too much trouble for Jose and anything that was asked of him he did efficiently and with ease- even down to finding out where I could get a massage in Granada and translating at the local pharmacy for a couple of us! Jose was so knowledgeable about every country (5!!) that we went to- I don't know how he remembers everything! It was mine and another person's birthday two days apart on the trip- Jose went out of his way to get birthday cakes with our names on, bought us a small gift and made both days so brilliant yet so different!On the longer bus journeys he was constantly checking that we were comfortable, pointing out wildlife and areas of interest along the way. He really did contribute immensely to make this trip special for everyone!
Confirmed traveller: 27 August 2015
Published on: 12 March 2016
(10 out of 10)

Confirmed traveller

This was the first time I've used Explore and my experience far surpassed my expectations. From the moment I landed at San José in Costa Rica to the moment I left Guatamala, the trip was perfectly executed and the tour leader, José, dealt with everything seamlessly. We travelled through five countries and across numerous borders but that was only part of the adventure! My highlights are numerous: white water rafting and Volcano running (dirty but immense fun!) were my two adventuring highlights, but we also visited a village where we celebrated one of our party's birthday with the villagers in their environment and on another day, visited a school where e played with and were entertained by the amazing children. These two things were my 'eye opening' experiences and made me feel immensely humbled. Culturally my highlights were Leon in Nicaragua (simply because there was a festival going on whilst we were there and I have never seen anything like it before) and the town on Lake Atitlan where we visited the school and the shrine to Maximon (this has to be seen to be believed!)José was fantastic, nothing was too much trouble. He was organised, meticulous in details and passionate and knowable about Central America. He shattered his knowledge at the right pace and to the right depth. Apart from that he was friendly and made sure that everyone was included.
Confirmed traveller: 27 August 2015
Published on: 12 March 2016