Trip Type : Small Group Tour
Hidden Mexico tour
Cultural Culture Hidden Mexico package

Hidden Mexico

Exodus Travels Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.6 . Excellent
99%
Travel Style: You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level: Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
16 days
From: $ 4,025 $ 252 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights

  • Discover the secrets of the Mayan world on guided visits to Palenque and Tulum as well as the lesser-visited jungle-covered ruins of Yaxchilan and Bonampak 
  • Stay in an eco-lodge in the heart of the Chiapas jungle overlooking the Lacantún River 
  • Boat trip to see the Sumidero Canyon up close
  • Swim in Misol Ha Waterfall and Yokdzonot Cenote 
  • Discover the colourful colonial cities of San Cristobal de las Casas and Merida
  • Visit a flamingo colony at Celestun UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve
  • Idyllic Caribbean waters surrounding Tulum and the Sian Kaán Biosphere Reserve  

Short Description

Learn about the powerful and mysterious empire of the Mayans as we take in their magnificent cities, pyramids and temples on a tour of both the highlights and hidden treasures of the region. In Chiapas, one of the most undiscovered states, many of the vast ruins are still covered in jungle and Howler monkeys outnumber visitors. We’ll stay in a remote eco-lodge surrounded by tropical flora and fauna with Scarlet macaws flying overhead. Mexico is not short of natural beauty spots, and we’ll visit as many as possible from biosphere reserves to cenotes, waterfalls, lakes and canyons. Be impressed by the colourful colonial cities that we use as a base, and witness the ancient Mayan civilisation apparent in the customs, language and dress of the Indian towns and villages that we pass through.Jungle covered ruins and nature in magical Mexico 

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport N/A
Start City Mexico City
End City Cancun Airport

Travel Theme

Cultural

Destinations

Mexico

Cities & Attractions

Palenque

Activities

Culture

Age Requirement

16

N/A
See more

Trip Includes

  • All accommodation (see below)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • All breakfasts, 1 lunch and 2 dinners included
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

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Itinerary

Flight Inclusive

Day 1 Fly to Mexico City 

Welcome to Mexico City! Those on the group flights usually arrive, meet their guide and fellow travellers and transfer to our start hotel this evening. Land only clients are free to arrive at any time today. Accommodation: Hotel Royal Reforma (or similar)

Day 2 Mexico City tour visiting the Coyoacan neighbourhood and Xochimilco Canals

Mexico City is vibrant, cosmopolitan and full of history. We begin by visiting the historic centre, focusing on the hub that surrounds the Zócalo - main square - where the Palacio Nacional and Cathedral Metropolitana are located. Next, we visit the quaint neighbourhood of Coyoacan (meaning place of coyotes) with its pebbled streets, colonial churches, bustling little markets and peaceful squares. This area was inhabited before the arrival of the Spanish and it is said that the conquistador, Hernan Cortes, made this the first capital of New Spain. There is a great local market here, where you can taste dishes like Churros, Tostadas or Elotes. Our journey then continues to the peaceful waters of the Xochimilco Canals. One of the last traces of the Aztec era, here we enjoy a relaxing, scenic journey through these ancient waters. We’ll travel on a traditional pre‐Hispanic boat past vibrant floating gardens and kitchens offering a taste of traditional Mexican food. During our boat ride we can enjoy some local specialities. Accommodation: Hotel Royal Reforma (or similar)

Day 3 Fly to Tuxtla Gutierrez; boat tour of Sumidero Canyon, to the charming city of San Cristobal de las Casas

This morning we take a short flight from Mexico City to the town of Tuxtla Gutierrez, where we transfer to the Sumidero Canyon. Our flight usually departs around 11:05am so there is time for breakfast at the hotel before we leave. The imposing canyon walls rise around 1000 metres above the Grijalva River, hiding caves and waterfalls. The best way to see some of these dramatic natural formations is by taking a boat trip along the river, passing through some of the narrowest parts of the canyon. Look out for crocodiles on the river banks and many bird species. Afterwards, we make our way to San Cristobal de las Casas, stopping to have a look around the small town of San Juan Chamula (time permitting). San Juan Chamula is home to a Tzotzil-speaking community and the largest Mayan township of Chiapas. Accommodation: Casa Mexicana (or similar)

