August 16-24/26, 2019 – XELA AID LUXURY SERVICE, GRAND TIKAL Option
Theme: “Service in Luxury, with Grandeur of Tikal (Option)”
Registration Deadline: June 25, 2019
Trip Leaders: Kevin Sanders and Georgia Fea, with Mel Dinkel and Leslie Baer Dinkel
Trip Cost (Double/Triple Occupancy): Cost: $2759 ($2259 w/Tikal opt-out)
Nights: 10 (8, with Tikal opt-out)
See flight information at the bottom of this description
August 16, 17 – Upon our arrival in Guatemala, we will be met at the airport by our Xela AID bus and then travel to the magnificent colonial city of Antigua, founded in the 16th century. We'll enjoy a hosted dinner at a one of Antigua's finest eateries. In Antigua over the next couple days, you will have an opportunity to do a walking cultural tour or photography tour of the city, explore jade and chocolate production, and more! If you’re up for a moderate hike, you can take in the views from Cerro de la Cruz high above the landscape! You can also explore the ruins, go shopping on your own, or simply relax on the lovely grounds of our hotel. You'll be hosted to a delicious buffet dinner at Antigua's visually stunning and world renown Santa Domingo Monastery.
August 18 – We will travel into the Guatemalan highlands, and to the beautiful city of Quetzaltenango (“Xela”) at 7500 feet where we will be housed in the city's finest accommodations just off the historic Parque Central. During our comfortable stay in Quetzaltenango, all breakfasts and lunches are included. An optional group dinner will be arranged every other night at one of the local eateries.
August 19, 20, 21 – For our service experience, we will travel each day to the village of San Martín to undertake individual projects where your talents and interests will have been matched to need. Experience the thrill of getting to know the youth and adults of this Mám-Maya village. Here, the rich traditions of the past are still being practiced today. The local heritage still exists even as the young people work to become competitive in the job market so they can create a better life for their families. Each day promises advnture and fulfilling, unique experiences! Surprises await, too. Several afternoons after our work days we will be able to explore the local culture.
August 22 – After breakfast and packing up, we'll head for Lake Atitlan, one of the world’s most stunning destinations! We will take a short boat ride in our private launches to reach our magnificent accommodations. Here you will see views of soaring volcanos from our beautiful cabanas that are perched on the side of an ancient volcano. Here you can rest in a hammock, read a book, or take in optional adventures including zip lining, climbing a volcano, or visiting small villages. You can travel by boat to Panajachel, a renown marketplace featuring arts, crafts and gift items from the four corners of Guatemala. Delicious meals will be available at the hotel as desired.
** Dinners are included at Lake Atitlan. **
August 23 – Lake Atitlan is the perfect place to get some exercise or simply just relax—it’s up to you! You can catch a boat in the morning and explore villages around the lake, or hike with your trip leaders to the 16th Century church at Santa Cruz while enjoying stunning vistas along the way. Kayaking is also complimentary for all Xela AID guests. There are many other optional activities we can arrange for you like zip-lining or climbing the daunting San Pedro volcano. No matter what you choose, your visit to this destination will not disappoint. Lake Atitlan been described as “one of the world’s most beautiful places.” It will be sure to dazzle! Logistics dictate that although many of us will spend several additional nights together in Tikal, Lake Atitlan will be the site of our "farewell" dinner celebration for our Xela AID adventure.
Note: Round-trip flight and ground transportion, breakfasts, lunches and dinners are all included with Tikal option!
August 24 - In the morning, we will bid farewell to the beautiful lake as we head to Guatemala City. We will say farewell to those not participating in the Tikal option. Those continuing on will fly to Flores, Peten. Upon our arrival, we'll take a comfortable bus ride through the tropical landscape to Tikal National Park, home of howler monkeys, crocodiles, exotic birds and yes, the jaguar! We will settle in to our comfortable jungle accommodation, then retire after a hearty, hosted group dinner.
August 25 - After our hosted breakfast, we will explore the wonders of Tikal with a professional guide. Lunch is also included in our tour. After lunch, we'll be able to visit one or both of the museums before heading back in to our lodge. In the evening enjoy a hosted last dinner in the jungle!
August 26 - This is a free morning when early risers can go on an optional bird-watching experience or enjoy and early-morning tour where you'll be able to watch the sun rise from atop a temple! (When you select this option, it includes both park entry and your guide). Others can sleep in, and after your hosted breakfast, more fully explore Tikal with friends from the group. We will leave early to mid-morning to make our way back to the airport at Flores and back to Guatemala City to catch our flights. You’ll take with you memories and new friendships sure to last a lifetime!
FLIGHT BOOKING INSTRUCTIONS
Note: These suggested flights are from Los Angeles. If you are not traveling from Los Angeles, or you are but choose a different outbound option, MAKE SURE to arrive in Guatemala no later than 6 PM August 16th to join in group transportation. See below important information on outbound flights. Whichever time you arrive, someone will be at the airport to meet you!
OUTBOUND FLIGHTS (Reminder - Must arrive in Guatemala City by 6 AM August 16th, 2019 - Thank you!)
RETURN FLIGHT TIKAL GROUP - Please book a return flight that leaves after 6 PM on August 26th. Please do NOT book an earlier outbound flight, as we will be flying in from Tikal to make this flight. Suggested: Avianca AV640 leaving GC on August 26 between 6-8 PM (time listing varies) arriving LAX at 11:40 PM
THOSE RETURNING AUGUST 24th (Opt-Out of Tikal) - This is the inbound/return-home flight we suggest unless you plan to stay over in Guatemala after the group leaves. In that case, please book a flight that leaves after 6 PM on August 24th, as we will be coming from Lake Atitlan to make this flight. Suggested: Avianca AV640 leaving GC on August 24 between 6-8 PM (time listing varies) arriving LAX at 11:40 PM.
Please feel free to contact one of your group leaders regarding any questions you may have!
|Event End Date||08-26-2019|
|Application Start Date||11-26-2018|
|Cut off date||08-05-2019|
|Cost (Dbl/Tpl Occu.)||$2259 / $2759 (with Tikal Option)|
|Location||Xela AID Guatemala|