Tikal and Yaxhá Birding

Relaxed Tikal and Yaxhá Birding Tour with CAYAYA BIRDING

This is a relaxed and comfortable short birding tour to Tikal and Yaxhá in northern Guatemala. Both archaeological sites are located in the Maya Biosphere Reserve in the northern lowlands of Guatemala, which is part of the largest Neotropical forest areas after the Amazon. The ancient Mayan pyramids and ceremonial roads in the middle of the jungle provide impressive scenery for bird and wildlife observations.

CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal and Yaxhá birding tour

The vast forest of the Maya Biosphere Reserve does still hold a quite complete set of Central American biodiversity, including top predators such as Crested Eagle and Jaguar. Thus a visit to two national parks within the biosphere reserve, Tikal National Park and Yaxhá-Nakum-Naranjo National Park, promises a great nature experience.

Ornate Hawk-Eagle, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá birding tour
Ornate Hawk-Eagle Spizaetus ornatus in the forest canopy.

More than 400 bird species have been recorded in the northern lowlands of Guatemala. Distinctive species sets can be observed in tall rain forest, Yucatán scrub, open savanna-like areas, and wetlands. Regional endemics of the Yucatan peninsula, southern Mexico and northern Central America usually seen during this tour include, Ocellated Turkey, Wedge-tailed Sabrewing, Chestnut-colored Woodpecker, Mayan Antthrush, Tawny-winged Woodcreeper, White-collared Manakin, Yucatan Flycatcher, Yellow-bellied Tyrannulet, Olive-backed Euphonia, Green-backed Sparrow, Black-cowled Oriole, Gray-throated Chat, and Black-throated Shrike-Tanager.

Yaxhá, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá birding tour
Yaxhá: view over Laguna Yaxhá from the top of Temple 216.

The most exotic looking birds to be expected during this tour include Keel-billed Toucan, Gartered, Black-headed, and Slaty-tailed Trogon, Mealy, Red-lored, White-fronted, Brown-hooded, and White crowned parrots, White-collared and Red-capped manakins, as well as Bare-throated Tiger-Heron.

Keel-billed Toucan, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá birding tour
Keel-billed Toucan Ramphastos sulfuratus in the rainforest.

Several raptor species can be seen soaring over the forest, or with some good luck perched in the canopy, including Ornate, Black, and Black-and-white Hawk-Eagle, White Hawk, Gray-headed and Hook-billed, and Double-toothed kites. Tikal is one of the best sites to see the rare Orange-breasted Falcon.

During the CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá birding tour you can also appreciate an overview of the history of these two ancient Mayan cities.

  • 4 days / 3 nights birding tour from/to Flores
  • Birding Hotspots included: Tikal and Yaxhá.
  • More than 400 bird species have been recorded in this region.
  • Atlantic slope specialties such as Orange-breasted Falcon, Ocellated Turkey, Black-throated Shrike-Tanager.
  • Waterbirds: Limpkin, Ruddy Crake, Gray-necked Wood-Rail, and others.
  • Accommodation: comfortable hotels and lodges.
  • What birders say about CAYAYA BIRDING tours to Tikal & Yaxhá
  • How to book this CAYAYA BIRDING tour.

Optional services

  • Flight from/to Guatemala City to Flores airport (Santa Elena).

Seen during CAYAYAY BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá Tour

Tikal, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá birding tour
Tikal: ancient Mayan temples I and II emerging from the rainforest canopy.
White-collared Manakin, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Male White-collared Manakin Manacus candei in the forest understory.
Black-throated Shrike-Tanager, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Male Black-throated Shrike-Tanager Lanio aurantius.
Ocellated Turkey, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Ocellated Turkey Meleagris ocellata.
White-crowned Parrot, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
White-crowned Parrot Pionus senilis watching out over the forest canopy.
Plain Antvireo, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Plain Antvireo Dysithamnus mentalis is a widespread Neotropical species, reaching in the humid forests of the Yucatán peninsula its northern edge of the range.
Pheasant Cuckoo, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Pheasant Cuckoo Dromococcyx phasianellus in the forest of the Maya Biosphere Reserve
Orange-breasted Falcon, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Orange-breasted Falcon Falco deiroleucus in the Maya Biosphere Reserve.
Limpkin, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Limpkin Aramus guarauna in a wetland in the Maya Biosphere Reserve.
Red-lored Parrot, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Red-lored Parrot Amazona autumnalis in the forest canopy.
Hook-billed Kite, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Hook-billed Kite Chondrohierax uncinatus soaring over the Maya Biosphere Reserve.
Yaxhá archaeological site, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Ancient Mayan building at the Yaxhá achaeological site.
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron Nyctanassa violacea in a wetland in the Maya Biosphere Reserve.
Great Tinamou, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Great Tinamou Tinamus major on the forest floor.
Gray-throated Chat, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Immature male Gray-throated Chat Granatellus sallaei in Yucatán scrub in the Maya Biosphere Reserve.
Ruddy Crake, CAYAYA BIRDING Tikal & Yaxhá tour
Ruddy Crake Laterallus ruber in a wetland in the Maya Biosphere Reserve.