Day 4 Walking tour of San Cristobal and visit Na Bolom Museum; free afternoon

San Cristobal is one of the most attractive colonial towns in Mexico, with many old churches and squares amongst a lively café scene. It is also a major centre for the Tzotzil Indians, each group having different, colourful costumes. The extensive market has some good handicrafts for sale and plenty of interesting foodstuffs on offer. This morning we take to the bohemian streets for a walking tour of San Cristobal - alleyways open into picturesque arcades and plazas showing off their colonial architecture and hosting churches, museums, cafés, restaurants and artisan workshops. Our visit also includes the Na Bolom Museum, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the protection of the Lacandon Maya people and the preservation of the Chiapas rainforest. This interesting museum was once the home of archaeologist Frans Blom (one of the first people to excavate Palenque) and his wife Gertrude Duby, a documentary photographer, journalist, environmental pioneer and jungle adventurer. The rest of the afternoon is free to discover San Cristobal at your own pace. Accommodation: Casa Mexicana (or similar)

Day 5 Visit Montebello Lake; to Las Guacamayas eco-lodge in the Chiapas jungle

Today we travel towards the Lacandon jungle, stopping for a short visit at Montebello Lake. Lagunas de Montebello is a group of around 50 lakes in southern Chiapas, surrounded by temperate pine and oak forest, which makes a lovely spot for a picnic lunch. Afterwards we continue our journey to Las Guacamayas Eco-lodge, situated on the banks of the Lacantún River overlooking Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve. This is the heart of the rainforest in Chiapas, with tropical fauna and flora in abundance including the Scarlett macaw, regularly spotted in the surrounding fruit trees. The rooms are relatively simple but comfortable, with ceiling fans (no air conditioning), thatched palm roofs and mosquito nets. The dining room has a beautiful view of the river and is a great spot to observe nature in this special setting, it is the ideal place for nature lovers who enjoy life’s simple pleasures. Accommodation: Las Gucamayas Eco Lodge (or similar)

Day 6 Nature walk; optional boat excursion on the Lacantún River

Awake to the sound of Howler monkeys and birds in the surrounding trees! This morning we have a guided nature walk through the forest to observe the exotic flora and fauna; toucans, coatis, Howler monkeys, Spider monkeys and of course the symbol of the eco-lodge, the Scarlet macaw. Cocoa plants, ceibas, orchids, bromeliads and gourds are just some of the plants found in this area that we are likely to identify on today’s walk. This afternoon there is the option to join a boat tour on the Lacantún River to see more of this diverse habitat. Alternatively, relax in the surroundings of the eco-lodge with the sounds of the jungle as backing music. Accommodation: Las Gucamayas Eco Lodge (or similar)

Day 7 To Frontera Corozal; boat trip to the Mayan ruins of Yaxchilan which overlook Guatemala

After breakfast we depart from Las Guacamayas and travel to Frontera Corozal, a small town overlooking the Río Usumacinta which forms the jungle covered border between Mexico and Guatemala. This town is the gateway to the ruins of Yaxchilan, an important Mayan archaeological site located deep in the Lacandon jungle, once one of the most powerful cities along the river. We’ll board a boat from Frontera Corozal for the one-hour boat trip to Yaxchilan which is perched above a horseshoe loop in the river. This sites importance lies in the number of preserved, intricate structures, as well as the hieroglyphs and inscriptions found here that clearly narrate the city’s history. Our guide will bring the ruins to life, describing some of the myths and legends of Yaxchilan, as Howley monkey’s will likely be heard calling to each other overhead. We make the same return journey back to Frontera Corozal, staying in a simple property this evening (which has ceiling fans but no air conditioning) in thatched cabins overlooking the river. Accommodation: Escudo Jaguar (or similar)

Day 8 Discover Bonampak’s incredible collection of preserved murals; to Palenque

After breakfast we travel to Bonampak’s remarkably well-preserved ruins secluded in jungle. Besides the main plaza, much of the site is still taken by nature as this area was only discovered by outsiders in the 1940’s. Bonampak is highly regarded for its murals - highly detailed frescoes which tell the stories and history of the people who lived here, with scenes of human sacrifice, war, ceremonial bloodletting and ritual dancing. We’ll visit the famous Temple of the Murals where you can see three rooms that have brightly colored depictions of Mayan life. Our guide will help decipher the scenes and explain how the Maya were able to create such vibrant hues using natural materials. Following this visit we make our way to the small town of Palenque where we stay for the next two nights. Accommodation: Hotel La Aldea (or similar)

