AITO: The Association of Independent Tour Operators
A Passage Through Mexico

A Passage Through Mexico

A Passage Through Mexico Overview

This 13 day holiday takes you to some of Mexico's most iconic sites, from the fascinating Maya ruins of Chichén Itzá and the colourful streets of San Cristóbal, to the absorbing historical centre of Mexco City, and the endless white beaches of Cancún. You'll return with a great sense of the country and nothing but happy memories.

A Passage Through Mexico

Itinerary

Day 1 (Thursday) - Fly from the UK to Mexico City
Meals included: Meal included on the transatlantic flight.

Fly from the UK to Mexico City. On arrival you are met at the airport and escorted to your hotel. Mexico City is a buzzing capital city with something for everyone: leafy parks; splendid gastronomy; world-class museums; remnants from ancient cities; laid back canal rides; a flourishing culture and arts scene and a lively Latin American spirit.

Day 2 (Friday) - Take the optional Historical Mexico City excursion, or enjoy a free day in the city
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel.

Spend the day exploring one of Latin America’s most compelling capitals. Either wander the bustling streets of the UNESCO recognised Historic Centre on your own or take the optional half-day Historical Mexico City excursion, which begins in the main Zócalo square, taking in the National Palace, Metropolitan Cathedral and the remains of the Atzec Templo Mayor. You then drive along Reforma Boulevard towards the sophisticated district of Polanco and the extensive Chapultepec Park, where a former emperor’s castle sits atop a hill amidst a forest of trees. Return to your hotel for lunch, or remain in the park. There are some good restaurants nearby, and the excellent Museum of Anthropology is located on the edge of Chapultepec Park (closed on Mondays).

Day 3 (Saturday) - Visit the incredible site of Teotihaucán on the optional Pyramids of Teotihaucán excursion or have another free day in Mexico City.
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch on the Pyramids of Teotihuacán excursion.

Another free day to appreciate the museums, murals and animated vibe of Mexico City, or make your way to one of Mexico’s jaw-dropping ancient attractions: the archaeological site of Teotihuacán. The full-day Pyramids of Teotihuacán excursion takes you out of city to this man-made wonder, where you can climb the enormous Sun and Moon Temples for far-reaching views of the Valley of Mexico plains, and learn about one of Mexico’s most famous civilisations. On the return to Mexico City, stop at the Square of Three Cultures and the Catholic pilgrimage site of the Basilica of Guadalupe for an insight into the colonial era and modern-day city landmarks.

Day 4 (Sunday) - Fly to Tuxtla Gutierrez and take a boat ride in the Sumidero Canyon before transferring to the highland city of San Cristóbal de las Casas.
Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch is included before the Sumidero Canyon boat ride.

Fly in the morning to the state of Chiapas in southern Mexico, landing in sultry Tuxtla Gutierrez. After lunch at a nearby restaurant, take an invigorating two-hour boat ride through the Sumidero Canyon, a steep-sided gorge, with beautiful views of waterfalls and the sheer rock face. Then continue by road to the tourist-friendly, highland city of San Cristóbal de las Casas, where many colonial era buildings have been attractively restored. You spend the next two nights here and have the evening free to navigate the city centre on foot.

Day 5 (Monday) - Take a guided walking tour of the centre of San Cristóbal and visit the unique communities of Zinacantán and Chamula on our Maya Villages excursion, or enjoy a free day in the city
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel.

Our fascinating Maya Villages excursion gives you an insight into the unique way of life practiced in the communities of Zinacantán and San Juan Chamula, a short distance from San Cristóbal. This morning excursion begins with a walking tour, taking in some of the buildings of historical interest in San Cristóbal. You then drive to two villages just outside of the city, where a traditional lifestyle based on ancient Maya rituals and customs is practised. The communities have adopted some elements of life in modern-day Mexico but remain detached from the outside world, resulting in an intriguing blend of modernity and ancient traditions. If you would prefer to have a free day in San Cristóbal, the city has a number of good museums, cafes, restaurants and handicraft shopping.

Day 6 (Tuesday) - Drive to the archaeological site of Palenque, via the cascades of Agua Azul, for a tour of the Maya temples
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch is included en route to Palenque.

After breakfast depart for a full-day journey descending into the Chiapas jungle to Palenque. On the way, stop at the lovely Roberto Barrios waterfalls, where you can swim in the jungle-fringed pools, then continue to your hotel in the town of Palenque.

Day 7 (Wednesday) - Visit the jungle ruins of Palenque.
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel.

