Itinerary Highlights
    • Visit ancient ruins across Mexico
    • Learn to cook authentic Oaxacan recipes
    • Visit the home of iconic Mexican artist, Frida Khalo
    • Catch some sun on Tulum’s white sand beaches

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Modern Mexico offers everything you could ask for from a luxury holiday; culture, delicious food and some truly wonderful beaches. In this 17-day itinerary we have brought together the best of those, with extra emphasis on Mexico's fascinating pre-colonial history.

Begin your adventure by exploring the ancient archaeological complex of Teotihuacan with an expert guide, before wandering through the cobbled streets of Mexico City on a guided tour. Head to Frida Kahlo’s iconic Blue House for a splash of history, before exploring Oaxaca’s cultural heritage the day after. Over the next few days, you will traverse through traditional Mexican life in San Cristobal de las Casas as well as seeking out winsome waterfalls amid the lush green rainforest in Misol Ha.
For the final section of your trip, enjoy private tours through Palenque and Merida where ancient carvings and complex stonework cover the walls, before taking a private transfer to Tulum for a day or two of white sands and turquoise seas before flying home.


Everything is 100% tailored to you


Today you’ll head to the airport and hop aboard your ten-and-a-half-hour international flight to Mexico City. After you've cleared customs and collected your luggage, you will be met by one of our team on the ground and privately transferred to your hotel. We recommend dinner at your hotel to get your stomach on Mexico time then an early night ready for the first full day of your trip tomorrow.



It's an early breakfast today, which is handy because you'll probably be trying to shake off the jetlag. Your expert guide will meet you at your hotel for a private transfer (about 45 minutes by car) to Teotihuacan, which in Nahuatl (the language of the Aztecs) means 'the birthplace of the gods'. Teotihuacan, which in around 500 AD was one of the largest cities in the world, is considered one of the most important sites in Mesoamerica. After exploring with your guide, you will also have a chance to climb the Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Moon and take in the view across the city and valley of Teotihuacan.

You will be privately transferred back to Mexico City for lunch, (we recommend consulting your detailed Dossier for our favourite spots), before a private walking tour of the city. Your guide will show you the Zocalo (Central Square), the second largest plaza in the world, and the adjacent National Palace, home to Diego Rivera's murals depicting more than a thousand years of Mexican history.



This morning your expert guide will meet you at your hotel for a private transfer to San Angel (about half an hour by car). The narrow, cobbled streets and large colourful houses make it hard to believe that you're still in Mexico City. After exploring the Bazar del Sabado, an art and artisan market that brings people to San Angel from all over the city, you’ll get to visit Coyoacan, where you can wander down the leafy streets lined with colourful brick buildings. You will also get to visit Frida Kahlo's Blue House, where the artist was born and died. It is now a museum dedicated to her life and through exploring her house, her art and reading her words, you will learn more about the painter who became such an iconic figure in Mexico and beyond.



After breakfast you will be privately transferred to Mexico City Airport for the one-and-a-quarter-hour flight to Oaxaca. After collecting your bags, you will be met for a private transfer to your hotel. Refuel with a hearty lunch, then meet your expert guide at your hotel for an afternoon walking tour of the historic city centre. You will learn about the city's cultural heritage on a private visit to the Oaxaca Museum of Culture, which is home to the treasure found in one of the tombs at the Monte Alban archaeological site, before visiting the Art of Oaxaca and Quetzalli art galleries. You will also have a chance to try some of Oaxaca's regional delicacies like hot chocolate and, if you’re feeling brave, grasshoppers.



After breakfast you’ll be met by a local guide for a private transfer up to Monte Alban. On a guided tour, visit the main plaza with its impressive vistas, learn about the many theories surrounding the intricate rock carvings known as Los Danzantes, and hear about the ancient, high stakes (often life and death) ball game that was played at the ball court.

