Colonial Cultures Road Trip
- Price from:
- 276 GBP /person
- 01273 322046
- Payment Types:
- Credit Card
- Travellers cheque
- Wire Transfer
- 5 days
- Location Start:
- Mexico City
- Location Finish:
- San Cristobal de las Casas
- We Speak:
Last updated: 02/19/2009
Visit Puebla, nestled in a valley surrounded by active volcanoes and popular with musicians, students and artists. See Oaxaca with its eclectic mix of Indian, colonial and modern day architecture.
Mexico City to PueblaBecause we want to make sure you get to the right bus station to catch your bus out of Mexico City, we've arranged a transfer from your hotel to the bus terminal. Leaving Mexico City around 9am, it takes a while before you're out of the big, noisy metropolis. Greater Mexico City is the largest city in the world.Eventually the suburbs make way for a dry, hilly landscape dotted with giant cactuses and the occasional hacienda in the distance. It's the quintessential Mexico you recognise from the travel guides. After a 3-hour bus ride you arrive in Puebla, which like Oaxaca is a cultural city with lots of events going on.When you arrive at the hotel ask if there are any local festivals or special activities happening, they're usually a lot of fun to see.Travel time: approx 3 hours
PueblaPuebla is brimming with beautiful districts and if you like art you'll particularly enjoy the artists' district Barrio del Artista with its many open galleries. Heading out of Barrio del Artista you'll arrive on the Calle 6 Orienta, a street filled with âdulceriasâ (sweet shops) with mouth watering (and tooth breaking) sweets and delicacies. Dulce de leche and lime filled with sweet coconut and custard is a local speciality.Further on is the beautiful 150 year old Teatro Principal and close to it a fantastic terrace where you could spend days people watching. It's a popular meeting place for the many musicians of this town.
Puebla to OaxacaThe bus leaves for Oaxaca at 9am. Even with 300,000 inhabitants, Oaxaca almost has a village feel to it. The centre is very compact and the pedestrian area and the Zocalo, (central square) in Oaxaca is always bustling, especially in the evening.Oaxaca is considerably more Indian than Puebla, which is more âMestizoâ. The Indians stand out in their colourful robes and every tribe has its own signature style and colour scheme. Churches and markets stand happily side by side: little stalls piled high with local handicrafts stand against a backdrop of imposing baroque buildings.The most beautiful church in Oaxaca is the Santa Domingo. The sober stone facade forms a striking contrast to the glittering gold interior, and when the sun seeps in through the windows the church lights up in a magical golden glow.After an afternoon walking round the town you can recharge your batteries in a Temazcal bath - a purifying herbal sauna.Travel time: 5 hours
Oaxaca, cycling Monte AlbanThis morning you'll be collected by minibus at 8am and driven up the steep climb to Monte Alban, a temple city built on the top of the âWhite Mountainâ.Construction of the Monte Alban started around the 700 BC, though no-one actually knows by whom. Perhaps it was the Olmecs, but whoever it was certainly moved mountains (literally) to build the city: the top of the hill was dug up and levelled out over an area of 402kmÂ², creating an enormous plateau on which the city was built. Standing among the temple ruins early in the morning sunshine with a cool breeze blowing you can enjoy the same celestial view across the mountains which must have inspired the builders centuries ago to construct something very special here.In the early period the temple complex served a purely religious purpose but later Monte Alban became a burial city for the Zapotecs and later Mixtecs. Tombs built for dignitaries were so cleverly hidden that they weren't actually discovered until this century.When you're done admiring the ruins and the views, you'll pedal your way back down to Oaxaca by bike. You can stop off on the way at one of the roadside stalls or villages to see the local villagers working on their wood crafts or sculptures. Usually you can just walk in and, with a bit of nifty hand-and-foot-Spanish, find out more about their way of life.At 2pm you'll hand in your bike back in Oaxaca and spend a few more hours relaxing in the town before boarding the overnight bus at 7pm for the 12-hour trip to San Cristobal.
Arrival in San CristobalYou'll arrive into San Cristobal at approximately 7am, where this module finishes.
- Inclusions -
- 2 nights Puebla, 1 night Oaxaca, cycling Monte Alban, night bus Oaxaca to San Cristobal de las Casas
- Exclusions -
- All meals
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