Day 9 Site visit of Palenque; to Misol-Ha waterfall for a refreshing swim

This morning we have a guided tour of the impressive Mayan site of Palenque, one of the most famous in Mexico. The pyramids, sanctuaries and temples, with their sculptured wall-panels and roofs are remarkably well preserved and are probably the finest surviving examples of Mayan buildings. In the afternoon we visit Misol Há waterfall, which powers down a 35-metre drop into a round pool. Surrounded by lush green vegetation it feels like a waterfall deep in the jungle, despite being easily accessible. You will have the chance to walk along a path underneath the waterfall to feel its power and get soaked by its spray or take a refreshing dip in the cool water. Afterwards we return to the hotel and the rest of the evening is spent at leisure. Accommodation: Hotel La Aldea (or similar)

Day 10 To Merida via the traditional village of Becal where hand-woven straw hats are made

Today is a long travel day to the colonial city of Merida. The journey is likely to take around 8 hours without stops. Our journey will be broken to visit the traditional village of Becal where hand-woven straw palm Jipi and Panama hats are made. As well as seeing some local families at work we can taste coconut horchata, a fresh, sweet drink made with rice, coconut and cinnamon that is synonymous with this region. We continue to the colonial city of Mérida. Many of its buildings were constructed using stones from the Mayan city which existed on the site and these are still visible in the walls of the imposing cathedral. The city flourished following the conquest and the 19th century homes designed in French style contribute to the attractive appearance of the historical centre. We should arrive in Merida by the late afternoon. Our accommodation here will be our base for the next three nights. Accommodation: Hotel Caribe (or similar) 

Day 11 Walking tour of Merida; optional visit to Chichen Itza archaeological site

Take in the sights of Merida on a morning walking tour of the ‘White City’ where we discover some of the main plazas and impressive architecture of this cultural hotspot. We’ll see some of the main squares and visit the San Ildefonso Cathedral, one of the oldest churches in Latin America that was built with huge stones dismantled from pyramids. The rest of the day is free to enjoy Merida at your own pace – we recommend a visit to the Gran Museo Maya to help understand the history of the Yucatan region. Alternatively you can join an optional excursion to nearby Chichen Itza, one of the largest Mayan ceremonial centres. Here the impressive El Castillo Pyramid sits in the middle of the site and is surrounded by temples, palaces and ball courts. Accommodation: Hotel Caribe (or similar) 

Day 12 Discover the UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve of Celestun with its mangroves and flamingo colony

This morning we drive to the UNESCO World Heritage Site and World Biosphere Reserve of Celestun. Boarding motorboats, we navigate the winding canals and discover this immense mangrove and wetlands complex including a visit to the permanent colony of Pink flamingos who call this beautiful area home. Returning to the dock, we head to the town of Celestun for a delicious treat of local seafood delights in the shade of a thatched roof restaurant located on the edge of the Gulf of Mexico. There is some free time to enjoy the beach this afternoon, before returning to Merida. Accommodation: Hotel Caribe (or similar) 

Day 13 Visit Yokdzonot Cenote for a swim; to Tulum

Today we leave Merida and travel towards the famous beach town of Tulum, stopping at the Yokdzonot Cenote en route for a refreshing swim. The Yucatan region is famous for its many cenote’s – these freshwater underground pools are the result of collapsed limestone bedrock, creating sinkholes that expose crystal clear water. Yokdzonot Cenote came about as the result of a co-operative in the village between 60 Mayan women and men. It is now one of the largest in the Yucatan region with long tree routes reaching down to the water, as hummingbirds fly overhead and dragonflies dart above the water. Cenotes were revered by the Mayans who believed these were spiritual places to talk with the gods. We aim to arrive in Tulum and our beach-front accommodation by the middle of the afternoon so that you have some time to relax and enjoy the facilities. Accommodation: Los Lirios (or similar) 

Day 14 Morning visit to Sian Kaán Biosphere Reserve; afternoon visit to the Mayan site of Tulum

