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Activities & Transport
- Meet the Locals
- Car with driver
Main travel focus
Flavors of Yucatan
- Market tour in Merida for fresh ingredients for your cooking class
- Mezcal tasting
- Cacao Museum and chocolate tasting
- Learn to make handmade tortillas
Come and get a taste of the Yucatan Peninsula during this 8-day trip through this colorful region. If you have a craving for authentic Mexican food then this trip is perfect. We must warn you, there are no nachos, burritos or taco shells in sight, this is all about traditional gastronomy; from handmade tortillas to Mayan cooking methods.
Meet local people, chefs from other parts of Mexico, and foreigners who've fallen in love with the food here, all of whom want to share their love of food with you. Take a cooking class in Merida and buy your ingredients fresh from the market in the morning, visit a chocolate museum and find out all about the cocoa bean in Mexico, have lunch with local families, learn the secrets of handmade tortillas in Tulum and much more! If you have more time, we can also include a trip to Mexico City to experience another variety of Mexican gastronomy!
- 7 nights accommodation in double rooms
- 7 x breakfast
- Private transfers in air-conditioned car with private Spanish-speaking driver
- English-speaking guides and cooking class teachers
- Entrance fees
- International flights and airport taxes
- 4 nights stay in Mexico City with more gastronomy-related activities (from around $1,000 USD per person)
Example Trip to customize
Welcome to the Capital of the Yucatan Peninsula
Arrive at Merida airport and meet your transfer to your hotel. Spend the afternoon settling into your hotel and explore your surroundings. Take a walking tour in the White City of Merida. The capital of Yucatan, has maintained its captivating colonial charm and strong personality while enjoying great economic growth in recent years. You will find many historical monuments, churches and restaurants with both local and international food.
The city is dotted with pleasant little squares which are perfect to relax in, have a drink and listen to a marimba-playing band. Spend the evening exploring the handicrafts market which offers numerous souvenirs like the renowned huipils (colorful embroidered tunics), the authentic "Panama" hats, the true Yucatecan all-cotton hammocks and many more.
Learn to Make Local Cuisine with Fruits and Vegetables
When you think of Mexican food, what comes to mind? Nachos? Burritos? Tacos? Whichever it is, it's probably full of meat and cheese! Well, here is your opportunity to learn about traditional Mayan cooking, using only plant-based ingredients.
Take a stroll through the market and choose your ingredients with your guide Erin and then return to her house where you will make your lunch, completely from scratch! Enjoy these exciting flavors and take these recipes home with you to share with your family and friends!
Your overnight stay is at the Kukā y Naranjo Hotel, where morning yoga classes are available on request on Monday, Thursday and Saturday.
Cenote Tour Off-the-Beaten-Tracks
Cenotes are natural pools of fresh, crystal-clear water, where the sun's rays create spectacular lighting effects. After a stop at a typical Mayan market where the colors of fruits and vegetables are matched only by those of the women’s traditional clothing, you will explore two Cenotes and take a refreshing swim in the forest.
Have lunch at Doña Ana’s house. She is a Mayan indigenous woman, who invites you into her home and shares the local Yucatan cuisine with you.
After lunch, you’ll visit the Santa Elena Chocolate Museum Delights and the Museum of Cocoa. Learn about the history of chocolate and how it is closely linked with Mayan history.
See how cacao has transformed from the pre-hispanic era, when it was used as a bargaining tool, to the bars of chocolate we know and love today. See how cocoa grows on trees and prepare your own beverage with a choice of ingredients.
Conquer the City of Uxmal
This archaeological site is peaceful and not widely visited by tourists. Uxmal, in Mayan language, means “Thrice Built," but in reality, it was built five times. One of the best-preserved sites of the peninsula includes the Great Pyramid, House of the Turtles, a vast ballgame court. and the Governor's Palace. Water is really scarce in the region which explains the presence of representations of the rain god Chac-Mool.
The Hacienda Sotuta de Peon is a living museum and the only Mexican hacienda where henequen (Sisal) is still produced. You’ll learn about the production process of the 1900s, visit the fields on a small horse-pulled trolley, and finally, go swimming in a Cenote on the farm.
During the 17th century, the Sisal fibers, called Yucatan’s green gold, were used for things like ropes for Spanish caravels and baskets. Its production made Merida grand and rich.
Rinconada Del Convento
Chichen Itza, the Mayan Wonder
After breakfast, head to Chichen Itza, one of the Seven Wonders of the modern world. Built by the Maya, and reorganized by the Toltecs, Chichen Itza symbolizes the unification of the two religious cultures. The site was the most important religious center of the peninsula and is the largest archaeological site in Yucatan.
After, travel to Valladolid, a small and authentic Mexican town, that is delightful to wander around. This peaceful town, built in the 16th century by Francisco de Montejo, is dominated by the imposing sobriety of the Franciscan convent San Bernardino de Siena. Appreciate the pretty pastel-colored houses, while sampling some local food, like Longaniza, a smoked pork sausage).
Continue your trip towards the Caribbean Coast with its endless beaches and turquoise waters, which host the 2nd largest coral reef in the world.
How to Prepare Tortillas
Today, step off the touristic track and live an authentic Mexican culinary experience at Rivera Kitchen, Tulum! Ancient Mexican culinary techniques and flavors, fresh ingredients, tortillas from scratch... everything is ready for you to enjoy a cultural immersion in Mexican food, culture, and traditions, all this in a beautiful home, nestled among the always green and beautiful Yucatan jungle.
Many of the dishes you will learn come from family recipes and after, you will sit down to enjoy the fruits of your labor along with a "jarrito de agua fresca" or beer, or wine, or all!
In the afternoon, cool down in the beautiful Cenote Zacil-ha, a natural pool of fresh and crystalline water created millions of years ago by a meteorite. Take a dip in this magical pool!
Classic Tulum Bike Tour
See the best of Tulum, while riding quiet roads, forest trails and through the pueblo with a variety of natural and historic attractions that the town is famous for.
Stops along the way include the archeological site of Tulum, a World Heritage Site which sits on a cliff edge facing the Caribbean Sea. You will also jump in a refreshing Cenote, learn about Mayan traditions and beliefs and the art of native beekeeping.
In the afternoon, sample some of the best Tacos on the coast of Quintana Roo and sample Mojitos, ice cream and the local music in town.
This is an insider's view of Tulum, led by experienced and dedicated guides who share their love of nature, history, biking and fun with you!