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Exploring San Miguel de Allende

Program Number: 17262RJ
Start and End Dates:
11/14/2014 - 11/21/2014; 2/19/2015 - 2/26/2015; 3/19/2015 - 3/26/2015; 11/13/2015 - 11/20/2015;
Duration: 7 nights
Location: Mexico
Price starting at: $1,682.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type:
Meals: 16; 7 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

Considered a national monument in Mexico, San Miguel de Allende is a nostalgic, uncommonly beautiful throwback to the Mexico of a more romantic era. Originally called San Miguel el Grande and founded by a 16th-century Spanish friar, the city’s magnificent colonial buildings, combining baroque and neoclassical elements, offer clear examples of an eclectic mix of architectural styles that has evolved over five centuries. Get to the heart of this handsome, tranquil city, savoring its thermal waters, varied architecture, meandering cobblestone streets, and deep-set traditions and culture.




Highlights

• Meet local people and observe handcraft at a pottery factory and other centers of regional commerce.
• Visit Charco del Ingenio Ecological Park to learn from staff of efforts to protect it from encroaching urban sprawl.
• Understand local art, architecture and ways of life as expressions of the culture and history of the region in which the Mexican War of Independence began.



Activity Particulars

Extensive walking on uneven terrain, narrow cobblestone streets, steps.



Itinerary Summary

Arrival Leon, coach to San Miguel de Allende, 6 nights; coach Guanajuato, 1 night; coach to Leon for departure.



Flight from the U.S.A.
Arrival Leon
Coach to San Miguel de Allende
6 nights
Coach to Guanajuato
1 night
Coach to Leon for departure

Upon arrival, begin by admiring the great architecture of San Miguel de Allende’s buildings, cobblestone streets and narrow alleys, learning the history of the town and discussing its most important events. Throughout the week, attend lectures and embark on walking excursions through the city as, inspired by art, architecture and local culture, you assemble a portrait in the mind’s eye of the city’s storied past beginning in colonial times. Also pay visits to the historic cities of Dolores Hidalgo and Guanajuato, listen to the music of local entertainers and take time to relax in a thermal spring.




Mexico

The oldest of the land’s found by Europeans in the New World, Mexico has endured a rough history at the hands of Cortes and subsequent invaders. Despite a turbulent past, the country maintains its relaxed and inviting charm with a mix of modern and traditional from its industrious cities to its captivating wildernesses.



Accommodations
Hotel located in picturesque and historic San Miguel de Allende, only seven blocks from downtown.
Meals and Lodgings
   Posada de La Aldea
  San Miguel de Allende, Gto., Mexico 6 nights
   Hotel Mexico Plaza
  Guanjuato, Gto, Mexico 1 night
 Posada de La Aldea
Type: Hotel
  Description: Hotel Posada de la Aldea is located in the picturesque and historic city of San Miguel de Allende.
  Contact info: Calle Ancha de San Antonio #11 Zona Centro
San Miguel de Allende,  37700 Mexico
phone: +011+52 -415-152-1022
web: www.naftaconnect.com/hotellaaldea
  Room amenities: Private baths, cable TV , phone
  Facility amenities: Gardens, pool, conference room, lounge
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Check in time: 3:00 PM

