40 days in Houston & Central America Itinerary

40 days in Houston & Central America Itinerary

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40 days in Houston & Central America Itinerary

Calgary, Canada
Fly:  8​h
Houston, United States
— 1 night
Fly:  14​h 30​min
Bocas Town, Panama
— 4 nights
Fly:  2​h 45​min
Panama City, Panama
— 4 nights
Drive:  12​h 30​min
Drake Bay, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
+3
taxi + Fly + taxi + shuttle:  7​h 45​min
Tortuguero, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
shuttle + Fly:  4​h
Tamarindo, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
Fly:  2​h 15​min
San Jose, Costa Rica
— 2 nights
Drive:  16​h 15​min
Dangriga, Belize
— 9 nights
Fly:  2​h 30​min
San Pedro, Belize
— 4 nights
Fly:  15​min
Belize City, Belize
— 2 nights
bus + Fly:  11​h 30​min
Calgary, Canada

1
day
Houston, United States

Houston ©
Although urban sprawl remains synonymous with Houston, most of the city's tourist attractions lie within the relatively small downtown area, surrounded by diverse neighborhoods housing the nation's biggest African-American, Asian-American, and Latino communities.
Start off your visit on the 19th (Tue): don't miss a visit to Water Wall, then admire the masterpieces at Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and then stroll the grounds of Glenwood Cemetery.

For where to stay, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, go to the Houston trip itinerary builder.

Calgary, Canada to Houston is an approximately 8-hour flight. You can also drive. The time zone difference when traveling from Calgary to Houston is 1 hour. Prepare for much hotter weather when traveling from Calgary in December: high temperatures in Houston hover around 22°C and lows are around 11°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Wed) to allow time to travel to Bocas Town.

Things to do in Houston

#Museums, #Historic Sites, #Nature
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Museum of Fine Arts, Houston ©
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Water Wall ©
Water Wall
Glenwood Cemetery ©
Glenwood Cemetery

3
days
Bocas Town, Panama

The colorful and relaxed Bocas Town has a welcoming atmosphere, with the modestly sized urban area showcasing typical Caribbean clapboard houses and home to a mixed community from across the world.
Step off the beaten path and head to Playa Estrella and Scuba & Snorkeling. Step out of the city life by going to Boca del Drago and Bastimentos National Park. The adventure continues: soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers and see the interesting displays at Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.

To see photos, traveler tips, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Bocas Town day trip app

Fly from Houston to Bocas Town in 8.5 hours. You'll lose 1 hour traveling from Houston to Bocas Town due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Houston in December, expect nights in Bocas Town to be much hotter, around 28°C, while days are somewhat warmer, around 28°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Sun) early enough to travel to Panama City.

Things to do in Bocas Town

#Outdoors, #Beaches, #Parks
Accommodations
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Scuba & Snorkeling
Boca del Drago ©
Boca del Drago
Spas & Wellness

4
days
Panama City, Panama

Panama City ©
Arguably the most modern of Central American cities, Panama City boasts a shimmering skyline of glass skyscrapers.
Step out of the city life by going to Punta Culebra Nature Center and Soberania National Park. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Museo del Canal Interoceanico de Panama and El Arco Chato. Change things up with these side-trips from Panama City: Gamboa (Nature & Wildlife Tours & Panama Rainforest Discovery Center). It doesn't end there: get to know the fascinating history of Casco Viejo and take in the architecture and atmosphere at Iglesia de San Francisco de Asis.

Make your Panama City itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

Getting from Bocas Town to Panama City by flight takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of ferry, bus, and flight; or do a combination of ferry, taxi, and bus. Traveling from Bocas Town in December, you will find days in Panama City are a bit warmer (36°C), and nights are about the same (28°C). On the 28th (Thu), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Drake Bay.

Things to do in Panama City

#Wildlife, #Parks, #Tours

Side Trip

Gamboa
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Casco Viejo ©
Casco Viejo
Museo del Canal Interoceanico de Panama ©
Panama Rainforest Discovery Center ©
Panama Rainforest Discovery Center

2
days
Drake Bay, Costa Rica

Drake Bay ©
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Fri): head off the coast to Cano Island. Keep things going the next day: indulge your taste buds at Minisuper Drake and then get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour.

To find more things to do, reviews, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Drake Bay tour itinerary planning tool .

Drive from Panama City to Drake Bay in 9.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly. Traveling from Panama City to Drake Bay, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 31st (Sun) so you can travel to Tortuguero.

Things to do in Drake Bay

#Wildlife, #Nature, #Parks
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Cano Island ©
Cano Island
Nature & Wildlife Tours

4
days
Tortuguero, Costa Rica

Tortuguero ©
One of Costa Rica's least accessible destinations, Tortuguero sits within an eponymous national park and remains accessible only by plane or boat.
Take a break from the city and head to Tortuguero National Park and Playa Bonita. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Veragua Rainforest Park and Catedral Sagrado Corazon de Jesus. Step out of Tortuguero with an excursion to Mercado Municipal in Puerto Limon--about 1h 50 min away. There's more to do: choose your vessel at Tortuguero Adventures and examine the collection at Sea Turtle Conservancy.

To find photos, reviews, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Tortuguero holiday site .

Getting from Drake Bay to Tortuguero by combination of taxi, flight, and shuttle takes about 8 hours. Other options: do a combination of ferry, bus, and shuttle. In December, daytime highs in Tortuguero are 30°C, while nighttime lows are 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 4th (Thu) to allow time for travel to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Tortuguero

#Wildlife, #Parks, #Nature

Side Trip

Puerto Limon
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Tortuguero National Park ©
Tortuguero National Park
Tortuguero Adventures ©
Tortuguero Adventures
Playa Bonita ©
Playa Bonita

3
days
Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Tamarindo ©
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Visit Playa Avellana and Samara Beach for some beach relaxation. Step out of the city life by going to Playa Conchal and Tamarindo Beach. Explore Tamarindo's surroundings by going to Costa Rica Sailing Center (in Playa Potrero) and Koss Art Gallery (in Playa Samara). There's more to do: stop by Lydia Beech Art.