This morning we have a short drive (45 minutes) to visit the Sian Kaán Biosphere Reserve. Meaning 'origin of the sky' in Mayan, this special biosphere reserve is made up of a large water system, marshes, mangroves and virgin tropical forest. Upon arrival at the reserve, we take a short hike through the jungle to the Muyil Maya temple, before walking along a wooden pathway by the waters edge to board a boat. Accompanied by an expert guide, we discover the reserve by water including stopping at a cenote (sinkhole) that lies underneath the surface. During our visit, there is also the chance to swim in the clear waterways or float along the 'lazy river'. After arriving back on dry land, we return to Tulum where there is the opportunity to have lunch before we visit the famous archaeological site. Whilst Tulum is not the largest of Mayan archaeological sites, it is considered to one of the most beautiful due to its striking location; set on 15-metre high cliffs above the sea. Also known as Zama, or city of dawn, Tulum was the only Mayan archaeological site to be in use at the time of the Spanish conquest. Accommodation: Los Lirios (or similar) 

Day 15 Transfer to Cancun Airport; end

Our trip ends today. Anyone with a flight inclusive package will transfer to Cancun airport in time for the group flight, which usually departs in the evening. Land only clients are free to make onward travel arrangements at any time today, or why not extend your stay and spend a little longer in Tulum to enjoy the facilities of our beach-front hotel.  

Day 16 Arrive London

Those on the group flights usually arrive in London this morning. 



Land Only

Day 1 Start Mexico City.  

Welcome to Mexico City! Those on the group flights usually arrive, meet their guide and fellow travellers and transfer to our start hotel this evening. Land only clients are free to arrive at any time today. Accommodation: Hotel Royal Reforma (or similar)

Day 2 Mexico City tour visiting the Coyoacan neighbourhood and Xochimilco Canals

Mexico City is vibrant, cosmopolitan and full of history. We begin by visiting the historic centre, focusing on the hub that surrounds the Zócalo - main square - where the Palacio Nacional and Cathedral Metropolitana are located. Next, we visit the quaint neighbourhood of Coyoacan (meaning place of coyotes) with its pebbled streets, colonial churches, bustling little markets and peaceful squares. This area was inhabited before the arrival of the Spanish and it is said that the conquistador, Hernan Cortes, made this the first capital of New Spain. There is a great local market here, where you can taste dishes like Churros, Tostadas or Elotes. Our journey then continues to the peaceful waters of the Xochimilco Canals. One of the last traces of the Aztec era, here we enjoy a relaxing, scenic journey through these ancient waters. We’ll travel on a traditional pre‐Hispanic boat past vibrant floating gardens and kitchens offering a taste of traditional Mexican food. During our boat ride we can enjoy some local specialities. Accommodation: Hotel Royal Reforma (or similar)

Day 3 Fly to Tuxtla Gutierrez; boat tour of Sumidero Canyon, to the charming city of San Cristobal de las Casas

This morning we take a short flight from Mexico City to the town of Tuxtla Gutierrez, where we transfer to the Sumidero Canyon. Our flight usually departs around 11:05am so there is time for breakfast at the hotel before we leave. The imposing canyon walls rise around 1000 metres above the Grijalva River, hiding caves and waterfalls. The best way to see some of these dramatic natural formations is by taking a boat trip along the river, passing through some of the narrowest parts of the canyon. Look out for crocodiles on the river banks and many bird species. Afterwards, we make our way to San Cristobal de las Casas, stopping to have a look around the small town of San Juan Chamula (time permitting). San Juan Chamula is home to a Tzotzil-speaking community and the largest Mayan township of Chiapas. Accommodation: Casa Mexicana (or similar)

Day 4 Walking tour of San Cristobal and visit Na Bolom Museum; free afternoon

San Cristobal is one of the most attractive colonial towns in Mexico, with many old churches and squares amongst a lively café scene. It is also a major centre for the Tzotzil Indians, each group having different, colourful costumes. The extensive market has some good handicrafts for sale and plenty of interesting foodstuffs on offer. This morning we take to the bohemian streets for a walking tour of San Cristobal - alleyways open into picturesque arcades and plazas showing off their colonial architecture and hosting churches, museums, cafés, restaurants and artisan workshops. Our visit also includes the Na Bolom Museum, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the protection of the Lacandon Maya people and the preservation of the Chiapas rainforest. This interesting museum was once the home of archaeologist Frans Blom (one of the first people to excavate Palenque) and his wife Gertrude Duby, a documentary photographer, journalist, environmental pioneer and jungle adventurer. The rest of the afternoon is free to discover San Cristobal at your own pace. Accommodation: Casa Mexicana (or similar)

