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Secrets of the Mayas

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Overview

Start off in Mexico City before travelling to Guatemala, and back to Mexico to appreciate the true historical significance of the Mayan region. Enjoy the hustle and bustle of Mexico City, the historical architecture of Antigua in Guatemala, UNESCO sites in Flores and the important Mayan sites in Palenque, Campeche and Merida in Mexico.

  • Visit Mexico's colourful capital Discover the city during a city tour as well as visiting the site of the Pyramids of the Sun and the Moon and the archaeological site of Teotihuacan.
  • Experience the true magic of Mayan history and culture From the historic tour of Antigua in Guatemala to the Lost City of Palenque that vanished for over thousand years, there is a plethora of Mayan history contained in this region.
  • VIP door-to-door travel service Aimed at the over-50s traveller, this tour will take the stress out of travelling by picking you up and taking you back home.

This tour is aimed at the over 50's market, however, a travelling companion or family member may be aged 40 or over. Please note: the tour involves some long but rewarding journeys.

Day 1 - Mexico City
Arrive in Mexico's ancient and high altitude capital early this morning and travel to your hotel. Spend the day as you please. Optional afternoon excursion to bohemian Coyoacan to see the Diego Rivera Studio Museum, the Frida Khalo Museum and the Palacio Nacional. Dinner is at your hotel, the Hampton Inn.

Day 2 - Mexico City
Head out on a tour to see the Zocalo, and the Paseo de la Reforma. This grand avenue crosses the city and is scattered with many monuments. You'll also visit the world-famous Anthropological Museum, and the Pre-Columbian, Mesoamerican archaeological site of Teotihuacan, home to the mighty Pyramids of the Sun and the Moon. Relax over an included lunch in a local restaurant. Spend the night once again at the Hampton Inn.

Day 3 - Mexico City to Antigua (Guatemala)
Fly to Guatemala City and transfer to Antigua, a UNESCO-listed city overlooking three large volcanoes in Guatemala's highlands. Spend the night at El Meson de Maria or Camino Real Hotel.

Day 4 - Antigua
Embark on a tour of this beautiful and historic city that has churches and monasteries on every corner. Once part of Spain's colonial empire, the tour includes the haunting ruins of Catedral de Santiago, and the beautiful and faded facades of the Central Plaza. You'll also see colourful textiles being woven, and learn how jade and nephrite is transformed into jewellery. You're free to eat out independently tonight. Accommodation at El Meson de Maria or Camino Real Hotel.

Day 5 - Antigua to Lake Atitlan
Leave your hotel and travel to the Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican site of Iximiche, one-time capital of the Kaqchikel, to see the pyramid temples. Continue to Lake Atitlan, Central America's deepest lake. Spend a night at the Villa Santa Caterina, which sits on the lake shoreline, or the Atitlan Hotel.

Day 6 - Lake Atitlan
Head for the town of Chichicastenango to visit the fabulous open-air market where you can buy everything, from textiles to pottery. Later, take a boat trip across one of the world's most beautiful lakes - prepare to be wowed by the views. Continue by road to see three tranquil fishing and farming villages. Spend the night at the Villa Santa Caterina, which sits on the lake shoreline, or the Atitlan Hotel.

Day 7- Atitlan to Flores
Visit the picturesque village of Santiago Atitlan to see the Mayans weaving their colourful textiles. Transfer to Guatemala City for an internal flight to Flores. Stay the night at the Villa Maya in a peaceful nature reserve, or the Peten Esplendido Hotel.

Day 8 - Flores
Bound to be a highlight of your holiday, today you will embark on a full-day excursion to Tikal National Park to see the astounding ruins of this UNESCO-listed, 8th-century Mayan city, which lies within the rainforest.

Day 9 - Flores to Palenque [Mexico]
Cross the border into Mexico and stay for two nights at the lovely Villa Mercedes.

Day 10 - Palenque
Visit Palenque - the 8th-century Mayan City that vanished into the jungle for over a thousand years.

Day 11 - Palenque to Campeche
Take a long but rewarding journey that transports you along the coast to the UNESCO-listed city of Campeche. Founded by the Spanish in 1540 and developed as a colonial trading port, it was heavily fortified due to constant attack by pirates. Stay overnight outside the city at the Tucan Siho.

Day 12 - Campeche to Merida
Today you'll visit Campeche, before continuing to Uxmal, one of Mexico's most important late-Mayan sites. Dating back over a thousand years, its striking layout and decoration reveals real understanding of astronomy. Stay two nights at the Hacienda Sotuta de Peon, a peaceful and charming hotel in the midst of Yucatan Peninsula's plantations.

Day 13 - Merida
This morning, travel by mule truck, on an included tour of a restored 19th-century agave estate, where you'll to visit the cenotes - natural sinkholes with inviting natural swimming pools. Later, visit Chichen Itza, which shows many different styles of Mayan architecture including Kukulkan, a step pyramid that rises to almost 100 feet. Enjoy a farewell dinner at the hotel this evening.

Day 14 - Merida to UK
Enjoy a restful morning and lunch at the hotel. In the afternoon, travel to colonial Merida for a city tour. Transfer to the airport for your flight to Mexico City, and connecting flight back to the UK.

Day 15 - UK
Arrive back in the UK after a memorable trip!

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Secrets of the Mayas

secrets of the mayas
  • Day 1Mexico City
  • Day 2Mexico City
  • Day 3Mexico City to Antigua (Guatemala)
  • Day 4Antigua
  • Day 5Antigua to Lake Atitlan
  • Day 6Lake Atitlan
  • Day 7Atitlan to Flores
  • Day 8Flores
  • Day 9Flores to Palenque
  • Day 10Palenque
  • Day 11Palenque to Campeche
  • Day 12Campeche to Merida
  • Day 13Merida
  • Day 14Merida to UK
  • Day 15UK

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