After lunch, head to Mitla, one of the most important sites in the region. The site is famous for its intricate and angular mosaic work that isn’t found in any other Mesoamerican sites. The mosaics, made from finely cut and polished stone, were fitted together without mortar, like an intricate puzzle, and set against deep-red stucco (plaster), which remains vibrant across much of the site today. Your guide will lead you around the site and you’ll have the chance to enter the ancient tombs.



This morning your guide will meet you at your hotel for a 40-minute private transfer to Teotitlan Del Valle, possibly the prettiest village in the east side of the valley. You will have a guided visit to Teotitlan Del Valle Market, followed by a trip to the home of a local resident where you’ll get to delve into the process of weaving traditional rugs. Many people still use the traditional techniques of carding and spinning their own wool, then dying it with natural colours, before finally weaving on solid-wood looms.

Oaxaca is also famous for its culinary heritage, which forms the foundations of the traditional Mexican cuisine that has been awarded UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage status – one of very few national gastronomies ever to garner that particular honour. Later, enjoy a regional cooking class and lunch as a special guest in a Zapotec (the indigenous people of the Oaxaca region) family's home, where your hosts will share the secrets of authentic Oaxacan cuisine. After lunch you’ll be privately transferred back to your hotel to spend the afternoon at leisure.



After a late breakfast and check out, you’ll be privately transferred to Sumidero Canyon National Park in the Chiapas region. Hop aboard a boat and hit the water that flows through this geological marvel, for a two-hour tour. The canyon was formed at around the same time as the Grand Canyon, as a result of a geographical fault during the Pleistocene Era, and is home to a plethora of wildlife including crocodiles, monkeys and marine birds which you guide will help you to spot. There are also a number of unusual rock formations to observe as you jet along the blue green Grijalva River. At the end of the boat ride, you’ll be privately transferred to your hotel in San Cristobal de las Casas, a journey which will take roughly one-and-three-quarter hours. Spend the evening tucking to delicious Mexican cuisine, before hitting the hay, ready for another day of adventure.



Today you’ll be taken on a privately guided tour of three towns in the Chiapas, gaining a real insight into traditional life in the area. You‘ll get to explore the colonial city of San Cristobal de las Casas on a walking tour, wandering the narrow winding streets and visiting the churches and markets nestled within the city, to discover local textiles and handicrafts, before heading to two indigenous towns nearby. First up is San Juan Chamula, where you’ll visit a church brimming with a blend of pre-Hispanic traditions and Catholicism, evident in the Saints painted on the walls to represent Mayan gods and the chants and sacrifices (no longer human!) offered by the local families. Continuing on, you’ll then visit San Lorenzo Zinacantan, a town known for its traditional textiles and fascinating indigenous population. After a late lunch, visit a local artisanal workshop to learn about all kinds of crafts, before visiting the town church to discover the history of Catholicism in Chiapas.



After breakfast you’ll be met at your hotel by your guide for a four-hour private transfer to Misol Ha (in cultural references, the waterfall Arnie leapt off in Predator). The waterfall plunges 115ft into a round pool surrounded by lush green vegetation; it's so verdant that you could be in the middle of a rainforest. Wander along the path that runs beneath the waterfall to feel its power and get soaked by the billowing spray – make sure you have a dry change of clothes to hand as you’ll likely get a little soggy. Once you've had your fill of the falls, you’ll be transferred on to your next hotel, near Palenque, where you’ll spend the rest of the day relaxing after your long journey.

DAY 10


Ready for an early start? You’ll be met at your hotel by a guide at the crack of dawn for a two-and-a-half-hour transfer to Bonampak, a town whose name means 'painted walls' in Maya, the native language still used by the locals. Visit the fascinating and well-kept secret of the Lacandon Forest, which is known for the astonishing frescoes that are tucked away inside the Templo de las Pinturas. Once you've finished exploring, you’ll be privately transferred to Yaxchitlan, an ancient Mayan site only accessible by boat. Your guide will talk you through the ornamental building facades, roof combs and impressive stone lintels depicting battles and ceremonial events. As you explore the archaeological site, the calls of the many howler monkeys swinging from the trees above remind you just how far from modern civilization you are and how powerfully alive the Lacandon Forest remains.

