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8696
Mexico

Christmas and New Year's in Oaxaca and Puebla

Leave the snowmen behind as you experience an authentic Mexican Christmas and ring in the New Year Oaxaca-style! See ancient rituals and visit well-known archaeological sites.
Rating (4.18)
Program No. 8696RJ
Length
15 days
Starts at
2,999
Mexico

Christmas and New Year's in Oaxaca and Puebla

Leave the snowmen behind as you experience an authentic Mexican Christmas and ring in the New Year Oaxaca-style! See ancient rituals and visit well-known archaeological sites.
Length
15 days
Starts at
2,999
Length
15 days
Rating (4.18)
Starts at
2,999
Program No. 8696RJ

Your well-being is our #1 priority

To make your experience as safe as possible, we require all participants to be fully vaccinated. See our Safety Roadmap

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DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Dec 20 - Jan 3, 2023
Starting at
2,999
Dec 21 - Jan 4, 2023
Starting at
2,999
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Dec 20 - Jan 3, 2023
Starting at
3,599
Dec 21 - Jan 4, 2023
Starting at
3,599

At a Glance

Revel in the long history and rich cultural heritage of Oaxaca during the region’s fascinating cycle of holiday ceremonies. With roots based in prehistoric rituals, discover a full display of seasonal festivities in Oaxaca, Puebla and Mexico City as they build through colorful events and commemorations and culminate in the extravagant pageant of Christmas and a festive dinner to ring in the New Year.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles daily over varied terrain. Elevations up to 7,200 feet.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Participate in local Christmas Pageants.
  • Make piñatas and bring them to children at a convent.
  • Observe the legendary craftspeople of Oaxaca at work in local shops and markets.

General Notes

Please note schedule varies to allow for holiday-related activities.
Featured Expert
All Experts
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María Teresa Peniche
Maria Teresa Peniche, who prefers to be known simply as “Teri,” is a highly regarded addition to Geronimo’s Road Scholar staff. Teri pursued a career in higher education, preparing school curriculums designed as well as teaching English in secondary education. After retiring, Teri’s vast knowledge of Mexico’s history and culture paved the way towards her becoming a Group Leader. Blessed with a caring disposition and a great desire to share her love of her country, Teri’s capacity for sharing her considerable knowledge is unrivaled.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of María Peniche
María Teresa Peniche View biography
Maria Teresa Peniche, who prefers to be known simply as “Teri,” is a highly regarded addition to Geronimo’s Road Scholar staff. Teri pursued a career in higher education, preparing school curriculums designed as well as teaching English in secondary education. After retiring, Teri’s vast knowledge of Mexico’s history and culture paved the way towards her becoming a Group Leader. Blessed with a caring disposition and a great desire to share her love of her country, Teri’s capacity for sharing her considerable knowledge is unrivaled.
Profile Image of Arturo Vertiz
Arturo Vertiz View biography
Arturo Vertiz knew from an early age that he wanted to work in the travel industry, focusing on learning English and French in school. Graduating with a degree in tourism and business administration, he worked in the hotel industry before founding his own travel agency. Arturo’s greatest honor was being chosen to manage the housing complex for athletes participating in the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara. As a Group Leader and a Mexican national, Arturo loves interacting with visitors in search of learning experiences.
Profile Image of Suzanne Barbezat
Suzanne Barbezat View biography
Suzanne Barbezat grew up in Montréal, Canada, but holds a deep love and appreciation for Oaxaca. After graduating with a degree in anthropology, she lost her heart to Oaxaca on a solo trip through Latin America. Moving to Mexico in 1998, she has worked as a teacher, group leader and writer Suzanne spends her free time discovering off-the-beaten-path locales around Oaxaca with her Mexican husband and children. There's nothing she enjoys more than getting to know Oaxaca better and sharing her love for it.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
The Course of Mexican History
by Meyer, Michael C. and William L. Sherman
Mexico: From the Olmecs to the Aztecs
by Coe, Michael
Letters from Mexico
by Cortés, Hernan & Anthony Pagden
Christmas in Mexico
by NTC Publishing Group
Distant Neighbors: A Portrait of the Mexicans
by Riding, Alan
Two Holiday Folktales from Mexico
by Ramirez, Anthony
Conquest: Montezuma, Cortéz and the Fall of Old Mexico
by Thomas, Hugh
El Regalo de la Flor de Nochebuena/The Gift of the Poinsettia
by Mora, Pat
12 Reviews
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4.18 Average
(5)