To see more things to do and tourist information, refer to the Tamarindo trip itinerary builder tool .

Traveling by combination of shuttle and flight from Tortuguero to Tamarindo takes 6 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle, flight, and taxi; or do a combination of shuttle, taxi, flight, and bus. Expect somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Tortuguero in January: highs in Tamarindo hover around 38°C, while lows dip to 25°C. You will have some time to spend on the 8th (Mon) before leaving for San Jose.

Things to do in Tamarindo

#Outdoors, #Beaches, #Parks

Side Trips

Playa Samara, Costa Rica Sailing Center, Playa Conchal
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Samara Beach ©
Samara Beach
Playa Conchal ©
Playa Conchal
Playa Avellana ©
Playa Avellana

3
days
San Jose, Costa Rica

San Jose ©
A trip to San Jose, the capital, commercial center, and cultural hub of Costa Rica, gives you a chance to experience the lively atmosphere and rich cultural past of this vibrant country.
Precolumbian Gold Museum and National Museum (Museo Nacional) are good opportunities to explore the local culture. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Costa Rica's Craft Brewing Co. and Ruins of the Church of Carthage. Change things up with a short trip to La Paz Waterfall Gardens in Vara Blanca (about 1h 20 min away). The adventure continues: take in the exciting artwork at Galeria Namu.

For photos, more things to do, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read our San Jose journey maker website .

You can fly from Tamarindo to San Jose in 2.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus, flight, and taxi; or drive. Traveling from Tamarindo in January, expect San Jose to be little chillier, temps between 30°C and 21°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Wed) early enough to travel to Dangriga.

Things to do in San Jose

#Museums, #Nature, #Parks

Side Trips

La Paz Waterfall Gardens, Ruins of the Church of Carthage
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National Museum (Museo Nacional) ©
National Museum (Museo Nacional)
La Paz Waterfall Gardens ©
La Paz Waterfall Gardens
Galeria Namu ©
Galeria Namu

8
days
Dangriga, Belize

Dangriga ©
Dangriga, formerly known as Stann Creek Town, is a town in southern Belize, located on the Caribbean coast at the mouth of the North Stann Creek River. Step out of the city life by going to Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Preserve and Mesoamerican Reef (Belize Barrier Reef). Get a sense of the local culture at Maya Center Mayan Museum and Gulisi Garifuna Museum. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Dangriga: Armenia (Lamanai Chocolate Company & Belize True Adventures) and Belmopan (St Herman's Cave, Blue Hole National Park, & more). There's still lots to do: hike along Outback Trails, shop like a local with Studio Gallery Cayetano, indulge your taste buds at Marie Sharp's Fine Foods Limited, and take in the dramatic scenery at Davis Falls.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Dangriga trip itinerary planning site .

You can drive from San Jose to Dangriga in 25 hours. Alternatively, you can fly. January in Dangriga sees daily highs of 32°C and lows of 24°C at night. On the 20th (Sat), you'll travel to San Pedro.

Things to do in Dangriga

#Parks, #Nature, #Outdoors

Side Trips

Belmopan, Armenia, Outback Trails, Mesoamerican Reef (Belize Barrier Reef)
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Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Preserve ©
Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Preserve
Blue Hole National Park ©
Blue Hole National Park
St Herman's Cave ©
St Herman's Cave

4
days
San Pedro, Belize

San Pedro evolved from small fishing village and now represents one of the most visited locations in Belize.
Step off the beaten path and head to River Rafting & Tubing and Spas & Wellness. Get some cultural insight at The Gallery of San Pedro and Belizean Arts. Go for a jaunt from San Pedro to Caye Caulker to see The Estuary of Caye Caulker about 1h 05 min away. Spend the 21st (Sun) among aquatic life with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Next up on the itinerary: explore the gorgeous colors at Shark Ray Alley, look for all kinds of wild species at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, indulge your taste buds at Moho Chocolate, and look for gifts at 12 Belize.

To find photos, reviews, maps, and tourist information, refer to the San Pedro trip tool .

Traveling by flight from Dangriga to San Pedro takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and shuttle; or ride a ferry. January in San Pedro sees daily highs of 32°C and lows of 24°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Wed) so you can fly to Belize City.

Things to do in San Pedro

#Wildlife, #Adventure, #Tours

Side Trips

Shark Ray Alley, The Estuary of Caye Caulker
Accommodations
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River Rafting & Tubing
Hol Chan Marine Reserve ©
Hol Chan Marine Reserve
Scuba & Snorkeling

2
days
Belize City, Belize

Belize City ©
Belize's biggest urban center, Belize City is a culturally diverse seaside destination.
Kick off your visit on the 24th (Wed): enjoy the sea views from Baron Bliss Lighthouse. On the next day, look for gifts at Caribbean Spice Belize, get a sense of history and politics at Government House, then get a new perspective on nature at St John's Cathedral, and finally admire nature's wide array of creatures at The Belize Zoo.

To see where to stay, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Belize City day trip planner

Belize City is just a stone's throw from San Pedro. In January in Belize City, expect temperatures between 32°C during the day and 24°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Fri) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Belize City

#Historic Sites, #Parks, #Outdoors

Side Trip

The Belize Zoo
Accommodations
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St John's Cathedral ©
St John's Cathedral
The Belize Zoo ©
The Belize Zoo
Splash Wave Private Tours ©
Splash Wave Private Tours

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