Day 5 Visit Montebello Lake; to Las Guacamayas eco-lodge in the Chiapas jungle

Today we travel towards the Lacandon jungle, stopping for a short visit at Montebello Lake. Lagunas de Montebello is a group of around 50 lakes in southern Chiapas, surrounded by temperate pine and oak forest, which makes a lovely spot for a picnic lunch. Afterwards we continue our journey to Las Guacamayas Eco-lodge, situated on the banks of the Lacantún River overlooking Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve. This is the heart of the rainforest in Chiapas, with tropical fauna and flora in abundance including the Scarlett macaw, regularly spotted in the surrounding fruit trees. The rooms are relatively simple but comfortable, with ceiling fans (no air conditioning), thatched palm roofs and mosquito nets. The dining room has a beautiful view of the river and is a great spot to observe nature in this special setting, it is the ideal place for nature lovers who enjoy life’s simple pleasures. Accommodation: Las Gucamayas Eco Lodge (or similar)

Day 6 Nature walk; optional boat excursion on the Lacantún River

Awake to the sound of Howler monkeys and birds in the surrounding trees! This morning we have a guided nature walk through the forest to observe the exotic flora and fauna; toucans, coatis, Howler monkeys, Spider monkeys and of course the symbol of the eco-lodge, the Scarlet macaw. Cocoa plants, ceibas, orchids, bromeliads and gourds are just some of the plants found in this area that we are likely to identify on today’s walk. This afternoon there is the option to join a boat tour on the Lacantún River to see more of this diverse habitat. Alternatively, relax in the surroundings of the eco-lodge with the sounds of the jungle as backing music. Accommodation: Las Gucamayas Eco Lodge (or similar)

Day 7 To Frontera Corozal; boat trip to the Mayan ruins of Yaxchilan which overlook Guatemala

After breakfast we depart from Las Guacamayas and travel to Frontera Corozal, a small town overlooking the Río Usumacinta which forms the jungle covered border between Mexico and Guatemala. This town is the gateway to the ruins of Yaxchilan, an important Mayan archaeological site located deep in the Lacandon jungle, once one of the most powerful cities along the river. We’ll board a boat from Frontera Corozal for the one-hour boat trip to Yaxchilan which is perched above a horseshoe loop in the river. This sites importance lies in the number of preserved, intricate structures, as well as the hieroglyphs and inscriptions found here that clearly narrate the city’s history. Our guide will bring the ruins to life, describing some of the myths and legends of Yaxchilan, as Howley monkey’s will likely be heard calling to each other overhead. We make the same return journey back to Frontera Corozal, staying in a simple property this evening (which has ceiling fans but no air conditioning) in thatched cabins overlooking the river. Accommodation: Escudo Jaguar (or similar)

Day 8 Discover Bonampak’s incredible collection of preserved murals; to Palenque

After breakfast we travel to Bonampak’s remarkably well-preserved ruins secluded in jungle. Besides the main plaza, much of the site is still taken by nature as this area was only discovered by outsiders in the 1940’s. Bonampak is highly regarded for its murals - highly detailed frescoes which tell the stories and history of the people who lived here, with scenes of human sacrifice, war, ceremonial bloodletting and ritual dancing. We’ll visit the famous Temple of the Murals where you can see three rooms that have brightly colored depictions of Mayan life. Our guide will help decipher the scenes and explain how the Maya were able to create such vibrant hues using natural materials. Following this visit we make our way to the small town of Palenque where we stay for the next two nights. Accommodation: Hotel La Aldea (or similar)

Day 9 Site visit of Palenque; to Misol-Ha waterfall for a refreshing swim

This morning we have a guided tour of the impressive Mayan site of Palenque, one of the most famous in Mexico. The pyramids, sanctuaries and temples, with their sculptured wall-panels and roofs are remarkably well preserved and are probably the finest surviving examples of Mayan buildings. In the afternoon we visit Misol Há waterfall, which powers down a 35-metre drop into a round pool. Surrounded by lush green vegetation it feels like a waterfall deep in the jungle, despite being easily accessible. You will have the chance to walk along a path underneath the waterfall to feel its power and get soaked by its spray or take a refreshing dip in the cool water. Afterwards we return to the hotel and the rest of the evening is spent at leisure. Accommodation: Hotel La Aldea (or similar)

Day 10 To Merida via the traditional village of Becal where hand-woven straw hats are made

