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All entrance fees included
Free hotel pickup and drop-off included
Led by a local guide
Upon pickup from your hotel at 10am, travel by comfortable coach to Monte Alban, located approximately 20 minutes from Oaxaca. Translated as ‘White Mountain,’ the immense archeological site stands atop a mountain plateau overlooking the city and valleys below. Discover the UNESCO World Heritage-listed ruins with your knowledgeable guide on a 2.5-hour tour, and learn about the significance of the pre-Columbian ruins as explore the complex. Visit pyramids, temples and altars, as well as several residential structures – all constructed around the rectangular Grand Plaza, a large open area on the flattened plateau. Climb to the South Platform (Plataforma Sur), a large area known for its wide staircase and great panoramic views. You’ll learn interesting facts about Zapotec culture as you view the ancient ball court and ceremonial platforms, including a series of significant rock carvings called The Dancers (Los Danzantes). Don’t miss some of Monte Alban’s 170 tombs, whose excavations revealed a range of paintings and stone carvings. Re-board the coach for San Antonio Arrazola, a small and quiet town at the foothills of Monte Alban. Spend approximately 45 minutes walking around and taking in the local folk art, such as the world-renowned woodcarvings called alebrijes. Admire the ingenuity of the artisans, comprising 80 local families, who carve the figures – depicting a fantastic zoology of mythical creations and monsters – from the copal tree. Next, head to Cuilapam de Guerrero, a traditional town that holds feasts of saints throughout the year. Visit the Cuilapam Convent, a 16th-century Dominican convent known for its unfinished basilica and capilla abierta, or open chapel. Learn about this typical colonial feature, constructed for gathering a greater number of indigenous people for conversion to Catholocism. Around 2:45pm, take a break for lunch at Hacienda Cuilapam (own expense). You’ll make your last stop around 4:30pm in San Bartolo Coyotepec, a town whose artisans are famous for their black pottery (barro negro), fashioned with techniques used since pre-Columbian times. The town boasts several dozen workshops, the Oaxaca State Museum of Popular Art (MEAPO) and a craft market featuring the work of more than a dozen local families, some with international acclaim. You’ll visit the beautiful 16th-century San Bartolo Coyotepec Church before your guide transports you back to Oaxaca with hotel drop-off around 6pm.
Professional English- and Spanish-speaking guide
Hotel pickup and drop-off
Confirmation will be received at time of booking
Oaxaca hotels. If staying at a residency/house, meeting point is Hotel Quinta Real in the historical center.
Returns to original departure point at approximately 6pm