El Zotz – Tikal Trail FAQ
Many travelers interested on trekking to El Zotz - Tikal have questions about the experience and what to need bring. We’ve answered a few of the more common ones here.
Who operated El Zotz - Tikal?
The expedition is operated by Turismo Aventura (transportation and meals) and the people Maya Q’eqchí of El Cruce Dos Aguadas (community guides, mules, cooks, muleteers, equipment of camp) located 62 Km north of Flores.
What are the challenge of this trekking and camping?
It is a Sub-tropical humid forest, where the whole activity take place. It is 660 feet (200 mts) above sea level on average. Since this is a marine origin land we have no mountains to climb but slopes that you may find challenging. But is recommended to hikers a good physical condition, prepared to cope with long trails and rugged terrain.
The Mirador basin is a protected area located in the middle of the Maya Biosphere and it is not accessible by car or any means of transportation (road-less). There is no electricity or water or convenient toilet infrastructure along the trail and/or in the campsites. There is no cellular network neither. Toilet facilities on campsites are basic, some trekkers just prefer nature. Unfortunately, it is completely out of our hands.
Daily walking between 5-6 hrs. Is a challenging 3-day from Cruce Dos Aguadas village through maya jungle that tests the limits of mind, body, and spirit. While it is physically demanding, approx. 50km (33 mi) total distance. Hike remains within the reach of most reasonably fit travellers.
What is the best time of the year to make the Trek?
Petén is quite hot most of the year, we can consider that the best season is from December to May. The hottest season is from March to May and June to Nov. is the rainy season.
We recommend doing it from Nov. to May. The trail to El Zotz - Tikal is open all days in the year but in rainy season the routes can get muddy and swampy.
What to do with my luggage during the Trek?
You can ask your hotel to guard luggage for free during the Trek. But we can also gladly do it; just bring your luggage to our Agency the same day you start your Trek.
What to Pack on the trek to El Zotz - Tikal?
Keep in mind that all your personal belongings will have to be carried by yourself for at least 14 km. Therefore we recommend you to pack as light as possible.
All you will be required to carry is a daypack containing items you will need during the trek (camera, sunscreen, t-shirt, bugs-spray, personal hygienic items, personal first-AID kit etc.).
1 Backpack (water-proof), where you can carry all your personal items.
1 Daypack (water-proof) that you can carry yourself.
July, August, September, October, November: Rainy season. The foot-wear for this season is got to be water-proof, rubber-boots are recommended to bring along.
December, January, February (best time): This time of the year is fairly easy so hiking shoes are good enough.
March, April, May and June: This is the dry season so take in consideration that you will put with temperatures between: 90-109 Fahrenheit / 30-38 Celsius.
Feel free to bring your sandals as well to be used at the camp-sites, although it is important to use the ones with toe-protection.
What to wear:
July, August, September, and October: It is our rainy season therefore all your clothes may get soaked. We recommend you to put two or three sets of clothes in water-proof-bags so you can have dried ones at any time. Rain gear and towels.
November, December, January, and February: This are transitional months, we get affected by cool fronts, and therefore we recommend to bring sweaters and warm-clothes. We recommend you to put two or three sets of clothes in water-proof-bags so you can have dried ones at any time. Rain gear and towels.
March, April, and May: This is the hottest and most humid time of the year, and therefore light-clothes. As we tend to have occasional showers it is recommended to bring rain-gear.
All the above information needs to be taken as guide-line, but since weather is nearly impossible to predict take all the advice possible. Check weather fore-cast.
And don’t forget to bring:
Water container always with you, flashlight and batteries, broad-brim or peaked cap, sunblock, insect repellent, toiletries.
You also have to bring a copy of your passport with you on the trek, is preferable to leave the original I a safe deposit box or luggage (at the hotel).
How much should I tip to cooks, muleteers and guides?
A recommendation for tipping:
From $3USD to $5USD per day per person.
All tips should be delivered individually.
Is purified water available on the trek?
Yes, we will deliver purified water to the trek. We recommend that travelers bring their own refillable bottles to limit plastic waste.
Along the way we will come across small reservoirs (bodies of water).Where we wash our equipment. Also good for showers.
What type of food will we get on El Zotz-Tikal?
Our cooks prepare excellent high-energy meals appropriate for a trek of this nature. The menu usually includes pasta, rice, chicken, fresh fruit and vegetables and a variety of oatmeal, eggs and other breakfast foods. Vegetarian alternatives are available upon request at the time of booking.
Please let us know if you want vegetarian meals when you book your trek or if you have a special restriction.
No red meat (chicken & fish ok)
No fish (red meat and chicken ok)
Lactose-free (mild reactions only)
Gluten free (mild reactions only)
We deliver a detailed menu and the list of products that you wear for the trip. (Vegetables, eggs, fruit, milk, coffee, tea, sports drinks, etc.) This is very important to ensure that the quality and quantity of food during the trip. The cook or the guide cannot say no food or water, etc. because you know exactly what we deliver in their hands.
What are the requirements to trek El Zotz - Tikal?
There is no government restriction on the age limit for El Zotz- Tikal.
However as a responsible trekking company Turismo Aventura does not accept reservations for children under the age of 9 years old and adults over 67 years old.
All children under 18 years old must also be accompanied by an adult. We require that all of our trekkers over 60 years old hire the service of an extra muleteer with horse and bring a letter from your doctor confirming that you are fit to participate in the trek.
Bookings must be made as far in advance as possible. To be able to ensure a spot on the trek to El Zotz - Tikal we recommend that you purchase your trip at least 3 or 2 months in advance in low season (between May – June and September - October) and at least 4 or 3 months in advance in high season (Nov. to April).
The time with less rain and suggested best times to visit is from November to April. The rainy season is from June to October, rainfall is sporadic a couple of hours a day, and our trips are operated normally, keeping in mind occasional showers. In the Petén region the climate is generally hot throughout the year. December and January are the coolest months, ideal for travel time with blue skies and sunny days.
First of all we are located in Guatemala as country, most of the negative issues occur in Guatemala City. We are situated in the Northern most part of the country, El Petén. El Petén as region is the largest territory but the least populated one. The area where El Zotz Tikal Trek takes two protected areas are a biotope and Tikal National Park.
Why Turismo Aventura
Over 10 Years' Experience
Our proven track record allows travellers to book with confidence, safe in the knowledge they are travelling with an experienced tour operator. Recommended in Lonely Planet and hostel trails. We are a serious and honest company that will not lie to sell a service.
Every trek and tours are managed by our local office base, located in Flores, Petén. We are partners with the tourism committee of Cruce Dos Aguadas and Reino Kan brand.
Our local expertise makes us one of you best choices in the region. Our knowledge makes us find the right services for your safety and comfort, such as the right transportation, accommodation and flights or even a nice restaurant that will suit your preference and budget.
Our local commitment to our local staff consists in making sure that everyone gets paid accordingly to their role in the expedition as well as they get their assistance and training. All support staff and cooks work under the region’s best employment conditions and are fairly compensated for their efforts.
Offer two options to make the trek.
1. Private expedition from 2 people (you put the date)
2. Scheduled Departures
The best for everything
On-trip meals are prepared from fresh, locally sourced ingredients and we suggest the menu. High-quality tents and camping gear are set up and maintained by our support staff, freeing you up to get the most out of your experience. We add cushions in the tents for better comfort. Slipping bag are not necessary but feel free to bring your own.