 Hotel Mexico Plaza
Type: Hotel
  Description: This quaint hotel set on a hill top overlooking down town Guanjuato and is within walking distance of the City.
  Contact info: Carretera Panoramica San Javier
Guanjuato, Gto,  36020 Mexico
phone: +011-52-473-102-3000
web: www.mexicoplaza.com.mx
  Room amenities: Cable TV; Frigo Bar, Coffee Maker and Micro; In room Telephone
  Facility amenities: Spa and Gym; AC; 24-Hr. Security. Restaurant and Bar plus meeting facilities on property.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: $130-$150 Participants must make own reservations for additional night lodging
  Check out time: 12:00 PM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
7 p.m. Welcome Dinner You will be staying at Posada de La Aldea that night.
  End of Program:
Immediately following 8 a.m. breakfast You will be staying at Hotel Mexico Plaza the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. In order to enter Mexico as a US Citizen you need to have one tourist migratory form (FM-T) per person. (Cost of FM-T is included in airfare). These forms are obtained at the first port of entry, at the borders, or at Mexican consulates and embassies. Keep the FM-T in your possession at all times and return to authorities before leaving Mexico. A Visa is not required but a passport is needed to obtain a FM-T permit and may be required to re-enter the US. Procedures for obtaining the FM-T vary with the nationality of each visitor. Request the requirements for your nationality in any of the Mexican Consulates or Embassies in your respective countries. The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 requires that by January 8, 2007, travelers to and from the Caribbean, Bermuda, Panama, Mexico and Canada have a passport or other secure, accepted document (Merchant Mariner Document or Air NEXUS card) to enter or re-enter the United States
  Parking availability:
The hotel has parking at no cost.
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: Buses are available. Check with your travel agent for more information.
To Start of Program
  Location:  San Miguel de Allende, Gto.
  Nearest city or town:  Guanajuato
  Nearest airport:  Leon/Bajio International Airport
  Transportation to site: PROGRAM ONLY and Participants who do not participate in the Geronimo Staffed Group Transfer due to flight arrival times not permitting: Process through Immigration, Baggage Claim and Customs. Locate a porter in the airport for directions to the Taxi Stand located inside the Airport. The transfer from El Bajio Airport (Leon, Gto.) to the hotel in San Miguel de Allende is handled in three (3) travel segments. FIRST TRAVEL SEGMENT: Taxi transfer from Bajio Airport to the Guanajuato Public Bus Station. This transfer is approximately 35 minutes and costs $35.00 USD per person approx. SECOND TRAVEL SEGMENT: Public Bus transfer from Guanajuato Public Bus Station to San Miguel de Allende Public Bus Station. This transfer is approximately 1 hour 20 minutes and costs $10.00 USD per person approx. THIRD TRAVEL SEGMENT: USE ATTACHED TAXI SLIP #2 FOR THIS TRAVEL SEGMENT (found in prep mat #2 ) Taxi transfer from San Miguel de Allende Public Station to the Hotel in San Miguel de Allende. This transfer is approximately 10 minutes and costs $5.00 USD per person approx. Participants who purchased the Standard Road Scholar Program, but are unable to transfer on the Group Motorcoach due to flight arrival time, will be reimbursed bus and taxi fare by Geronimo.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Guanjuato, Gto
  Nearest city or town:  Leon
  Nearest highway: Highway 45
  Nearest airport:  Bajio International Airport
  Transportation from site: Taxi service is available from Hotel Mexico Plaza to the Airport.
Elevation Note: Elevation in San Miguel de Allende is 6,300 ft. Elevation in Guanajuato, Gto. is 6,550 ft.

The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrivals to the Hotel
(Friday, November 14)
   
 Afternoon: Arrival Bajio Airport (Leon Gto.), Motorcoach to San Miguel de Allende
 Dinner: 6:30 p.m. meet in hotel lobby for Road Scholar registration followed by Welcome Dinner at Hotel Restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Posada de La Aldea
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Orientation Lecture(s): History of San Miguel de Allende & History of Mexico Walking Excursion: Downtown San Miguel de Allende Lecture(s): History of San Miguel de Allende and History of Mexico
(Saturday, November 15)

Note: Visit Fine Arts School, Central Plaza, Parish Church of San Miguel Archangel, Plaza Civica, The Church of Our Lady of Health and the Museo Casa de Don Ignacio Allende y Unzaga (Allende's House). Biblioteca Publica (Second Largest Billingual Public Library in Mexico and a Craft's Market. This is a mile of walking w/stops at 6 sites of interest.



   
 Breakfast: Hotel Restaurant.
 Morning: Program Orientation Lecture: History of San Miguel de Allende Walking excursion : downtown San Miguel de Allende Includes Nigromante Fine Arts School, Central Plaza, Parish Church of San Miguel Archangel, Plaza Civica, Church of Our Lady of Health and Museo Casa de Don Ignacio Allende y Unzaga (Allende's House).
 Lunch: Enjoy a tasty, relaxing lunch at one of San Miguel's select restaurants.
 Afternoon: Walking excursion contines; Biblioteca Publica (Second Largest Billingual Public Library in Mexico) and visit a Craft's Market. Return to hotel
 Dinner: Free Option. From the provided restaurant directory, enjoy a dinner of your choosing.
 Evening: Free time for a relaxing evening.
   
Accommodations: Posada de La Aldea
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 3: History of Mexico lecture. Optional - Independent Morning House and Garden Tour. "Mexico's Art" presented by John Streather.
(Sunday, November 16)

Note: Optional - Independent - Morning House and Garden Tour.



   
 Breakfast: Hotel Restaurant
 Morning: Lecture: "Culture and Tradition in Mexico" Optional - Independent Morning House and Garden Tour..
 Lunch: Free Option - With more than 200 restaurants in the area, many lunch choices await you. The provided restaurant directory will make it possible to see what food service is availalbe at a glance.
 Afternoon: Lecture: "Mexico's Art" presented by John Streather. Mr. Streather is working on a book about Mexico's Art and Living in San Miguel de Allends. A British scholar, Mr. Streather is a graduate of Cambridge with degrees in Spanish and French.
 Dinner: Dinner will be served at Hotel Posada de la Aldea following the "Mexico's Art" lecture.
   
Accommodations: Posada de La Aldea
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 4: Optional - Independent Morning House and Garden Tour
(Monday, November 17)

Note: Lecture(s): Culture and Tradition in Mexico.