Today is a long travel day to the colonial city of Merida. The journey is likely to take around 8 hours without stops. Our journey will be broken to visit the traditional village of Becal where hand-woven straw palm Jipi and Panama hats are made. As well as seeing some local families at work we can taste coconut horchata, a fresh, sweet drink made with rice, coconut and cinnamon that is synonymous with this region. We continue to the colonial city of Mérida. Many of its buildings were constructed using stones from the Mayan city which existed on the site and these are still visible in the walls of the imposing cathedral. The city flourished following the conquest and the 19th century homes designed in French style contribute to the attractive appearance of the historical centre. We should arrive in Merida by the late afternoon. Our accommodation here will be our base for the next three nights. Accommodation: Hotel Caribe (or similar) 

Day 11 Walking tour of Merida; optional visit to Chichen Itza archaeological site

Take in the sights of Merida on a morning walking tour of the ‘White City’ where we discover some of the main plazas and impressive architecture of this cultural hotspot. We’ll see some of the main squares and visit the San Ildefonso Cathedral, one of the oldest churches in Latin America that was built with huge stones dismantled from pyramids. The rest of the day is free to enjoy Merida at your own pace – we recommend a visit to the Gran Museo Maya to help understand the history of the Yucatan region. Alternatively you can join an optional excursion to nearby Chichen Itza, one of the largest Mayan ceremonial centres. Here the impressive El Castillo Pyramid sits in the middle of the site and is surrounded by temples, palaces and ball courts. Accommodation: Hotel Caribe (or similar) 

Day 12 Discover the UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve of Celestun with its mangroves and flamingo colony

This morning we drive to the UNESCO World Heritage Site and World Biosphere Reserve of Celestun. Boarding motorboats, we navigate the winding canals and discover this immense mangrove and wetlands complex including a visit to the permanent colony of Pink flamingos who call this beautiful area home. Returning to the dock, we head to the town of Celestun for a delicious treat of local seafood delights in the shade of a thatched roof restaurant located on the edge of the Gulf of Mexico. There is some free time to enjoy the beach this afternoon, before returning to Merida. Accommodation: Hotel Caribe (or similar) 

Day 13 Visit Yokdzonot Cenote for a swim; to Tulum

Today we leave Merida and travel towards the famous beach town of Tulum, stopping at the Yokdzonot Cenote en route for a refreshing swim. The Yucatan region is famous for its many cenote’s – these freshwater underground pools are the result of collapsed limestone bedrock, creating sinkholes that expose crystal clear water. Yokdzonot Cenote came about as the result of a co-operative in the village between 60 Mayan women and men. It is now one of the largest in the Yucatan region with long tree routes reaching down to the water, as hummingbirds fly overhead and dragonflies dart above the water. Cenotes were revered by the Mayans who believed these were spiritual places to talk with the gods. We aim to arrive in Tulum and our beach-front accommodation by the middle of the afternoon so that you have some time to relax and enjoy the facilities. Accommodation: Los Lirios (or similar) 

Day 14 Morning visit to Sian Kaán Biosphere Reserve; afternoon visit to the Mayan site of Tulum

This morning we have a short drive (45 minutes) to visit the Sian Kaán Biosphere Reserve. Meaning 'origin of the sky' in Mayan, this special biosphere reserve is made up of a large water system, marshes, mangroves and virgin tropical forest. Upon arrival at the reserve, we take a short hike through the jungle to the Muyil Maya temple, before walking along a wooden pathway by the waters edge to board a boat. Accompanied by an expert guide, we discover the reserve by water including stopping at a cenote (sinkhole) that lies underneath the surface. During our visit, there is also the chance to swim in the clear waterways or float along the 'lazy river'. After arriving back on dry land, we return to Tulum where there is the opportunity to have lunch before we visit the famous archaeological site. Whilst Tulum is not the largest of Mayan archaeological sites, it is considered to one of the most beautiful due to its striking location; set on 15-metre high cliffs above the sea. Also known as Zama, or city of dawn, Tulum was the only Mayan archaeological site to be in use at the time of the Spanish conquest. Accommodation: Los Lirios (or similar) 

Day 15 Transfer to Cancun Airport; end

Our trip ends today. Anyone with a flight inclusive package will transfer to Cancun airport in time for the group flight, which usually departs in the evening. Land only clients are free to make onward travel arrangements at any time today, or why not extend your stay and spend a little longer in Tulum to enjoy the facilities of our beach-front hotel.  

