Zacatecas (1).JPG

EL CAMINO REAL
DE
TIERRA ADENTRO

MAR 2- 20, 2023
CDMX TO ZACATECAS
M E X I C O

QUICK INFORMATION

Starts & Ends: Mexico City, Mexico
Option for intro to Mexico City, Mexico

Group Size:  14 Maximum
Age Group:  19+

HOTEL LOCATIONS
Price based on shared accommodations


1 Night     - Mexico City
2 Nights   - Tepotzotlan
3 Nights   - San Miguel de Allende 

3 Nights   - Guanajuato City

1 Night     - Mineral de Pozos

PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE ACCOMMODATIONS IN PATZCUARO
 

10 Guests            $100,000 MXN  Each
11 Guests            $96,000 MXN  Each
12 Guests            $92,000 MXN  Each
13 Guests            $90,000 MXN  Each
14 Guests            $88,000 MXN  Each
15 Guests            $86,000 MXN Each
16 Guests            $84,0000 MXN Each


For US Currency, divide by 20 for an approximate conversion.  For Canadian Currency, divide by 15 for an approximate conversion.

INTRODUCTION

There were three major trade routes of Mexico that intersected in Mexico City.  The first route was through the Port of Veracruz, while an extension of the Silk Road was later carved from Acapulco to central Mexico, due to the Manila Galleons, which were Spanish trading ships that connected with the Philippines.  What became the route of riches, was El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro, or Royal Interior Road, which followed ancient indigenous trade routes through the silver-rich territory of Mexico to what is now Santa Fe, New Mexico.  Coined "Mexico's Silver Road," this extraordinary region is bursting with opulent architecture and incredible UNESCO sites, all built from the riches of Mexico's silver mines.

 

Join us and explore the region known as "The door to the Royal Road," or La Puerta del Camino Real.  This adventure covers UNESCO sites including several cities we will stay in, bridges, churches, and a portion of the original road.  Don't miss this epic journey through Mexico's intercontinental trade route that was key to powerful transformations around the world. 

 

THE HUB OF MEXICO'S TRADE ROUTES

Day One: Wednesday March 1, 2023

Hotel Location:  Mexico City, Mexico

Date:  Thursday January 20, 2022

Please be in Mexico City by 5PM to meet your guides and fellow guests. We will meet in the hotel lobby at 5:30 for transport to dinner. If you would like assistance getting to the hotel, we can make arrangements for you.

 A JOURNEY OF A THOUSAND MILES BEGINS

Day Two: Thursday March 2, 2023

Hotel Location:  Tepotzotlan, Hidalgo 

This morning we depart Mexico City for the quaint village of Santiago Tlautla, where we will enjoy a short walk from Puente la Colmena, along an historic portion of the original road to Hacienda la Cañada. Our next stop is Sitio del Arcos, or the Aqueduct of Xalpan, which is the highest aqueduct in Mexico. Measuring 438 meters in length, and 61 meters in height, this monumental structure was built by the Jesuits in the 18th century to bring water to their college in Tepotzotlan. Guests may cross the Aqueduct for stunning views, and the adventurous may choose to enjoy the ziplines or take a hot-air balloon ride. (These latter two activities are not included in the price.)  We will then make our way to Tepotzotlan, where we will spend two nights.

TREASURES OF TEPOTZOTLAN

Day Three:  Friday March 3, 2023

Hotel Location:  Tepotzotlan Hidalgo

This morning we will visit the Museo Nacional del Virreinato and the Temple San Francisco Javier. We will enjoy free time this afternoon, so guests can shop, explore or rest.

AN ANCIENT CITY TO A UNESCO TREASURE

Day Four: Saturday March 4, 2023

Hotel Location:  San Miguel de Allende

The ancient city of Tollan-Xicocotitlan is more commonly named Tula, which is a Castellano-interpretation of Tollan, and name of the town and river that irrigates its' lands. This ancient city was the capital of the Toltec Empire and is most famed for featuring four, 15-foot high anthropomorphic statues on Pyramid B, which became known as 'The Atlanteans of Tula.'  We will spend the morning here, then have lunch and wine tasting at Dos Buhos Winery, before entering the colourful UNESCO city of San Miguel de Allende.

COBBLESTONES & GALLERIES

Day Five: Sunday March 5, 2023

Hotel Location:  San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato​

This morning we will enjoy a walking tour of San Miguel De Allende's centro, before breaking for free time. As San Miguel de Allende was a cross-roads of El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro and La Ruta del Independencia, there is a lot of intriguing history here to explore! This evening we will have a dinner-lecture to learn more about the history of this region.

