Holidays & Sabbaticals to El Salvador – In a Nutshell
A land of volcanoes, sparkling crater lakes and world-class surf breaks, El Salvador has more to offer than meets the eye. This compact Central American country is fringed by rugged Pacific beaches which remain relatively empty compared to its neighbours in Nicaragua and Costa Rica, while the inland regions are rich with coffee plantations, volcanoes and tropical forest which invite plenty of opportunities for adventure. Explore colonial cities, discover areas of rugged natural beauty and get your culture fix by visiting majestic Mayan ruins.
How to Get to El Salvador
Although you can drive or bus across the border from Guatemala, many arrive by air into San Salvador. There are direct flights from major US cities (4-5 hours) and flights from Europe are generally via the US (18-22 hours). To get around, a mix of private transfer, self-drive, or long-distance buses offer you a chance to admire the scenery.
When & Weather – El Salvador
The weather is sunny and spring-like all year round, with temperatures changing through altitude rather than climate. It can get hot on the coast and is cooler up in the mountains. November to April is the Dry Season; May to October is Green Season, with most rain falling in September and October. It’s mainly limited to late-afternoon downpours so don’t let this put you off. The best time for surfers to visit is from April to October when you’ll find the best waves. Temperatures range between 13°C (56°F) and 28°C (82°F).
Who will El Salvador Appeal To?
Adventure lovers! Travelling here is still often off the beaten track, with limited tourist infrastructure. In particular, El Salvador is suited to:
- Active travellers
- Tourist-trail avoiders
- Solo travellers
- Nature lovers
El Salvador offers a range of characterful hotels, eco lodges, rural ranches, beach cabanas and simple homestays in remote villages.
Off The Beaten Path
- Pay a visit to a playful colony of spider monkeys at Hacienda la Carrera.
- Ride on horseback to Guazapa, accompanied by an ex-guerilla guide and visit important sites from El Salvador’s civil war.
- Explore the Joya de Ceren archaeological site for an insight into El Salvador’s pre-Columbian history.
- Observe hawksbill turtles nesting in the Bahia de Jiquilisco (May – October).
- Witness El Salvador’s vibrant birdlife in the Cerro Verde National Park – spot hummingbirds, emerald toucanets and motmots.
El Salvador Experiences you shouldn’t miss:
- Drive La Ruta de las Flores (Route of Flowers) through El Salvador’s mountains, visiting charming rural communities and enjoying beautiful scenery.
- Surf the waves at Playa El Cuco.
- Try pupusas, the most popular national snack. These stuffed corn tortillas are delicious, cheap and filling.
Get involved with turtle conservation at the ICAPO project in Bahia de Jiquilisco. ICAPO aims to rescue and preserve the local population of hawksbill and black turtles – you’ll be able to get hands-on with weighing and measuring the turtles and even taking skin samples, guided by local vets and biologists.
Our experienced team will guide you through a number of ideas based on how you would like to experience El Salvador.
Consider visiting El Salvador in combination with neighbouring Guatemala and Honduras, or as part of a Grand Central American journey from Panama to Belize.
Browse our gallery for inspiration and read the sample itinerary below to whet your appetite.
This sabbatical itinerary showcases slow travel through El Salvador covering highlights and off-the-beaten-path regions, mixing remote villages with boutique beach retreats, conservation-focused activities and adrenaline-fuelled experiences.
No matter how long you wish to travel, we’ll guide you through the planning process to ensure a trip is carefully pieced together to suit your interests, pace of travel and budget.
Contact us to start planning a holiday or sabbatical to El Salvador.