Mexico·February 6 - 12 2025

Vibrant Oaxaca: Culture and Gastronomy

Oaxaca is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful, historic and gourmet havens in all of Mexico.

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Overview

Come with us to Oaxaca and savor the sensory delights from artisanal crafts to hand-crafted mezcal to the best and most distinctive food in the country. This is the land of blue tortillas and the seven moles of barbacoa. When you get to know this town, you won't want to leave! It was voted the #1 best destination by Travel & Leisure two years in a row. In this historic city, we'll dine at high-end restaurants and off-the-beaten-track street stands, delighting in regional specialties with contemporary interpretations that fuse pre-Hispanic influences with modern ingredients. Nothing is more nuanced than Mezcal. Made from dozens of different agave species and 52 sub-species, Mezcal is emblematic of Oaxaca’s diversity. (Mezcal’s cousin, tequila, is made from a single Agave species – Weber blue). Mezcal is at the heart and soul of Oaxaca and is to be sipped and enjoyed with friends. We'll indulge in a traditional Temazcal ritual and massage, an must-do experience that dates back to ancient times. It is essentially a steam bath in a clay hut of medicinal and aromatic herbs used in traditional medicine and day-to-day central Mexican lives. The weather at this time is perfect, reaching highs in the 70s during the day and lows at night in the 50s.

Highlights

Mezcal  distillery tour and tasting

Mezcal distillery tour and tasting

Take a cooking class with our own chef/guide using market fresh ingredients

Take a cooking class with our own chef/guide using market fresh ingredients

Visit Monte Albán, the ancient Zapotec metropolis dating back to 500 BC

Visit Monte Albán, the ancient Zapotec metropolis dating back to 500 BC

Shop ‘til you drop for the most beautiful pottery & textiles you’ve ever seen

Shop ‘til you drop for the most beautiful pottery & textiles you’ve ever seen

Take the ultimate walking and tasting tour, exploring the full range of Oaxacan cuisine.

Take the ultimate walking and tasting tour, exploring the full range of Oaxacan cuisine.

Discover Teotitlán del Valle, the rug weavers' headquarters for 1000’s of years

Discover Teotitlán del Valle, the rug weavers' headquarters for 1000’s of years

Cleanse and detox your body at a traditional ceremonial temazcal, dating back 1000’s of years

Cleanse and detox your body at a traditional ceremonial temazcal, dating back 1000’s of years

Visit the Ethnobotanical Garden and explore the rich biodiversity and cultural heritage of Oaxaca

Visit the Ethnobotanical Garden and explore the rich biodiversity and cultural heritage of Oaxaca

Itinerary

Here's a day-by-day itinerary of the trip

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Day 1: Thursday, February 6th, 2025

Upon arrival in Oaxaca, you will be met by our driver at the airport and transferred to your home for the next six nights - the Grand Fiesta Americana Hotel in the heart of the historic center. After settling into your accommodations, take a moment to relax and rejuvenate before embarking on our evening adventures.

This evening, we'll gather in the hotel's lounge for a special welcome drink of Mezcal, a traditional Mexican spirit derived from the agave plant. Savor the complex flavors of this iconic beverage while immersing yourself in the lively atmosphere of Oaxaca.

Following drinks, we'll take a leisurely walk from the hotel to Casa Oaxaca, a renowned restaurant nestled in the charming streets of the historic center. Along the way, soak in the sights and sounds of the bustling city adorned with colorful Spanish Colonial architecture and vibrant culture.

Be ready to indulge in a culinary journey through Oaxacan cuisine. From rich moles to homemade tortillas, the restaurant offers a delightful array of modernized traditional dishes crafted by Chef Ruiz with locally sourced ingredients.

After a satisfying dinner, we'll walk back to our hotel while taking in the view of the illuminated and lively streets of Oaxaca.

Included

Dinner

Welcome Drink

Airport transportation

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Day 2: Friday, February 7th, 2025

Kickstart your day with a hearty breakfast, setting the tone for an adventure-filled exploration of Oaxaca's cultural treasures. As the morning unfolds, we'll take a Historical Walking Tour guided by our favorite local expert. 

After the tour, we'll savor a delicious seafood focused lunch at Humar in centro. After lunch we will take a leisurely walk to the Museum of Cultures of Oaxaca which is in the former convent of the Santo Domingo Church. 

Continuing our cultural odyssey, we'll visit several places where Oaxacan pottery is sold, the handmade pieces use traditional techniques. Pottery made in Oaxaca ranges from rustic red clay pieces to the famous polished black clay pots which you'll discover later in the week to colorful contemporary ware. You'll be captivated by the rich cultural heritage embedded in the work.

With the day's adventures winding down, we can enjoy some well-deserved downtime. Whether unwinding in the hotel's comforts or exploring more of Oaxaca's charm, the choice is yours. 

Get ready for an unforgettable dining experience tonight at Los Danzantes. The restaurant's creative and authentic cuisine promises the perfect way to end a day filled with adventure and exploration.