MEXICO'S SISTINE CHAPEL

Day Six: Monday March 6, 2023

Hotel Location:  San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato​

This morning we will visit the incredible UNESCO protected Sanctuaro de Jesus de Nazarene in the nearby village of Atotonilco. Famed as Mexico's Sistine Chapel, this church is painted from floor to ceiling, and has a fascinating history. Following our visit, guests have the option of returning to San Miguel for a day of free time, or may stay in Atotonilco for the morning to enjoy the hot springs. Though now a modern spa, these mineral waters were once a destination for indigenous warriors who came here to heal. Our van will return guests to the city, and return for those who would like to enjoy these medicinal waters.

PRE-HISPANIC PERSPECTIVES

Day Seven: Tuesday March 7, 2023

Hotel Location:  Guanajuato City, Guanajuato​

Dr. Rossana Quiroz Ennis is respected for her ground-breaking research at the ancient Otomi city of Cañada de la Virgen, which has inevitably changed the way Pre-Columbian society has been studied by the west. Dr. Rossana Quiroz Ennis has dedicated her life's work to archaeo-astronomical observation and research, and is the President of the Museo de Astronomia de Prehispánica. We will visit the site this morning, and enjoy a special pre-Columbian lunch at the Museum. We will then depart for the fantastic city of Guanajuato for dinner and an enchanting evening street-theatre performance.

THE OPULENT CITY OF TUNNELS

Day Eight:  Wednesday March 8, 2023

Hotel Location: Guanajuato City, Guanajuato​

This morning we will enjoy a walking tour of the city, before breaking away for an afternoon of free time. Enjoy the view of this magnificent city from the Pipila, shop in the famous Hidalgo Market, and enjoy exploring and photographing Guanajuato's incredible architecture. We are not including the Mummy Museum on our tour anymore, as some guests have found it quite distressing. Please let us know in advance, if you would like tickets for the museum, so we can make arrangements. This evening we will enjoy a special dinner party.

AN ANCIENT BRIDGE THAT CONNECTED THE WORLD

Day Nine: Thursday March 9, 2023

Hotel Location:  Guanajuato City, Guanajuato​

This morning we are off on an adventure to a beautiful Pueblo Magico with an exceptional bridge and historical centre that is protected by UNESCO as significant to El Camino del Tierra Adentro. We will have lunch, explore, and return to Guanajuato City on time for dinner.

A MOMENTARY LAPSE OF TIME

Day Ten: Friday March 10, 2023

Hotel Location:  Mineral de Pozos, Guanajuato​

This morning, we depart Guanajuato City for the ceramic galleries in Dolores Hidalgo, which are often confused as being Talavera. We will visit the church that is famous for Father Hidalgo's "Cry of Dolores," before visiting Cuna de Tierra for a charcuterie platter and wine. Arriving in Mineral de Pozos, we will visit ex-Hacienda & Mine ruins of Santa Brigida, which is a picturesque and intriguing site.

NATIONAL TREASURE

Day Eleven: Saturday March 11, 2023

Hotel Location:  San Luis de Potosi​

Our journey this morning, begins with a descent into the bowls of the earth at Mina San Rafael, where we will witness a working mine. Our next stop is Santa Maria del Rio, which is revered for the finest rebozos in all of Mexico. We will learn about the techniques behind this national treasure, as well as the fusion of skills and styles that surfaced due to contact. From Santa Maria del Rio, we will head to the stunning and under-rated city of San Luis Potosi.

A MILLITARY GARRISON & THE PLAN OF SAN LUIS POTOSI

Day Twelve:  Sunday March 12, 2023

Hotel Location:  San Luis Potosi

Founded by Pedro Carilla Davila in 1569 as a military garrison, the fort at Ojueles de Jalisco was the first of seven built on the route from Mexico City to Zacatecas, and remains the only one standing today. Viceroy Enriquez de Almanza requested the construction of these forts, as protection against the Chichimeca Warriors under the legendary Maxorro. The Viceroy's concerns were not unwarranted, for the Spaniards were already in the midst of a brutal war with the Chichimeca, following the aftermath of September 8, 1546 when Chichimeca warriors introduced the Spanish to the silver-rich ore at Cerro La Bufa, in what is now the city of Zacatecas. This fortress is an important stop along our journey, as we will learn interesting insights into the struggle for power in this region, along with the order of events.

 

San Luis Potosi is the only location in the state of the same name, to be recognized as part of El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro. That said, this city is not often visited by foreign tourists, yet is packed with exceptional colonial architecture, museums and pedestrian areas that are fun and interesting to explore. The Plan of San Luis Potosi is a reference to November 20, 1910, and the start of the Mexican Revolution, which we will be learning about along this journey.