   
 Breakfast: Hotel Restaurant
 Morning: Lecture: History of Mexico. Excursion: Escondido Place Thermal Spring. Optional: Thermal Bath, Spa and Massage Treatment. Visit XVIII Century Church at Atotorilco.
 Lunch: Lunch will be served at a delightful restaurant outside the hub of the City.
 Afternoon: Evening Lecture: History of Mining in Mexico.
 Dinner: Free Option. This will be an opportunity to try the cuisine from San Miguel de Allende's many restaurant choices. A Restaurant Directory will be provided.
 Evening: Free
   
Accommodations: Posada de La Aldea
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5: Excursion: Escondido Place Thermal Spring Visit 18th Century Church at Atotonilco Lecture(s): "History of Mining in Mexico" and "San Miguel de Allende Style of Life"
(Tuesday, November 18)

Note: Visit Thermal Spring w/option for a Thermal Bath, Spa and Massage Treatment Two lectures will be presented today: "History of Mining in Mexico" and "San Miguel de Allende Style of Life"



   
 Breakfast: Hotel Restaurant
 Morning: Lecture: History of Mexico. Field trip: Dolores Hidalgo visit buildings of importance at this historical site.
 Lunch: Lunch will be a delicious and creative meal served in a magical setting.
 Afternoon: Return to San Miguel de Allende, enroute visit a Pottery factory. Lecture presented by a local instructor, "San Miguel de Allende Life Style"
 Dinner: Tonight's group meal will be served at one of San Miguel de Allende's local restaurants.
 Evening: No scheduled evening activities.
   
Accommodations: Posada de La Aldea
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Field trip: Charco del Ingenio Ecological Park and La Aurora Art and Design Center House.
(Wednesday, November 19)

Note: This will be a leisurely day with 2 morning field trips and an early evening lecture..



   
 Breakfast: Hotel Restaurant
 Morning: Field trip: Charco del Ingenio Ecological Park and La Aurora Art and Design Center House. Field trip: Visit and tour a local artist studio.
 Lunch: Free Option - Choose from the extensive restaurant directory. There will be no program activities until 6 p.m. so there will be time for a leisurely lunch and exploring on your own.
 Afternoon: Enjoy a free afternoon to explore on your own. Before dinner there will be a History of Mexico lecture.
 Dinner: Dinner will be served at a restaurant that is a favorite of the locals. Experience good food, friendly service and the charm of Mexico.
   
Accommodations: Posada de La Aldea
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 7: Guanajuato City Tour Farewell Dinner
(Thursday, November 20)

Note: City tour of important buildings such as: Alhondiga de Granaditas, Diego Rivera's Museum and University of Guanajuato. Walking distance of 1/2 mile but there will be a possibility of 5 stories of stairs to climb.



   
 Breakfast: Hotel Restaurant
 Morning: Depart by Motorcoach to Guanajuato. Upon arrival to Historic Guanajuato enjoy a City tour visiting important buildings i.e.: Alhondiga de Granaditas, Diego Rivera's Museum and University of Guanajuato.
 Lunch: Lunch will be a flavorful and traditional dish served by an attentive wait staff. Enjoy the City's charm at this ideal location.
 Afternoon: City tour field trip continues. This will be a chance to view the colonial area Spanish Architecture and enjoy a panoramic view of Guanajuato. The group will check into the Mexico Plaza Hotel about 4:PM. There will be time to refresh before the farewell dinner.
 Dinner: Farewell Dinner and Completion Award Ceremony. Tonight's dinner wil be festive and an opportunity to enjoy the company of new friends. Certificates of Program Completion will be awarded. A celebratory toast will be shared. The program is coming to an end, but the memories of this week will linger for a long time.
 Evening: No planned activities following dinner.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Mexico Plaza
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8:
(Friday, November 21)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast will be served at the Hotel Mexico Plaza.
 Morning: Travel Day Home Motorcoach transfer to Bajio Airport Flight Departures to USA (Home)
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


Letters from Mexico


Author: Cortas, Hernan & Anthony Pagden


Conquest: Montezuma, Cortéz and the Fall of Old Mexico


Author: Thomas, Hugh


Distant Neighbors: A Portrait of the Mexicans


Author: Riding, Alan


Mexico: Biography of Power, A History of Modern Mexico, 1810-1996


Author: Krauze, Enrique


Mexico: From the Olmecs to the Aztecs


Author: Coe, Michael


The Aztecs, Maya and their Predecessors: Archaeology of Mesoamerica


Author: Weaver, Muriel Porter


The Course of Mexican History


Author: Meyer, Michael C. and William L. Sherman


The Forging of the Cosmic Race: A Reinterpretation of Colonial Mexico


Author: MacLachlan, Colin M. and Jamie E. Rodriguez


The Wind that Swept Mexico: The History of the Mexican Revolution of 1910-1942


Author: Austin: University of Texas Press




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