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  • Departing from?Dublin + 3
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  • When?March 2015
  • How long for?7 nights
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Mexico – The Aztec Empire & Tulum
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Mexico – The Aztec Empire & Tulum

  • 13 Night Holiday
  • B&B
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Combine relaxation with culture and history on this incredible trip to Mexico. Your journey will bring you through the bustling metropolis of Mexico City to the quaint streets of Mérida, and from the ancient Aztec and Mayan empires to the white sandy beaches of Tulum. Join us on this 13-night adventure and create memories that will last a lifetime. 

In the ancient civilizations of Palenque, Uxmal and Chichen Itza you will experience the culture of the Mayan civilization firsthand. You will also see some of the oldest pyramids in the world at the Aztec settlement of Teotihuacan.

As well as its fascinating history, you will witness the natural beauty of Mexico with the blue waters at the world famous pool of Ik Kil or the magnificent Aqua Azul waterfalls.

To complete your trip, there will be time to indulge in some relaxation on the beaches of Tulum.

 

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Peso
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time -6 Hours
Passport

Irish and UK citizens require a valid passport to enter Mexico. Visas are issued on arrival. 

Vaccinations

Vaccinations may be required before your departure - please consult with your GP or Tropical Medical Bureau.

Airport
Mexico City. It will take approx 30 minutes to get from the airport to your hotel.
Food & Drink

Mexican food is healthy and delicious, with as much or as little spice as you can bear. Eat the freshest grilled and sautéed fish and red meat, hot or cool salsas, and delicious baked corn and vegetable dishes. The produce is ripe, sweet and fresh and dishes vary from region to region. This holiday is the perfect opportunity to learn the difference between burritos, tacos, chimichangas, empanadas and enchiladas.

Average Prices
  • Coffee: 35MXN
  • Beer: 25MXN
  • Glass of wine: 35MXN
  • Meal: 70.00MXN
  • Soft Drink: 13MXN
  • Bottled Water: 9MXN

€1 = approx 16 MXN

Packing List
  • A North American plug adaptor
  • Sun cream
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy

The Treasure of the Sierra Madreby B. Traven

The Power & the Glory by Graham Greene

Holiday highlights

Teotihuacan 

Teotihuacan means ‘The Birthplace of the Gods’ reflecting the Aztec belief that the gods created the universe here. Constructed around 300 AD, the holy city is characterized by the vast size of its monuments, carefully laid out on geometric and symbolic principles. Its most monumental structures are the Temple of Quetzalcoatl, the Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Moon.

Diego Rivera Murals

Diego Rivera's murals glorified the Mexican people and provided an alternate history for the people who could not read it in books. His art helped the government at the time redefine the nation by creating a new national identity.

Monte Albán

Monte Albán was inhabited by Olmecs, Zapotecs and Mixtecs over a period of 1500 years. All terraces, dams, canals, pyramids and artificial mounds were carved out of the mountain and are symbols of a sacred topography. 

Tule Tree

According to the legend, a priest of the Aztec storm god planted this tree 1400 years ago. It stands on the grounds of a church in Santa María del Tule in the Mexican state of Oaxaca. This Montezuma cypress tree has a 119 feet circumference, but is only 116 feet high.

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Peso
Local Time
Ireland/UK Time -6 Hours
Passport

Irish and UK citizens require a valid passport to enter Mexico. Visas are issued on arrival. 

Vaccinations

Vaccinations may be required before your departure - please consult with your GP or Tropical Medical Bureau.

Airport
Mexico City. It will take approx 30 minutes to get from the airport to your hotel.
Food & Drink

Mexican food is healthy and delicious, with as much or as little spice as you can bear. Eat the freshest grilled and sautéed fish and red meat, hot or cool salsas, and delicious baked corn and vegetable dishes. The produce is ripe, sweet and fresh and dishes vary from region to region. This holiday is the perfect opportunity to learn the difference between burritos, tacos, chimichangas, empanadas and enchiladas.

Average Prices
  • Coffee: 35MXN
  • Beer: 25MXN
  • Glass of wine: 35MXN
  • Meal: 70.00MXN
  • Soft Drink: 13MXN
  • Bottled Water: 9MXN

€1 = approx 16 MXN

Packing List
  • A North American plug adaptor
  • Sun cream
  • A small backpack
  • A sun hat
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy

The Treasure of the Sierra Madreby B. Traven

The Power & the Glory by Graham Greene

Trip Itinerary - Day by day

Day 1 - Travel to Mexico

Morning

Travel to Mexico

Upon arriving in Mexico City, you will be met by our local representative in the airport before being transferred to your hotel which will be your base for the following three nights. 

Day 2 - Mexico City

Full Day

Mexico City

You will begin your holiday with a half day city tour of Mexico City, accompanied by your expert local guide. A metropolis originally built by the Aztecs, today Mexico City is the cultural epicentre of Mexico and one of the fastest growing cities in the world. On this excursion, you will visit national landmarks such as the National Palace, the Diego Rivera murals and the Anthropology Museum. The National Palace, a stunning and grand house built in the tezontle rock, has been the palace for the ruling class of Mexico since the Aztec empire and you will see that a large amount of the building’s structure remains from the original palace belonging to Moctezuma II. Next, you can gaze upon the murals of Rivera, an artist who painted large and intricate frescos that depict Mexican history, before visiting the Anthropology museum to see many artefacts from the Aztec empire. Don’t forget to check out the ‘Stone of the Sun,’ the original Aztec calendar.

