MEXICO

Mexico is, without a doubt, my favorite country to explore. I've visited alone many times, with friends, and on a family vacation - the country truly has something for everyone! The world-famous food alone (tacos, tamales, flautas, enchiladas, tlacoyos, etc) justifies a visit, the people are friendly, and the diversity of landscape (desert, mountain, jungle, beach) and things to do (dance, scuba dive, bike, visit pyramids) is seemingly never-ending. I've visited more times than I can count, including a whale-watching road trip through Baja Cali, a camping and waterfall jumping trip through San Luis Potosi, a nature-watching boat tour in Chiapas, ancient ruins exploration in Veracruz, hiking in Oaxaca, a traditional beach resort trip to Cancun, and of course, many trips to Mexico City for biking, salsa dancing, and visits to Frida Khalo's home, Diego Rivera's museum, and nearby pyramids and native sweat lodge retreats.

I've had so much fun in Mexico that I've begun receiving requests to plan group trips there! Below are details about the Day of the Dead Mexico City trip this November and idea for winter and spring. I will hold various information sessions leading up to the event but feel free to reach out with questions here.

Mexico City - Day of the Dead Festival - November 2017

Tuesday, October 31st (7-day trip option)

·      Arrive, get settled

·      Possible Halloween evening activities, depending on flight arrival times

Wednesday, November 1st

·      Day trip to Teotihuacan Sun and Moon Pyramids 7am – 5pmOR

o   Visit to the famous Anthropology Museum and Fine Arts Museum

·      Evening Day of the Dead activities in Mexico City

·      5-day trip option individuals arrive on a late evening flight

Thursday, November 2nd

Tepoztlan is considered the birthplace of the Mesoamerican god, Quetzalcoatl, and is an important indigenous site. The town itself has a well-preserved historic center and is surrounded by soaring cliffs, on the top of which is the Tepozteco pyramid. The one-hour walk up hill to the pyramid can be quite challenging but offers a spectacular view. Tepoztlan offers traditional altar building and lamp creating ceremonies that forms part of the Day of the Dead ceremony. As part of the Day of the Dead, people organize ceremonies at the cemetery for those not physically with them any longer.

·      Tepoztlan day trip

·      Participants will be able to either hike up the mountain or enjoy a shaman-led “temazcal” Mayan sweat lodge where hot coal ovens turn an igloo-like structure into a sauna, filled with the scents of fresh mint, eucalyptus, chamomile flowers, and other medicinal herbs

·      Observe Day of the Dead ceremony in Tepoztlan

Friday, November 3rd

·      Morning visit to the Central de Abasto, the largest wholesale market in the world where you can find all sorts of fresh produce and foodstuffs you didn’t know existed. The market feeds 21 million people and has it’s own zip code! The Central de Abasto is one of the largest economic centers of operations in the country, second only to the Mexican Stock Exchange.

·      Evening Zocalo walking tour to visit the city's huge central square, to see Aztec ruins and colonial architecture, and some of the city’s many parks, plazas and gardens.

Saturday, November 4th

·      Visit to Frida Khalo’s home and museum

·      Visit to Diego Rivera’s museum, Anahuacalli. Built of black volcanic stone, the museum houses nearly 60,000 pre-Hispanic pieces which represent nearly all of the indigenous civilizations in Mexico’s history.

·      As both Frida and Diego were obsessed with death, which is evident in their art, both museums typically hold special Day of the Dead events and workshops

·      Tour of trendy, artsy Coyoacan neighborhood and famous food hall

·      Optional evening activity: Lucha Libre match if one is scheduled

Sunday, November 5th

·      Morning bike ride through closed-streets

·      Afternoon bike ride through Chapultapec Park, downtown, and various neighborhoods and important sites not yet visited

·      Evening – free time

·      Optional activity: Lucha Libre match if one is scheduled

·      5-day trip option individuals leave on a late evening flight

Monday, November 6th (7-day trip option)

·      Additional bike ride day OR

·      Visit to Xochimilcol, for a canal boat tour in Mexico’s version of Venice. While floating down the river, other boats float by selling tacos, flowers, and beer. Mariachi boats also float by taking requests for songs.

o   Optional visit to Doll's Island (or Isla de las Munecas), an island dedicated to the lost soul of a poor girl who drowned in mysterious circumstances. This small island is home to hundreds of dolls - many of them with severed limbs, decapitated heads and black eyes - who are said to be possessed by the girl's spirit. Local legends says that the dolls move their heads and arms and have even been known to open their eyes!

Tuesday, November 7th

·      Fly back to NYC

Price per person*:

5-day option: $795 per person by August 20th

5-day option: $895 per person by September 20th

7-day option: $995 per person by August 20th

7-day option: $1095 per person by September 20th

*These prices are based on double-occupancy. If you wish to have your own room, please add $199 for the 5-day trip and $299 for the 7-day trip. In the past, guests have enjoyed inviting friends and family to share a room with though I will try to pair up interested singles looking for a roommate. Please note that a $400 deposit is required by the indicated date to reserve your spot.

 

Baja California- Whale Watching Road Trip

January, 2017, exact dates TBD

- Fly into San Diego, California and cross the border to Tijuana, Mexico

- Experience the interesting blend of Mexican & American cultures at the border

- Visit the US/Mexican border wall that runs into the ocean & is surrounded by art exhibits

- Camp within the salt flats of Guerrero Negro and view gray whales up close on a small boat tour

- Swim with whale sharks in the small beach town of Mulege

- Blue whale watching tour in Loreto (optional scuba diving trip to see sea lions and manta rays)

- Enjoy the sun and fun at beaches in Cabo

- Lots and lots of eating!

Mexico City and Michoacan - Butterfly Migration

February, 2017, exact dates TBD

- Witness the migration billions of monarch butterflies in the state of Michoacan

- Day trip to state of Puebla for a historical walking tour, tour of ancient churches....and lots of good food!

- Friday Khalo Museum, Diego Rivera Museum, Museum of Anthropology

- Day trip to the Teotihuacan Sun and Moon pyramids

- Bike tour of Mexico City's "zocalo", Tenochtitlan, National Palace, and neighborhoods tour

- Xochimilco canal tour, Witches Market, Huge produce market tour

- Lots and lots of eating!