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Is there a better way to cap off a day of pristine reef diving and heart-pumping adventure sports than by sipping a sunset cocktail? Didn’t think so! From ziplining to deep sea fishing to exploring the military-protected archipelago of Cayos Cochinos, the Honduran island of Roatan is a playground for lovers of water sports and ecotourism. Landlubbers will flip for the Carambola Botanical Gardens, a tour of the Stone Castle Cameo Factory or exploring the beaches on horseback.
Ambergris Caye hovers in a holiday sweet spot: just enough amenities to make it exciting, but not so overdeveloped that you’re tripping over flip-flopped tourists. A mangrove swamp is the eye of this white beach island, the largest in Belize, and golf carts are the main form of transportation along the sandy roads. Reef divers drool over the Belize Barrier Reef and the Blue Hole, a 400-feet deep circle of limestone that teems with angelfish, elkhorn coral, cleaner shrimp and stalactites.
Your morning in Nosara: Wake to the sounds of the jungle. Walk two minutes to Playa Guiones and do a few yoga poses at sunrise while surfers ride the waves. Wander north to Playa Pelada for a swim and spectacular views of the Pacific. Sound idyllic? Nosara, with its beaches free of developments, its tide pools, plus ziplining, wildlife rescue and more, is perfect for your extended holiday.
Surf’s always up in the Costa Rican beach town of Santa Teresa. Bright sun and gleaming sands make the perfect backdrop to hang ten in the crystal-clear waters, and fishing, snorkeling and kite-surfing are popular among holiday-makers. Yoga and spa services are a must for the ultimate relaxation, and, at night, catch a glorious sunset on the same beach where earlier you caught a wave.
Tamarindo is a prime spot for surfing and sportfishing, diving and sunning. Nesting leatherback turtles do their thing along the beaches from October to May and, for some nesting of your own, gorgeous beach houses, B&Bs and luxury hotels line the sunny sands. Shopping and dining options are superb and plentiful, perfect for sampling the true flavours of Costa Rica.
It’s true: parts of Belize are getting touristy. But San Ignacio remains rustic, making it a great base for budget-friendly tropical adventure travel. Canoe on the Macal River, or walk to Mayan ruins at Cahal Pec (just be warned: it's uphill).
Antigua Guatamala is known as the best-preserved Spanish colonial city in Central America. Stroll the cobblestone streets, lounge with the locals in Central Park on sunny afternoons or hike up one of the volcanoes overlooking the city for amazing views.
You can easily fill a week with activities in and around the mountain village of Boquete. Tours of every sort—jungle tours, coffee estate tours, hiking tours. Adventures for every age—ATVs, zip lines, white water rafting. Or just relax and let your travelling companions do all the adventuring. Boquete's good for taking it easy, too.
This beautiful fishing village is a Nicaraguan gem, a magnet for surfers and sunbathers. At night, the beach still pulses with activity, thanks to a few popular beachfront bars and nightclubs. Surf clubs abound—catch a wave with an expert instructor if you’re a hang-ten rookie, trying to hang with the surfer big boys.