Included

All meals

Museum visits

Walking tour

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Day 3: Saturday, February 8th, 2025

Start your day by enjoying a delicious breakfast, then prepare to discover new tastes! 

Today, we will be going on a Mezcal Tour. Are you ready to experience this adventure? Mezcal and its value is revealed within each step of its artisanal production process, from the agave fields to distillation in copper or clay. This pure tradition is cherished by all "in the know" and can be appreciated even more as we learn more about it. There is little to know machinery used to make Oaxaca's most illustrious product. 

After the tour, we'll satisfy our appetites with lunch at Casa Tierra. This restaurant is located in Tlacolula de Matamoros and serves homemade local food in a charming setting. 

Reinvigorated by our culinary indulgence, we'll return to the hotel to freshen up for the afternoon's explorations. Then, we'll set out for a guided visit to the Oaxaca Ethnobotanical Garden*. Amidst the lush greenery and vibrant blooms, we can explore Oaxaca's botanical heritage and learn about the traditional uses of local plants and herbs.

As the sun begins its descent, we'll stroll back to the hotel. With the evening ahead, you have the freedom to enjoy a dinner of your choosing, whether it be indulging in street food or dining at a local favorite with your new friends.

*Based on garden guide availability

Included

B-L

Guided Botanical Garden Tour

Mezcal Tour

Not Included

Dinner

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Day 4: Sunday, February 9th, 2025

Today, we’ll have a proper Mexican breakfast at Fonda Florecita, in a small market nearby. Try the delicious hot chocolate. If you're adventurous, give the chapulinas (grasshoppers) a try. They're good and add protein to your morning tortilla. 

After breakfast, we’ll head to the Noma Collective - Vida Nueva Women’s Weaving Cooperative Mexico, where we can find the rich tradition of Oaxacan weaving produced by the skill and artistry of local women artisans in a town that has made rugs for nearly 1000 years. Then we'll explore pottery places nearby for an immersion into the region's vibrant artisanal culture.

As midday approaches, we'll embark on a journey to discover Oaxaca's culinary treasures. Are you ready to try mouthwatering dishes and local delicacies? Omar from Oaxacking will take is on a gastronomic journey through Oaxaca's food scene. Omar has appeared on numerous television shows and has been guiding us on our culinary exploits in Oaxaca for years now. This afternoon's food tour will act as your dinner tonight because its very filling. 

Late this afternoon you will have some free time to explore the vibrant streets of Oaxaca, discovering hidden gems before the stores close. Feel free to enjoy a digestif by the dipping pool at the hotel before heading off to bed. 


Included

Women's Weaving Collective

Appetizers and Cocktails

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Food Tour

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Day 5: Monday, February 10th, 2025

Today, we will explore in-depth the diverse and flavorful cuisine of Oaxaca, highlighting its traditional ingredients and recipes with a cooking class. The state of Oaxaca is known for its rich heritage due to its large indigenous population and is considered a food mecca. 

After breakfast, we’ll drive to the home of our chef and cooking instructor. She and her son have created a gorgeous outdoor covered kitchen. We'll make our own homemade tortillas, memelitas, and so much more. After the hard work, we’ll enjoy the fruits of our labors.  

After lunch we'll head back to our hotel to relax!

Get ready for a transformative experience with a traditional Temazcal Ritual and massage, a journey of purification and healing guided by ancient practices.

For dinner, we'll head to Tierra del Sol, an invitation to 
a culinary journey celebrating Oaxacan cuisines' five pillars: maize, quelites, frijoles, chiles, and cacao. 

Included

Temazcal ceremony

Cooking class

All meals

Massage

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Day 6: Tuesday , February 11th, 2025

Start with a delicious breakfast and prepare for a day full of adventure and cultural immersion.  

We'll begin with a visit to the largest and most important archaeological site of Oaxaca, Monte Albán. A local expert guide will explain the legacy and history of this 2500 year old Zapotec site. 

Monte Albán is elevated to 6,400 ft above mean sea level and rises some 1,300 ft from the valley floor. Getting there involves some uphill hiking and uneven terrain, so wear sturdy, comfortable walking shoes. 

Despite the physical activity required, the stunning panoramic views and historical significance of this ancient Zapotec city make it well worth the effort. 

Next, we'll visit the Black Pottery town, a charming village known for its unique black pottery pieces. Here, you can watch the skilled crafters at work and buy a one-of-a-kind piece to take home. 

Next we'll head to San Martin Tilcajete for more activities and adventures. The afternoon will start with mouth-watering street food as we enjoy the Festival in San Martin Tilcajete. As we drive to the festival, we'll stop along the way to visit the famed El Árbol del Tule, a massive Montezuma cypress tree revered for its age and size.

A visit to David Hernandez's Workshop is a must. Here, we will discover how to create alebrijes as well as an opportunity to buy a piece. 

As the light begins to dim we'll head back to Oaxaca City, where you'll have time to relax before we meet for a farewell dinner at Levadura de Olla, a restaurant headed up by a young female chef that serves traditional Oaxacan cuisine with a modern twist. 