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 4,025
Price Per Day: $ 252 per day
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Checking price
Start DateFinish DateDouble StandardDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Nov-02-2019Nov-16-2019$ 4,225No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-16-2019Nov-30-2019$ 4,225No8 spots left Reserve
Jan-11-2020Jan-25-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Feb-01-2020Feb-15-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Mar-07-2020Mar-21-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Mar-21-2020Apr-04-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Apr-04-2020Apr-18-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Jul-25-2020Aug-08-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Aug-15-2020Aug-29-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-07-2020Nov-21-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-14-2020Nov-28-2020$ 4,365No8 spots left Reserve
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ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

5.0
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Value5.0
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Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
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I was introduced to Antarctica in the most amazing way. When we arrived there
was a blanket of heavy fog the team got us on the zodiac and navigated on
compass bearings. Suddenly like the curtain of a stage being pulled back we
sat in sky of blue surrounded by a wild and pristine environment.
See above. Watching whales breech. Smelling penguins before you could see
them. Filming Leopard seals with my gopro. You truely need to be awake 24hrs
a day and have eyes in the back of your head for this trip.


Shelly and the team were amazing. Their passion and commitment and tirless
effort to show what they love and care about the most was amazing


Do take European travel plugs for Ushuaia as well as American.


Enjoy everything this trip has to offer. Remember this is an expedition and
not a five star hotel as some travellers on my trip thought. Things can go
wrong and weather is unpredictable. A real once in a lifetime trip.


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ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

5.0
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Guide5.0
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Another fantastic trip to the wilderness that is Antarctica. Brilliant from
start to finish with awesome scenery and wildlife experiences throughout on a
fantastic ship.
Experiencing the beauty of both Oraca's and Humpback whales upclose to to
zodiacs and a brillient night spent camping on the Ice of Antartctica.


Woody was excellent from start to finish, extremely knowledgeable and
passionate about Antarctica, friendly, open and worked brilliantly with
the Ships Captain/Crew to get us lots of fantastic landings and cruising
opportunities. He was ably assisted by the rest of his expedition crew who
were all also fantastic.


Go... A definite must do atleast once in your life. Antarctica is awesome.


Although some people might conside this type of trip as being expensive,
I'd qualify it by saying this was my second trip to Antarctica and
althought it is not a cheap holiday it is great value for money, I
wouldn't have returned otherwise.The Ship is fantastic, food was
excellent and all the crew were so friendly, helpful and ofcourse
knowledgeable.


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ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
A holiday that exceeded all expectations. Stunning scenery, abundant
wildlife, a great team and a superb boat and crew
Seeing that being a penguin parent is true dedication!


"Blessed are the flexible for they shall not be bent out of
shape....." A quote from a member of the group that sums up Woody.
Excellent does also.


Book it NOW!


I knew we'd see a lot of wildlife and had hoped I'd see an albatross
- there were 6 gliding around the boat on the first day! The excesses just
got greater each dayafter that!


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ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
An absolutely amazing trip!  It had been a long time coming as I booked
it 18 months previously, but it did not disappoint.
There was so much that was fantastic....the sheer beauty and enormousness
(don’t know if that is a real word) of it all, unspoilt by humans, but
the most inspiring moment was watching an iceberg calve, and then because
its’ centre of gravity had changed, virtually turn over.......and I
think I was the only one sitting there watching it!   And yes,
Paul, I do have photographic evidence!!


Kirsten was professional, and made the best of the weather conditions.


Travelling to Ushuaia is very long and tedious, especially if you are on the
early flight from Gatwick to Madrid (8 hour wait at Madrid), and even if you
have been checked straight through to Ushuaia, you need to collect your
baggage, even if you have the domestic flight from the international terminal
(very confusing....nearly left my luggage at BA airport). 3 days
travelling on board without setting foot on land, can seem a long time, but
there are presentations given by various members of the expedition staff that
give you an insight to the Antarctic region, its wildlife, and history. You
can also go on deck if weather permits, or up to the bridge viewing platforms
to pass the time of day and take pictures of the birdlife, or icebergs on
your journey south.Once you make your first zodiac trip though, everything
previously is forgotten, and take Paul’s advice....don’t have
your viewfinder surgically implanted to your eye, make sure you take stock of
where you are, and enjoy every moment of it.We were lucky with the weather,
and only missed 1 landing, but be prepared that if the weather is bad, you
will not be able to go ashore or do the zodiac cruises, and be prepared for
some ‘iffy’ moments on the zodiacs if the sea is a bit
rough.  It was my first time on zodiacs, and now feels that I could cope
with anything. It didn’t happen to me, but remember the Aerolineas
 Argentinas weight restrictions for hand-luggage; 5kg.  If you can
put your camera equipment in a backpack and have it on your back, they
don’t seem to mind.  Also, leave room in your case/bag for the
Quark Parka.  I wore the inner fleece for flying and packed the outer
shell, but still fairly cumbersome.


