Dates and Cost
No schedule dates at this time….Contact us if you are interested in this trip.
About This Trip
We have spent several years exploring the Yucatan Peninsula for our birding trips. One good thing about birding is that it takes you all over the place. We always thought it would be a great place to offer a trip with an emphasis on the rich culture of the area- and now we are doing just that!
The Yucatan Peninsula is made up of three states, Quintana Roo, Campeche and Yucatan, and it has been inhabited by the Mayans since before the Early Classic period (250-600 AD). The indigenous Mayan culture is alive and well to this day, and it is one of the great draws of this area. Combine this with the strong Spanish influence and an exotic natural environment and the result is a fascinating place to visit.
On our trip to the Yucatan, we will spend time in Merida, also called La Ciudad Blanca, where we’ll tour the state capital, do a Home and Garden Tour, explore the markets, visit museums and learn about the history and culture of this great city. Beyond ‘la ciudad’, we’ll take a boat trip to see flamingos in the Celestun Biosphere Reserve and enjoy a delicious seafood lunch on the beach. We’ll look into the past by visiting Hacienda Yacxopuil, an unrestored hacienda that shows what life was like back when the sisal plantations dominated the countryside. We’ll explore the Mayan ruins of Uxmal and the hilly Puuc region and the Pueblo Magico of Izamal, where past and present live side by side. The Convento de San Antonio de Padua, sits on top of ancient Mayan ruins, the stones that were used to build the church; and all the while, the massive pyramid of Kinich Kakmu looms nearby. The atrium of this golden monastery the largest Catholic open air atrium in the world after St. Peters in Rome! The juxtaposition of Mayan and modern day is a true representation of the duality of the culture in this region. Here we also enjoy a cooking class to learn more about the traditional cuisine and learn how to say all the strange names on the menus as well as what they are!
In the elegant, colonial town of Valladolid, we visit the markets and the central plaza, which is home to some of the major occurrences in the history of the Yucatan; and today it is home to a beautiful church, traditional street vendors and great stores, restaurants, cafés and hotels. No trip to the Yucatan is complete without visiting Chichen Itza, so we stop in there for a walk through history and a night at the elegant Hacienda Chichen, where the archeologist used to stay. We end our trip at the mellowest place on the Riviera Maya, Tulum. Here, not only do we visit the dramatic seaside ruins of Tulum, once a very important place on the trade routes for the Mayans, but we also take a trip into the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve to appreciate the natural wonders of this part of the world. Finally, we have a day to just relax on the white sandy beach and begin to absorb all that we have seen on our trip.
Throughout the Yucatan, there are great choices in lodging, and we have sought out the best places to stay and eat each place we go. In Merida, we stay at a beautifully restored hacienda with impeccable service. Outside of the city, we are treated to nights at several other restored haciendas that give you a glimpse into the grandeur of life in the colonial days, where the hacienda was the central element of each town- in the middle of the jungle! On the coast, we stay at a comfortably appointed eco-hotel where you can walk to breakfast barefoot in the sand! Our meals throughout the trip are highlights of each day. The predominant food is the traditional Yucatecan fare, which varies slightly from town to town, interspersed with fresh seafood feasts and traditional Mexican cuisine…with a Yucatecan twist!
This trip starts in Merida and ends in Cancun.
To book your trip or for more information, please contact us by email or call 888-383-0062.