Day 3 - Teotihuacan, the Land of the Aztecs

Full Day

Teotihuacan, the Land of the Aztecs

After breakfast you will visit Teotihuacan, the 2000 year old city that is known as ‘The Birthplace of the Gods’. This ancient settlement of the Aztecs was originally built between 100BC and 250AD, and is home to the oldest Mesoamerican pyramids on the continent. En route you will enjoy a stop at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, one of the most important pilgrimage sites of Catholicism and one of Mexico City’s most spectacular buildings.  At Teotihuacan, a UNESCO World Heritage site, you can explore areas like ‘The Pyramid of the Sun’ and the ‘Avenue of the Dead’. Before leaving, we recommend that you admire the Temple of Quetzalcoatl, a grand temple dedicated to the god of the Aztecs, as it is the most breathtaking feature of this fallen empire.

Day 4 - Oaxaca

Full Day

Oaxaca

On this full day excursion, you will visit the historical and cultural city of Oaxaca, the spectacular church of Santa María Tonantzintla and the city of Puebla. Brimming with structures built from green stone, Oaxaca contains markets, parks, gardens and stunning architecture for you to explore. Built in 1703, the Church of St. John is the city’s oldest church, while the Church of San Felipe Neri showcases some magnificent Baroque features. Don’t forget to taste one of the City’s most famous products – the incredibly rich local chocolate. Afterwards you can admire the spectacular mosaic of religious imagery of Santa María Tonantzintla. The vibrant hues cover every last inch of the church’s interior creating a dazzling artistic display.  Afterwards you will visit Peubla, which is famous for its coffee and quaint buildings. Make sure you check out the 500 year old Temple de San Francisco with its looming tower. In the evening you will transfer to your hotel in Oaxaca where you will be based for the following two nights.  

Day 5 - Monte Albán

Full Day

Monte Albán

Today you will enjoy a full day excursion to the historic Monte Albán, the Mitla archaeological site. Similarly to Teotihuacan this ancient Zapotec capital displays ruins of pyramids, temples, tombs, ceremonial platforms and plazas on a flattened mountain top that gives panoramic views of the surrounding valley.  Afterwards you will visit the Tule Tree, believed to be about 2000 years old. Taller than the spires of the nearby church, this tree is still growing. 

Day 6 - Sumidero Canyon & San Cristóbal

Full Day

Sumidero Canyon & San Cristóbal

Today’s excursion begins with an early morning coach transfer to Oaxaca airport for your internal flight to Tuxtla Gutiérrez, upon landing you will board a coach transfer to San Cristobal las Casas with a boat journey through the Sumidero Canyon included.

Day 7 - San Juan Chamula & Zinacantán

Full Day

San Juan Chamula & Zinacantán

On day 7 you will explore the indigenous villages of San Juan Chamula and Zinacantán. Home to some Tzoztil communities, you can visit the local market in San Juan Chamula to pick up some traditional embroidered clothing. You will also have the chance to attend the prayer rituals at the Cathedral San Juan Bautista. Zinacantán is famous for its flower markets and religious history.  

Day 8 - Palenque

Morning

Palenque & Agua Azul Waterfalls

In the morning you will travel to Palenque, visiting the waterfalls of Agua Azul en route to your hotel in Palenque. 

Day 9 - Palenque & Campeche

Full Day

Palenque & Campeche

On day 9 you will travel on to Campeche, stopping for a visit to the archaeological Mayan region of Palenque en route. Containing some of the finest sculpture and architecture that the Mayans have produced, Palenque will take your breath away. With more than 90 per cent of the settlement covered by forest, the area on show only reveals just a few of the site’s treasures, including the tomb of Pascal the Great, the palace, some intricate stone carvings and an impressive observation tower. Your overnight stay will be in Campeche. 

Day 10 - Mayan City of Uxmal & Mérida

Full Day

Mayan City of Uxmal & Mérida

Today you will visit the ancient Mayan city of Uxmal and enjoy a city tour of Mérida on the way.  A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Uxmal showcases buildings like the Governor’s Palace, the Nunnery Quadrangle, and the Pyramid of the Magician. In Mérida admire the Colonial buildings and the French and Italian architecture in the city. This evening will be spent in Mérida.

Day 11 - Chichen Itza & Ik Kil Cenote

Full Day

Chichen Itza & Ik Kil Cenote

Chichen Itza is an ancient Mayan settlement and contains the Temple of a Thousand Warriors, the Great Ball Court and the Castillo Temple. It is Mexico’s most popular tourist attraction and is believed to be one of the oldest settlements on earth.  Ik Kil cenote is a world famous lagoon, where you will descend a carved staircase in the rock face to reach the bright blue water. Open for swimming, the pool is 26m deep and a popular diving spot.  Lunch in included before your transfer to Tulum where you will spend the following two nights. 

Day 12 - Tulum at Leisure

Full Day

Tulum at Leisure

Your final two days will be free to relax and enjoy Tulum at your own pace. Ask your guide for activity recommendations, or spend your day chilling out by the hotel pool.

Day 13 - Return Home

Morning

Return Home

You will have a half day at leisure in Tulum before your afternoon transfer to the airport for your flight home, with guide assistance.

Day 14 - Arrive Home

Morning

Arrive Home

Arrive home following your once in a lifetime trip to Mexico.

* Please note that the order of your excursions on the itinerary above is provisional and subject to change

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Price, taxes, flight times & availability are subject to change. E&OE. Price based on per person, sharing. Single Supplement cost may apply.

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  • Single Supplement from €149.00
  • Baggage from €40.00
  • Insurance from €12.50

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