Just book it!!  You’ll not regret it.  This was my first
polar trip, but certainly not my last!!


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ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
A fantastic trip encompassing magnificent scenery and wildlife viewing.
The whole trip was an incredible experience from start to finish, but for me
the highlight was the afternoon spent kayaking in Paradise Bay.  Imaging
360 degrees of snow capped mountains, blue skies, sea ice and perfect
mountain reflections in the sea and you still won't be close to
experiencing how beautiful the place was.


Kirsten was professional throughout and made sure we experienced the best
that the Antarctic Peninsula has to offer. 


Be prepared for the fact that you have 3 days at sea from Ushuaia before you
reach the Peninsula and 2 days on the way back. There are plenty of
presentations on the ship to help pass the time and prepare you for the trip
but it can seem like a long time since you have left home before you are able
to leave the ship and do some landings.  Having said that, the sea days
are forgotten in an instant as soon as you reach the peninsula and the trip
starts properly.We were incredibly lucky with the weather; there was only 1
landing which we were unable to make as the conditions would not allow it.
 You need to be aware though that if weather conditions aren't
favourable you won't be able to do all of the landings or zodiac cruises
which could potentially detract from the overall enjoyment of the
trip. Aerolinas Argentinas can be quite strict with their luggage
allowances; there is a 5kg limit for hand luggage on the internal flight. If
you are carrying a lot of photographic equipment then your hand luggage will
be way over this.  However, if you have your backpack on your back when
you check in then they do not seem to weigh it; if it is on a luggage trolley
then they will weigh it and potentially ask you to pack some of your hand
luggage into your checked luggage. Do not wear expensive jewellery in
Buenos Aires and leave your valuables locked in the safe in the hotel. 


Go ahead and book the trip - it is truly an experience of a lifetime.


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Lovely country, people, and food.

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
This review describes the revised, Lombok-less itinerary. So, no Rinjani,
sadly, but Sumeru is a decent (and difficult) substitute if one is willing to
ascend it (the summit is optional).

For me, this trip was a fine mix of culture (food, people, history, temples)
and hiking, with photographic opportunities wherever one looked. We had three
fantastic sunrises, some dynamite sunsets (especially Merbabu), and we got
very lucky with weather, being barely affected by rain. Our only real
disappointment came at Ijen where the gases from the crater would not clear
enough for a good view - but we got a good workout in while testing our
strength against that of the miners whose loads sulphur are very heavy.

There are some long drives, but most of our group found it easy to sleep on
the bus.
Ascending Sumeru. It's a difficult and frustrating climb (like summit day on
Kilimanjaro) but the view from the top is special.


Our guide (Wira) was attentive, helpful, fluent in four bazillion Indonesian
languages, and a damned good multitasker.


Most of the hiking is gentle but very dusty (we were there in the dry season)
so a buff is recommended to avoid "volcano nose" and care is needed to
protect camera mechanisms. The extension at Candidasa was a perfect and
relaxing way to end (I recommend staying as long as you can :)). Indonesians
are very friendly and you will be asked to pose for THEIR travel photographs,
so be prepared to feel like a rock-star.


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Details

Group Size:

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 15

Age Notes

Min. Age: 16

Additional Information:

  • 14 nights in a mixture of standard and comfortable hotels, all with en suite facilities
  • Travel by private minibus, boats and internal flight

Trip ID#:

exodus-AHX

Meals Included:

Dinner: All breakfasts, one lunch and two dinners are included.  Breakfast generally consist of fruits, cereals, beans and eggs. Meals vary from around USD10-18 for lunch and dinner in the Mexican highlands to around USD15 - 30 in the Yucatan area. A beer costs on average USD3-5. There is a lot more to Mexican cuisine than fajitas and tacos and we have the opportunity to discover the wealth of dishes on offer in the different regions that we visit. 

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