Included

Guided tour of Monte Alban

Alebrijes workshop

All meals

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Day 7: Wednesday, February 12th, 2025

After a week of exploring and eating your way through Oaxaca, it's time to head home with a head full of memories and a couple of bottles of mezcal. 

Our driver will pick you up from the hotel and take you to the airport. You may depart early or enjoy breakfast at the hotel beforehand.


Included

Breakfast

Not Included

Departure airport transportation

You'll Be Staying Here

Grand Fiesta Americana Oxaca

Grand Fiesta Americana Oxaca

Grand Fiesta Americana Oxaca is a unique experience that will captivate you. Be impressed by the architectural wonders of a hotel where tradition and modernity merge, creating an atmosphere of luxury and exclusivity.  

Hosts

Leticia Martinez

Leticia Martinez

A tour guide and artist, specializing in the Day of the Day crowns, Leticia, who hails from Mexico, is the ideal guide for your Oaxaca tour. Leticia Martinez is a multilingual travel director and artist. She provides unique tour experiences influenced by her passion for art and culture. She is fluent in Spanish, Italian and Portuguese. Leticia’s approach to providing a unique cultural and immersive travel experience is inspired by the gastronomy of Oaxacan cuisine and the cultural celebration of Dia de Los Muertos. Her Mexican ancestral roots inspired her to develop her brand “Leticia M Studio,” which provides signature floral head crown collections featured on superstars like Beyonce, magazine covers, and fashion runways, marrying her life's passions, travel and design.

LETICIAMSTUDIO

Price

Private Room

Private Room

Everyone gets their own fabulous room!

FROM$6,995

Shared Room

Shared Room

Share a room with a friend or family member

FROM$5,995

"The spirit of Oaxaca. Soaked in tradition"

Oaxaca

300 miles southeast of Mexico City lies the enchanting city of Oaxaca (pronounced “wa-ha-ka”). Nestled in a verdant valley with panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, this area has been prized since 500 BC. To this day, the state of Oaxaca (of which Oaxaca city is the capital) is the most ethnically diverse Mexican state, home to 16 of the country’s 56 indigenous groups. Oaxaca’s ethnic diversity is the foundation of the rich culinary and cultural traditions you find here. Oaxaca must be taken in slowly and attentively to understand its many layers. 

Oaxaca

What's Included

What's Included

2 glasses of beer, wine or mezcal (when specified) at dinner

Entrances to museums, Monte Alban as well as costs of all activities mentioned

All in country transportation

All meals unless stated otherwise

Mezcal Tour and Tasting

Alebrijes Workshop Demonstration

Historical Walking Tour

Guided Tour of the Botanical Gardens

Traditional Oaxacan Cooking Class

Temazcal Experience & Massage

arrival airport transportation

International airfare

Souvenirs

Travel and medical insurance (required)

departure airport transportation

Reviews

"I am still on a natural high after spending a week with Doni and GG2W in Oaxaca, This trip fed my soul from the wonderful, supportive, smart, funny cultured women I had the privilege to travel with, to the incredible culture of the Oaxacan people which the average American is sadly ignorant of. The people, the food, the art, the history , and the architecture are incredible. Doni could not have planned an itinerary that ticked all the boxes for me more than this trip. Although we were tourists we were so immersed in the culture that we felt a part of it rather than on the outside looking in. It was truly an inspirational trip for me and at the risk of sounding over dramatic I will say it was life changing. I am encouraging all of my friends to go alone and I plan on going again alone. I never thought travelling with people I didn't know could be so amazing. It was!!! Finally, I have used all of my superlatives already but must say that Doni is one of a kind. We could not have felt more comfortable, cared for and heard than we did. Looking for my next trip already!"

Amy C, Feb 2022, DE, USA on Trip Advisor

"Leticia our tour guide was wonderful. Loved the Nelson Perez Studio and Fabian Black Pottery factory. Liked the mezcal tour and the guide, but I don't drink alcohol. Enjoyed the cooking class."

Lynn C, Feb 2024, NY, USA, 2024 Trip Guest

"I loved the tour, the caring and knowledgeable host, and one of the best groups of women I have traveled with. On our free night ALL of us went to dinner together. In addition, Leticia was a fabulous host. What a caring and interesting woman, and her love of Mexico is deep."

Melinda G, Feb 2024, TX, USA, 2024 Trip Guest

FAQs

You should fly into Oaxaca International airport.

On a typical February day, the average temperature in Oaxaca ranges from a high of 78°F (25°C) and a low of 49°F (9°C). 

We will have a zoom call about six weeks before the trip starts to discuss all that information and give you a packing list. Here is a great website we love that will help you with packing and travel trips. 

The trip officially starts on the afternoon of February 6th, but consider arriving a day early so you have time to relax before all the festivities start.  If you do decide to arrive early, please let us know and we will book your room for you and make sure that you stay in the same room when the trip starts.

Inquire about this trip

Vibrant Oaxaca: Culture and Gastronomy

Mexico· February 6 - 12 2025· 6 nights

FROM$6,995/pp