Cruise ships dock in the Santo Tomas, Guatemala's Caribbean port. The city has little to offer the visitor, but regular buses link the harbor to Puerto Barrios. Depending on the length of your Guatemala stop, head out from here to explore some of this Central American country's varied attractions.
Stone temples and the Great Pyramid emerge from the exotic tropical splendor of Guatemalan jungle at the sprawling ancient Mayan complex, Tikal. Get there on a day excursion from Puerto Barrios.
Endangered parrots and hundreds of bird species flit across the estuaries in the marshy lowlands of Punta de Manabique. A guided tour is the only way to explore this isolated region as there are no roads into Manabique.
Smooth green river slips between the shadows of fringed palms, slate gray cliffs and tumbling tropical foliage. A boat trip along the Rio Dulce, the river connecting the isolated town of Livingston to road access, is a splendid way to see traditional villages and spectacular scenery. Take the sail easy, stopping to swim and fish. Drop off the face of the map along one of the tributaries, where hidden guesthouses offer peace and solitude.
Santo Tomas de Castilla is just east of Puerto Barrios on the Caribbean coast, about 200 miles northeast of Guatemala City.