After breakfast take a guided tour of the ruins of the city of Palenque, built in the heart of the jungle by the ancient Maya. Palenque is one of the most beautiful archaeological sites in Mexico, with exquisite architectural detail and a jungle backdrop. You have a guided tour of the main buildings, including the Temple of Inscriptions and Temple of the Cross, before returning to your hotel. Enjoy a free afternoon.

Day 8 (Thursday) - Delve deeper into the jungle on the Jungle Temples of Bonampak & Yaxchilán excursion, or enjoy a free day.
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch included on the Jungle Temples of Bonampak & Yaxchilán excursion.

Today is a free day in the Palenque area, to enjoy your hotel pool, explore the town, or take our optional full-day Jungle Temples of Bonampak & Yaxchilán excursion. Yaxchilán and Bonampak are two lesser-visited, but excellent and well-preserved, archaeological sites on the Mexican-Guatemalan border. They are known for their artistry, colourful friezes bright after over 1000 years and long sequences of ancient glyphs, which have taught us much about the people who lived and ruled here. Accessing these remote sites is an adventure by road and small boat through the jungle.

Day 9 (Friday) - Transfer to Villahermosa and then fly to Mérida, a pretty colonial city in the Yucatán peninsula
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel.

Take a two-hour drive to Villahermosa airport for a flight to Mérida, where you are transferred to your hotel close to the main square. Mérida is known as a laid-back city, where visitors receive a warm welcome and are encouraged to take part in the cultural events, which regularly take place across the city. Every evening, an event takes place close to the central square, to showcase regional music, dance and traditional dress. On Friday evenings a reconstruction of the Maya ball game Pok-ta-Pok is held, giving an idea of the strength and skill needed to compete in this game which served religious and political purposes. You have the evening free to settle in, explore the heart of the city and perhaps try some regional food in one of the restaurants housed in a colonial-era building.

Day 10 (Saturday) - A free day to explore Mérida, or get to know the historical importance and natural wonders of the local area on the Hacienda & Cenote optional excursion
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch on the Hacienda & Cenote excursion.

The haciendas of the Yucatán were the source of much wealth in the region, and our optional Hacienda & Cenote excursion allows you to experience some of this splendour. You spend the morning and early afternoon at Hacienda Sotuta de Peón, a short distance out of Mérida, first enjoying an interesting guided tour before journeying further into the plantation on a traditional cart. Within the plantation you stop at a cenote, a natural underground pool. Entering through a small opening in the ground, the cenote is enclosed in an atmospheric cavern where you can have a refreshing swim in the crystalline turquoise water. Afterwards, have lunch at the hacienda before returning to Mérida for a free evening.

Day 11 (Sunday) - Morning visit to the fabulous ruins of Chichén Itzá, before continuing to your hotel on the Caribbean coast
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch at Chichén Itzá.

Set off early for a two-hour drive to reach the archaeological site of Chichén Itzá at the quietest part of the day. Chichén Itzá is one of the best known historical sites in Mexico, especially since it was named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007. The giant Kukulkan pyramid, the iconic image of Chichén Itzá, is an awe-inspiring sight towering above the surrounding temples. You have a guided tour around the complex and lunch at a nearby restaurant. Then continue for two hours to Cancún on the beautiful Caribbean coast where you will spend your final night in Mexico. Your hotel is on a white-sand beach in a quiet area; the perfect location for an evening stroll beside the calm sea waters.

Day 12 (Monday) - Relax on the beach then transfer to the airport for your flight to the UK
Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Meal on the transatlantic flight.

Depending on your flight time, you may have some time this morning to relax on the gorgeous beach beside your hotel. There is a long stretch of fine, white sand, with sun loungers and parasols, and the hotel has a refreshing pool. Later, you will have a transfer to the airport for your return flight home. You can also extend your stay in Cancún by adding additional nights in your beachfront hotel.

Day 13 (Tuesday) - Arrival in the UK

Your flight arrives back in the UK. For departures prior to May 2019, see our website for details.

Date of Departure & Approximate Holiday Prices

Prices are in £ per person
October, 2019 - £1999
November, 2019 - £1999
January, 2020 - £2099
February, 2020 - £2099
March, 2020 - £2099
April, 2020 - £1999
May, 2020 - £1999
July, 2020 - £2399
November, 2020 - £1999

Single Supplement - £500
Full Excursion Package from £389, please visit our website or contact us for more details

Please visit our website or contact us for more details.



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