What birders say about CAYAYA BIRDING tours to Tikal and Yaxhá

December 2018, CAYAYA BIRDING three day tours in Tikal
"We had three fantastic days in Tikal with Luis as our guide. He really took good care of us, and managed to combine excellent birding for me and my son with archeological guiding for all four of us. I can really recommend CAYAYA BIRDING and Luis for arranging a trip to Tikal."

December 2018, CAYAYA BIRDING days in Tikal
"Guatemala: a great country for birding trips. Great birds and fantastic landscapes with volcanoes, some of them active. On this trip we saw 370+ birds including top birds such as Horned Guan, Fulvous Owl, Orange-breasted Falcon, and so on. Excellent guiding by Knut Eisermann. Final birding in the Mayan monumental historical site of Tikal, with more than 120 birds seen in that area."
Stefan Johansson, Sweden

November 2018, 10-day birding tour through Guatemala including Tikal for Atlanta Audubon Society
"I was able to organize a 10 day trip with Claudia Avendaño for an 11 person group I was leading for Atlanta Audubon. We had a spectacular time! We were able to visit the western highlands as well as the lowland forests at Tikal National Park. In addition to finding life birds and seeing amazing places, this trip had a special focus on shade grown coffee and the Wood Thrush. CAYAYA BIRDING did a great job helping us create a customized itinerary that balanced birding, culture, conservation, and educational opportunities. Claudia was skillful at noticing the needs and desires of each particular group member and adjusting accordingly. She was well prepared and researched and understood what our group desired. The lodging, transportation, and local guides all met or exceeded expectations. I cannot recommend CAYAYA BIRDING and Claudia Avendaño enough and absolutely plan on birding with them again in the future. We were able to see 275 species in 10 days and everyone left happy and healthy."
Adam Betuel, Atlanta Audubon Society.

November 2018, CAYAYA BIRDING day in Tikal
"Claudia Avendaño was an exceptional guide on our recent 8-day trip. We covered a wide variety of habitats and saw so many amazingly beautiful birds. Claudia's attention to detail made the trip go smoothly--even when we had unexpected delays. Tikal was special because of my long-time fascination with the Mayans so our time there was a great combination of birding and archeology. Luis was a very professional and knowledgeable guide at Tikal. I've described the trip to my friends as FANTASTIC! I'm still reliving the many and varied experiences we had. "
Karen Lindauer, Atlanta, Georgia.

November 2018, 1-week birding tour in the Guatemalan highlands and Tikal
"Knut Eisermann provided my son and I with a wonderful week of birdwatching in Guatemala. He is warm, friendly and fun! His birding skills are second to none. We had a wonderful time and I can't say enough good things about our time with him."
Michael Robinson, Washington, USA.

October 2018, CAYAYA BIRDING day tour in Tikal and in Antigua Guatemala
"My first time in Guatemala will be unforgettable thanks to Claudia and Luis of CAYAYA BIRDING. They both were professional, excellent guides and most of all great people. Everything went as planned and I had a great time."
Edwin French, Chile.

February 2018, CAYAYA BIRDING day tours in Tikal and Yaxhá
"Luis was a great guide - extremely knowledgeable about birds, natural history, as well as the cultural history of the area. His ability to detect and identify birds by call was extraordinary, and he helped us see an amazing variety of them. His energy was also remarkable - always willing to get out, from before dawn to late in the evening."
Peter Dunwiddie, Seattle, Washington, USA

March 2017, CAYAYA BIRDING half day tour in Tikal
"I just wanted to thank you and Luis for making our visit to Tikal such a memorable experience! I appreciated your prompt reply to my request for birding information and the ease in arranging our half day tour. It was a real plus to have a guide as knowledgable and personable as Luis who made the tour an unforgettable venture!"
Rita Garczynski

February 2005, Tikal-Yaxhá Birding Tour
"Claudia’s expertise and hospitality is a joy and I can only recommend bird-watching with her. You will not only see the birds but also improve your identifying the different calls. I shall definitely tour with them again!"
Eva Kiefer, Zurich, Switzerland.

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