Academy International returns with an unparalleled adventure of exploration deep into the heart of Guatemala! Join our passionate and experienced international instructors for two weeks of authentic interaction with community leaders, involved and immersive service, heart warming home-stays and ample opportunities to soak in the natural splendors that this vibrant Central American gem has to offer. Our travels will begin in the shadows of volcanoes in the quaint mountain town of Antigua. This ancient hamlet’s cobblestone streets will carry you deep into the history of the Mayan culture and provide an idyllic setting for daily Spanish language classes and day excursions into the highlands surrounding town. Travelers will work with local NGO’s serving the greater region of Antigua and learn about the creative efforts being applied to issues within the community. Our mid-trip adventure will have you exploring Guatemala on foot during a 3-day point-to-point trek throughout the verdant mountains of the Guatemalan highlands. Starting in the town of Xela, our group will hike a portion of each day to through small and remote mountain villages and ending each night in a group home and sharing meals and stories with our community hosts. Our final day of trekking will include a sunrise ascent to the ‘Mirador’ that overlooks the stunning and picturesque volcanic lake of Atitlan. Finally, we are off to the Pacific Coast for a ‘Surf and Service’ adventure in collaboration with the non-profit La Choza Chula (LCC). Located in the coastal village of El Paredón, LCC works on connecting local communities with travelers in an effort to promote conservation and sustainable tourism. Days on the coast will be a blend of surf instruction, sea turtle projects, eco-tours and community interaction. Join Academy International for a unique and immersive travel experience that will celebrate the rich history and stunning landscapes of this captivating country! This is Guatemala from Sea to Summit!
Program Itinerary: *Schedule subject to change
Day 1: Group flight meet in TBD Hub City for departure to Guatemala City. Private transport to Antigua. Meet homestays, dinner and evening with families.
Day 2 - 5: Morning Spanish School with afternoon group activities (market, eco filtro, museos, cooking, dancing, city walks) and homestays for dinner.
Day 6: Transpo to Xela – orientation for trek. Group dinner and stay in Xela.
Day 7: Begin Trek. Stay in the community center of Santa Maria Ixtahuacan.
Day 8: Continue trek. Stay with local family in village.
Day 9: Alpine start to mirador for a view of smoking volcanoes over Lago Atitlan. End in small village of San Pedro. Breakfast and lunch while exploring the town. Afternoon transport to Pacific Coast and the village of El Paredon. Arrive in the evening, dinner and meet n greet talk with La Choza Chula folks. Stay as a group in a our own private surf hostel.
Day 10 - 12: La Choza Chula days. Surf lessons, turtle eco tour, cooking class with local family, global citizen workshop, futbol, beach time, etc. Group stays at surf hostel.
Day 13: Chill morning for reflection, closing activities, etc. Leave El Paredon after lunch. Arrive in Antigua for final group dinner and hotel.
Day 14: Early AM transport to airport. Fly home.