Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description, including admission charges where applicable.
Day 1 ARRIVE IN CANCUN, MEXICO
Welcome to Cancun! At 6 pm, meet your fellow traveling companions for a welcome drink. Your Tour Director will prepare you for your upcoming adventure.
Day 2 CANCUN–EK’ BALAM–VALLADOLID–UXMAL
This morning, visit the colonial city of Valladolid, known for its charming streets and sun-splashed walls. After a short orientation tour, there’s time to explore on your own. Next, visit the enormous and elaborate pyramid inside the Mayan site of EK’ BALAM. Meaning “Black Jaguar,” Ek’ Balam was at the height of its importance as a Mayan city during the Late Classic Period (600-900 AD). When the Mayans abandoned the site, it went undercover as the dense low-lying jungle of the Yucatan engulfed it. Found by archaeologists and adventurers, its restoration has been ongoing since 1997. Arrive this afternoon in Uxmal. Tickets are included tonight for the exciting SOUND & LIGHT SHOW, full of magic and mystery. SPECIAL FEATURE: Your home for the next two nights is the Hacienda Uxmal. Set on lush tropical grounds and just a short walk from the Uxmal Archaeological Park, the Hacienda Uxmal has hosted royalty and celebrities, including Queen Elizabeth, Grace Kelly, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and Henry Kissinger.
Day 3 UXMAL
Today, we visit the most famous ruins of the Puuc region, UXMAL, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The existence of this city is a testament to the engineering abilities of the Maya who built reservoirs to provide water to it during the dry season. Uxmal means "thrice-built" in Mayan and during your visit you'lll learn about the Pyramid of the Magician which wa built on top of existing pyramids. Later, visit the CHOCO-STORY MUSEUM, where you’ll learn the history of coca, its importance to the Mayans, and see how chocolate was prepared using an ancestral recipe. You’ll even have the chance to make your own BEVERAGE with ingredients you choose.
Day 4 UXMAL–CAMPECHE
This morning, a unique COOKING DEMONSTRATION is in store for you. Here, you will learn the traditions still practiced in most of the rural Mayan communities. Learn about the special ingredients and spices used and how the food is prepared. Continue to the coastal town of Campeche, once a fortified pirate haven and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here, you’ll find a captivating port filled with history, baroque Spanish architecture, and natural beauty. This afternoon’s city tour includes visits to the vibrant malecón (waterfront) area, the historic fort of SAN FRANCISCO DE CAMPECHE, and the historic downtown area. Have your camera handy, as Campeche has spent the last few years restoring hundreds of downtown buildings, making it one of the most photogenic colonial cities in all of Mexico. This evening is at leisure. Your Tour Director will have suggestions for shopping, dining, and additional sightseeing.
Day 5 CAMPECHE–BÉCAL–MÉRIDA
Our first stop today is the village of Bécal. For more than a century, the skilled hat weavers of Bécal have been weaving Panama Hats using ancient Mayan techniques. We’ll visit a local HAT MAKER to learn about the history and the hat-making process. Later, journey to Mérida, capital of the Yucatán state and its colonial heart. Visit the MUSEUM OF ANTHROPOLOGY, home to a collection of exclusive artifacts from the Maya civilization to present day. Your hotel this evening is a former colonial mansion that is within walking distance of shopping and the historic city center.
Day 6 MÉRIDA–CHICHEN ITZA
This morning, enjoy a city tour including the cathedral, Governor’s Palace, and the tree-lined streets of Paseo de Montejo. On to Chichén Itzá, where the renowned Hotel Mayaland is your home for the next two nights. You may wish to take a dip in the pool, stroll through the beautiful gardens, or just enjoy a cool drink. After dinner this evening, you are invited to attend the SOUND & LIGHT SHOW. SPECIAL FEATURE: Located in the heart of Chichén Itzá Archaeology Park, the Hotel Mayaland is set on 100 acres of tropical gardens and maintains its own private entrance to the park. Built in 1923, it’s the world’s oldest hotel inside an archaeological site, and has been named a “must see” by Condé Nast Traveler.
Day 7 CHICHEN ITZA
Start the day with a visit to CHICHÉN ITZÁ, built by the Maya between 600 and 900 AD. It was abandoned by the end of the 10th century and re-established in the 11th and 12th centuries, possibly by the Toltecs. Visit the BALL COURT, site of sacrifices; EL CASTILLO, a formidable building dedicated to the high priest; and the CENOTE SAGRADO, the sacred well once filled with priceless treasure offered to the gods. This evening, your Tour Director hosts a festive farewell dinner. The perfect ending to your time in the Yucatán.
Day 8 CHICHEN ITZA–CANCUN
After breakfast this morning, return to Cancun and check in to the Westin Resort & Spa for the next three nights.
Days 9-10 CANCUN
Spend two full days in Cancun, with a multitude of activities to enjoy. During your time here, you may want to swim with the dolphins, take a ferry to Cozumel, visit the nearby ruins of Tulum, relax on a dinner cruise to Isla Mujeres, enjoy a massage or facial at the spa, shop for souvenirs, or simply relax by the pool.
Day 11 CANCUN
The tour ends after breakfast with guests departing on individual schedules.