Visit Tikal: The Largest Mayan Ruins

Whilst staying in Flores, we decided to pay a visit to Tikal, the worlds largest Mayan ruins and considered to be the central point ruins for Central America and were built as far back as 1000BC.

Situated around an hour and a half drive from Flores the ruins are breath taking to see, despite 90% of them still being covered by rain forest.

Booking Tickets For Tikal

We made our booking directly through our hostel as they provided an excellent tour / travel service. 

For 90 Belize Dollars (£7.50) you have the choice of the Sunset (leaves at 12:30pm) or standard tour (leaves at 4:00am). This also included return transport and an English/Spanish speaking guide - which I would highly recommend getting. 

Alternatively, if you want to do Tikal alone, then you can arrange for a local collectivo bus to take you tree and back. This costs 70 Belize Dollars (£5.83).

When entering the park their is also an additional entrance fee which everyone has to pay. This is 150 Belize Dollars each (£12.50). 

Essentials for Tikal

First of all there are a few essentials that I would recommend taking with you for this trip. 

1) Water and Snacks: There are cafés here but it is very expensive just a banana and cookies should be fine. You will be trekking on the tour or around 3-4 hours. 

2) Bug Spray and Repellant: Without a doubt you will be bitten by some kind of bug as you move through the jungle. There are a lot of mosquitos and ants in there, so be prepared. 

3) Comfortable / Long Clothing: When walking around Tikal it is stupidly warm and humid. Try wearing loose long trousers and tops. I opted for linen shorts, comfortable tennis shoes, a vest and loose shirt. My legs got bitten a lot by mozzies but the rest of my body was fine. 

4) Camera and Torch: As I mentioned, Tikal is a spectacular site to see, especially when you climb up the highest temple. Your cameras are a must!

If you choose the sunset tour make sure you bring a torch with you. Trust me, as soon as that sun goes down you can not see a thing when walking through the rainforest back to your camp. We used the torches on our iPhones which worked perfectly. 

What to expect from your Tikal Tour

When arriving at the tour entrance, we were greeted by or guide Ruben. Who explained to us all about Mayan heritage and that, despite Spanish being the spoken language, today there are still 23 active Mayan languages throughout Central America. 

He also told us that Guatemala means colourful land in Mayan cultures. This is why I loved having a guide as he made every breath taking temple that little bit special with his stories of their past.

During your tour, you will be doing a good 3-4 hours of walking through rainforest, rocks and steps, so be sure to wear comfortable shoes and socks.

We explored the different temples and made our way to the highest temple, which was reserved for priests only.

After climbing up the steps we reached the top and was greeted by a mass of rain forest and four temple peaks rising above it. Whilst on our way down we saw a range of wildlife, including howler and spider monkeys, frogs and wild pigs.

Overall, it was a magical experience and a must-see if you're planning on visiting Central America. 
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