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See artisans at work in the colorful markets.
  • Dec 20-27, 2014
  • Duration 8 days
    Group Size 2-10
    Land Cost $2,995
    Single Supplement $300
    Lodging 3 stars-4 stars
    Grade I-II
    Best Time

    Christmas In Oaxaca

    Indigenous cultures, holiday pageantry and hands-on fun with puppetry and crafts

    Day 1      Oaxaca City

    Upon arrival you'll bemet at the airport and transferred to your centrally-located, colonial style hotel in Oaxaca City.  Enjoy a welcome dinner at a favorite Qaxaca locale!

    Welcome to Oaxaca
    Meals: Dinner
    Lodging: Hotel Vertiz or similar
    Day 2      Mitla/Tlacolula/Teotitlan del Valle

    Today is market day in Tlacolula! In addition to visiting this bustling, colorful weekly market located in the Eastern Valley, you will explore the ancient site Mitla, the post classic Zapotec and Mixtec site dedicated to the dead. See the finely carved stone frets in various designs and configurations that express the Zapotec cosmology. Following your visit to this most unique site, you travel to the weaving and dyeing community of Teotitlan del Valle. A full day is dedicated in order for us to spend quality time with some of the weavers (our friends) to better understand their natural dye materials and processes, as well as their master weaving techniques. For lunch we will eat some delicious "tlayudas" and quesadillas, so famous in Oaxaca! Take a walking tour of the town, including the church, local museum and other points of interest. You will certainly spot many beautiful tapestries you will want to take home.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
    Lodging: Hotel Vertiz or similar
    Day 3      Oaxaca City Tour

    After breakfast, enjoy a guided walking tour to introduce you to this UNESCO Cultural Heritage City, dating back to the 1530's. Highlights of the tour include the bustling Benito Juarez Market, the lively central Zocalo, the lovely pedestrian street, Garcia Virgil, the Santo Domingo Church and the Botanical Gardens. Our "comida" is at the famed Marco Polo restaurant, known for its fresh wood fired fish which is brought in daily.  After lunch, you are free to continue ambling, shopping and people watching from the Zocalo.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
    Lodging: Hotel Vertiz or similar
    Day 4      Oaxaca Cooking/Radish Carving

    A special treat is in store today, as we will be led in a wonderful cooking class to learn about Oaxaca's regional specialties, such as mole, squash blossoms, tamales and more. Our morning begins with savoring delicious high altitude coffee known as Pluma Hidalgo, from the Sierra Madre del Sur mountain range. From here, we walk to the local market, to buy our ingredients for our multiple course meal. After enjoying the fruits of our labor, we venture to the Zocalo to witness the most amazing radish carving contest in the world. Since 1897, local Oaxaca merchants and artisans have carved radishes as an early form of advertising for thier produce stands. Themes such as daily life, political characters, and nativity scenes are depicted in radish art.  Maybe you can pick the winner!

    Witness remarkably carved radishes
    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
    Lodging: Hotel Vertiz or similar
    Day 5      Monte Alban/Noche Buena

    Today is dedicated to exploring the first urban city of Mesoamerica, Monte Alban. Great civilizations emerged and thrived in this region, with the Zapotec among the first cultural groups to develop. They went beyond being nomadic hunters and gatherers and began to develop complex systems of religion, politics, and commercial activity.
    Enjoy exploring, climbing, and observing the wonders of these ancient ruins. After you’ve immersed yourself in this early world, return to present day life and refresh yourself in the on-site cafeteria,museum, and bookstore. From here, return to the now familiar Zocalo to watch the Calenda Parade, and join the locals to celebrate Buena Noche, the Night before Christmas.

    Explore Oaxaca Valley
    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
    Lodging: Hotel Vertiz or similar
    Day 6      Oaxaca Museums

    Our last day in Oaxaca is left open for us to continue as a group or independently to explore many of Oaxaca’s museums, including The Textile Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art and Art Galleries, Coops, Café’s, Bookstores and colorful dynamic markets. Or, simply sit at the Zocalo and watch people as they amble by, or listen to the marimba players. 

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Hotel Vertiz or similar
    Day 7      Ocotlan Market and Craft Route

    Today we explore the Southern Valley, known as the "Craft Route", where you first visit Ocotlan, the town that Oaxacan Painter, Rodolfo Morales came from and has left his legacy. Then visit the Rodolfo Morales Museum housed in a lovingly restored Dominican Convent. Further along the Southern Craft route, visit numerous artisan communities, including Jalieza, where cotton belts and bags and table runners are woven on backstrap looms; Tilcajete, to see the unique alebrije wood carveings; and to Coyotepec, famous for its black pottery, produced by firing in oxygen reduced kilns. This evening, enjoy a fabulous Farewell Dinner together with chef Alejandro Ruiz and Casa Oaxaca!

    Relax with the locals
    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Hotel Vertiz or similar
    Day 8      Departure

    After breakfast, you will be transfered to the airport in time for your flight home.

    Meals: Breakfast

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