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Belize to Tikal: Reefs, Rivers & Ruins of the Maya World

An Active Sea-and-Land Adventure Melding Some of the Best Nature & Culture in Central America
9 Days From $5760
Discover the vibrant coral reefs of Belize and the Maya ruins of Tikal in Guatemala on a sea-and-land expedition combining natural and cultural treasures. Aboard the new National Geographic Quest, explore the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System, a UNESCO World Heritage Site recognized for its exceptional biodiversity. This varied expedition includes highlights and less-visited sections of the Mesoamerican Reef, the longest in the Northern Hemisphere, which nurtures 500 species of tropical fish, sea turtles, rays, manatees and more. Birdwatching is a highlight on many coral-fringed, white-sand cayes, too. After five nights aboard ship, fly by chartered plane to Tikal National Park in Guatemala to wander among the stone temples, palaces and plazas of the Maya civilization. The once-great city of Tikal now lies in evocative ruins, overgrown with rain forest that's home to monkeys and tropical birds.

Trip Highlights

  • Active ExplorationSnorkel, dive, kayak, stand-up paddleboard and explore by Zodiac along the Belize Barrier Reef, teeming with tropical fish, turtles, rays, reef sharks and 100 species of coral
  • Ancient Maya CivilizationExplore the extensive Maya ruins of Tikal in depth, and also little-visited Yaxha, the third-largest archaeological site in the Maya world, spread over nine grand plazas
  • Pristine Rain Forest ReservesHike in Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Reserve, Belize's original jaguar sanctuary, and Guatemala's Maya Biosphere Reserve, protecting the largest tropical rain forest in Central America

Sail with the World Leader in Conservation-Focused Small Ship Cruising

We’re proud to offer a worldwide slate of Adventure Cruises through our partner, Lindblad Expeditions. Nat Hab joined forces with Lindblad in 2016 to expand our mutual collection of nature adventures. Founded in 1958 by Lars-Eric Lindblad, the company pioneered eco-conscious expeditions for “citizen explorers" and today is the world leader in conservation-focused small-ship cruises. Our Adventure Specialists are intimately familiar with the ships and itineraries and are on call to answer any questions you might have.

  1. Experience Makes the Difference
    Lindblad’s 20+ years exploring the coasts and interiors of Central America provides unparalleled expertise when it comes to small-ship expedition cruising. Lindblad owns and operates the National Geographic Quest, a new state-of-the-art vessel used on all departures of this voyage. The result is knowledge and attention to detail that few tour operators in the region can provide.
  2. A Unique Sea-and-Land Itinerary Enhances Your Immersive Experience
    Cover all the bases on this unusual combination of a marine expedition voyage along the Belize Barrier Reef with a journey into the interior of Guatemala for an in-depth encounter with the Maya ruins at Tikal. Both natural and cultural history are highlighted, for the most rewarding experience of these Central American treasures. 
  3. Local Naturalists Facilitate Rich Wildlife Encounters 
    Every voyage sails with a veteran Lindblad Expedition Leader and a hand-picked team of naturalists who are local experts, offering a guide-to-guest ratio of one naturalist for every 12 guests, with a wealth of daily activities to choose from. The ship's small scale means we can easily reach places inaccessible to larger vessels, offering in-depth access with varied points of view. The ship's naturalists know these seas, shores and trails intimately. They are adept at spotting wildlife, and their expertise offers greater insight to our guests.
  4. A Suite of Tools to Explore the Region's Exceptional Biodiversity
    Consider the ship a base camp for exploring this natural riches of the barrier reef and tropical rain forest. Its full complement of tools facilitates engaged, active exploration. Five expedition landing craft, plus eight single and 12 double kayaks, provide access to shorelines and remote rivers. Step ashore on empty beaches with no tourist infrastructure. Snorkel gear is available for every guest, so you’ll never miss a chance to swim with colorful fish, turtles, rays and other marine life. Video microscopes, high-definition screens, hydrophones and other tools provide added opportunities for in-depth scrutiny.
  5. Photography Experts Help You Get Outstanding Images
    Fascinating wildlife (both above and below the sea!), pristine beaches and lush rain forest vegetation offer enticing opportunities for nature photographers. Juxtaposed with the extraordinary Maya ruins at Tikal, these diverse settings provide an exhilarating array of photography prospects. A Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic certified photo instructor is on board to provide guidance, instructing you in every element of attaining outstanding images of your adventure.
  6. We’re Committed to the Planet
    Natural Habitat Adventure is a standard-setter in eco-conscious travel. We were the world’s first 100% carbon-neutral travel company. And we continue to break innovative ground in adopting practices that help to protect our global environment. Because of our concern for the environment, we are pleased to partner with Lindblad Expeditions for our Adventure Cruises, a company that shares our values and commitment to the planet.
  7. Natural Habitat Adventures is WWF's Travel Partner
    Because of our environmental commitment and the outstanding quality of our adventures, World Wildlife Fund has chosen Natural Habitat Adventures as its worldwide travel partner, a designation we’re very proud of! When you book your Lindblad Expeditions cruise with us, a portion of your trip fee supports WWF.
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