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A TIME TRAVELLERS DREAM

Day:  Fourteen - Monday March 13, 2023

Hotel Location:  Real de Catorce, San Luis Potosi​

Time:  9:00 AM

 

Our departure from San Luis Potosi at 8:30 AM means arriving in Cerro de San Pedro for a morning spent learning the history behind the ghost town that was the foundation of the capital. From here, we will head to Real de Catorce, arriving on time to enjoy a charcuterie dinner at our hotel, along with a mezcal tasting.

PILGRIMAGE TO CERRO DEL QUEMADO

Day:  Fifteen - Tuesday March 14, 2023

Hotel Location:  Real de Catorce, San Luis Potosi​

Time:  9:00 AM

Our guides will meet us by 9:00 AM, for one of the most exciting adventures of this tour. Travel by horseback from the village of Real de Catorce, through crumbling ruins of old haciendas and silver-lords, to the sacred mountain-top temple of Cerro del Quemado. We will reach 11,000 feet, and will hike for about 15-20 minutes to reach the temple. From here, we will enjoy fantastic views of the peyote desert below, where Wixaritari peoples harvest the sacred plant for their ceremonies.

Upon returning to Real de Catorce, we will dismount our horses, have lunch and enjoy a mesmerizing walk-about the town, visiting the alluring Church of Guadalupe, haunted bull-ring and galvanic Palenque Theatre, which was built for cock fighting. Browse the countless shops and galleries to collect authentic Wixaritari beadwork, and ride a horse back to the hotel!

JEEP WILLY RIDE TO WIRIKUTA

Day:  Sixteen - Wednesday March 15, 2023

Hotel Location:  Real de Catorce, San Luis Potosi​

Time:  9:00 AM

Here is your chance to really put your hair down and embark on a hair-raising adventure that your back may remember for a few hours or days, depending on your age and physical shape. It's one everyone should prepare for, as this jeep-willy ride to the desert is one for the bucket list. Descending from 10,000 to 6,000 feet in a matter of 40 minutes, this narrow, winding stone road constructed by hand in the 1500's, delivers you to the peyote desert, revered by the Wixaritari as Wirikuta, or place where the sun was born. Hold onto your belongings and wits - you will long to write postcards about this day! Upon returning to Real de Catorce, we will enjoy free time so guests can browse the galleries, or relax.

PUEBLA FANTASMA & PLATERESQUE FANTASIES

Day:  Seventeen - Thursday March 16, 2023

Hotel Location:  Zacatecas City, Zacatecas​

Time:  9:00 AM

This morning we will depart the hotel for a thrilling climb on horseback, up the steep switch-backs to Puebla Fantasma, which overlooks the small village of Real de Catorce. Enjoy stunning views and the chance to ride through the crumbling structures of a forgotten history. We will return to Real de Catorce around noon for lunch, before departing for the 4 hour journey through hillsides of cactus to the glamorous city of Zacatecas.

SPAIN'S GARDEN OF EDEN

Day:  Eighteen - Friday March 17, 2023

Hotel Location:  Zacatecas City, Zacatecas​

Time:  9:00 AM

Our adventure ends in the city where the riches of Spain's conquest of Mexico truly began, for it is here where Chichimeca warriors first introduced Spaniards to the silver deposits, which resulted in the construction of Mina el Eden - which is now an exciting mine-museum. After an engrossing experience underground, we will ascend to the peak of La Bufa via a tram car, with stunning views of the city.

Our next stop is the enriching museum of Rafael Coronel, whose extensive mask and art collection is housed in the ex-convento de San Francisco.

THE RAZED CITY OF CHICOMOZTOC

Day:  Nineteen - Saturday March 18, 2023

Hotel Location:  Zacatecas City, Zacatecas​

Time:  9:00 AM

We will depart Zacatecas early to beat the heat of the day. The razed city of Chicomoztoc has bewildered archaeologists since its discovery, though the one certainty is that this city was once burned to the ground. Many theories surround who built this fortress, and what groups moved through this region. As this site is located along the ancient northern trade route of Mesoamerica, some historians ponder whether it existed as a trade centre. This surprising site holds many secrets, and is stunningly beautiful. We will have lunch in Guadalupe, before visiting the Convent of Guadalupe, which houses one of the largest collections of religious art in all of the Americas.

HOMEWARD BOUND

Day:  Twenty-One - Monday March 20, 2023

Hotel Location:  N/A​

Time:  TBA

This morning we say goodbye, and part ways. Your guides will return by van to Michoacan State, and guests will fly into Mexico International Airport early enough to connect with departing flights. Please allow us to confirm your flight time back to CDMX prior to booking your own flight home.

Please check out our 3 Night Add-On that will take a group of guests to Mexico City, for the easiest flight options!

PHOTO GALLERY