DAY 11


After breakfast this morning, check out of your hotel and meet your expert guide for a private transfer to the Mayan ruins at Palenque – a city which lay covered by the jungle for centuries. Your guide will take you around the site, the history of which was pieced together through the large number of inscriptions and carvings found by archaeologists since its discovery. Learn about the great emperor Pakal, whose tomb was discovered with an intricately carved sarcophagus lid that has led to many myths and legends about him, and visit the Temple of Inscriptions where the tomb was discovered and try to decipher the inscriptions which narrate roughly 180 years of Palenque's history. When you’ve had your fill of history, take a two-hour private transfer to Villahermosa airport for your afternoon flight to Merida. After collecting your bags, you’ll be privately transferred to your hotel, where the rest of the afternoon and evening are yours to relax.

DAY 12


Explore the ancient Maya city of Uxmal, with its rounded architecture and intricate latticework before heading to the archaeological zone of Kabah to see the Palace of the Masks. Head out, led by your private guide, to learn that the veneration of rain was a common feature for both cities. Starting in Uxmal (which stretches 150 acres), explore the unusual ruins, learning about the unique water system and the Magician's Pyramid – which has rounded sides, great height and steepness making it unique among Mayan structures – before moving on to the Governor's Palace whose size and complex stonework are arguably the masterpiece at Uxmal. Venture to a nearby cenote or hacienda for a tasty lunch before spending the rest of the day at leisure.

DAY 13


After an early breakfast and check out, your expert guide will meet you at your hotel lobby for your private transfer to Chichen Itza, Mexico's most visited archaeological site. Your guide will help you get a feel for what Chichen Itza was like before the Spanish arrived, by explaining the cosmology, religion and everyday life of the Mayan people. Visiting the platform of the skulls, you’ll see how both life and death are represented, before heading to the ball court where archaeologists believe the losers paid with their lives. You’ll then visit the cenote where sacrificial drowning took place, learning about the type of rituals involved and what was uncovered when attempts were made to drain this deep sinkhole. After your visit, you’ll be privately transferred to your hotel just outside Tulum, a journey which will take approximately two-and-a-quarter hours.

DAYS 14 & 15


This morning you will be met in the hotel lobby before dawn and driven approximately 25 minutes to Tulum for your privately guided sunrise tour of the ruins. Your guide will take you round Tulum's most interesting sites, telling you about the history and cosmology of the site. Make sure to bring your swimming togs, because post tour you’ll also have a chance to swim in the Caribbean waters and look up at Tulum's iconic 'Castillo' from below. Spend the next few days relaxing, as well as embarking on a tour of the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve, where you’ll have the chance to explore the marshes, mangroves and flora of the natural waterways with your guide. This biosphere reserve is one of the largest protected areas in Mexico and is home to jaguars, manatees and an array of bird life. Start the tour on foot before hopping aboard a boat to explore the channels, and finally jumping in and drifting along with the current over cenotes.

DAY 16


Sadly, today is your last day in Mexico, so before your evening flight home we recommend spending the day relaxing at your hotel. Join a yoga class, treat yourself to a pampering spa treatment, spend some time by the pool or make the most of the white sands and turquoise seas with a morning at the beach. After a leisurely lunch and late check out you’ll be privately transferred to Cancun Airport for your overnight flight home, which takes roughly nine hours.

DAY 17


Your overnight flight will arrive back in London today.

A Rough Idea of Price

Dependent on season, accommodation and activities
The estimated cost for this trip starts from £4,960 to £7,920 per person. The final cost of the trip depends on the way we tailor it especially for you. The final cost varies according to several factors, which include the level of service, length of trip and advance booking time. The exact price will be provided on your personalised quote. The average starting price for this trip is £6,335 per person.
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