So grateful for the opportunity to explore Oaxaca, Puebla and Mexico City despite some of the uncertainties of and cancellations due to COVID. All of our tour personnel were friendly and professional and constantly tried to please when changes had to occur due to health or political issues. I empathized with them having to deal with so many frustrations that were well beyond their control. Despite some inconveniences, we had plenty of time to learn about the culture, the arts/crafts, the history and the economy with hands-on experiences, especially in and around Oaxaca, as well as through interesting lectures. I so enjoyed some of the food and restaurants - some catering especially to our group. The pace of the tour was accurately described and yet there was also some built-in free time to do as we pleased. My biggest take-away was how the Mexico I experienced is so very different than the perceptions I had previous to my visit. I intend to go back and visit again as a result. Special kudos to Arturo and Roberto who kept us organized, answered so many questions and even entertained us with song and dance.

(1)

This trip had too many participants (RS (over)booked 31; 3 had flight troubles, so 28); had a mediocre tour guide the whole time; involved many hours in a jumbo bus, often ending in "shopping opportunities"; one awful lecturer (two in total; one fine, the other awful); terrible hotel in Mexico City and dysfunctional hotel in Puebla; the list goes on. The tour guide paid attention to archeology, but nothing about flora and fauna, nothing about geology, nothing about geography, nothing about local economies, etc. (And, during one long bus ride amid very interesting plants and hills, a movie was played to "entertain" us, and there were no headphones so we were forced to listen to it; the plants and hills were ignorable?) At times, this felt like a "package tour", not a Road Scholar tour. A bright spot was the leader (Maria Teresa) and her colleague (Beatriz). All in all, Road Scholar can do much better.

(1)

Because Road Scholar erroneously canceled air reservations for me and Christopher--that's what they told us at the airport--we had to stay over an extra day. The extra expense incurred: $85 - hotel $45 - second COVID-free certification $30 - extra cab trips from/to airport Total owed me: $160.00 Dianne Farrell 4591 SW Hollyhock Circle Corvallis, OR 97333

(5)

My first trip with Road Scholar and to Mexico. Not the type of person to sit & listen to lectures but was pleasantly surprised. Lectures were short, interesting & informative. I enjoyed the topics of discussion on culture, arts, politics and history of Mexico. Now inspired to learn & to see more of Mexico.

This reviewer did not give a star rating.

This program was very enjoyable, interesting and educational. Paco, the local guide, was exceptional. Our two group leaders worked hard at the administrative end of the program, but lacked in the ability to create group cohesion. They needed to have a system of seat rotation on buses. They needed to rein in one pax member who tended to dominate with questions. The other improvement that needs attention is that most meals seemed to be Luke warm. The hotels were very good, the dedicated bus was first class with an excellent driver. Overall, it is a program that has a lot of merit.

(5)

Our Program to Oaxaca was fun, interesting and exciting. Loved every minute of it. The celebrations on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve were awesome and very special. Our program directors,guides and lecturers were exceptional. Truly a remarkable adventure in Mexico!

(5)

An exceptional experience: * the guides are superb - very attentive to individual needs. I will register for other programs lead by this team. * the itinerary is well designed * the group was very supportive One suggestion for future programs: Participants should be made more aware of the altitude and the potential for a significantly reduced ability to participate in the walking. There is a lot of walking on uneven pavement and trails. This is a challenge for some participants. It is even more risky when one is struggling for O@. One participant needed to leave the program early. She had been using an intubator before she arrived for the program and during the program. She tried very hard but she could not get sufficient O2 at the elevation of the cities we visited. This registration should never have been permitted.

(4)

Christmas in Oaxaca is a delightful trip to take if you don't want to spend the holidays at home. If you are interested in folk art this is a must-do trip. Be prepared to explore plenty of pre-Columbian cultures and eat a lot of good food!

(5)

In my participant survey I neglected to mention, and was not asked, about two other members of the Geronimo group who were instrumental in making the trip a success. Paco, the native speaker , was very knowledgeable and friendly. He did most of the talking and explaining, and was extremely forthcoming and available. Beatrice was Terry's helper and was always available to answer questions and tell us what to do and where to go. Both deserve recognition for a job well done!

(5)

I enjoyed the program and experiencing interesting places.

(5)

Oaxaca was a great place to celebrate the holidays. Many parades, festivities, good natured crowds and great archaeological sites, churches and museums to visit.Also highly rated city by a travel magazine.

(5)

I have traveled extensively and found this trip to be among the best I've ever done. We dove head first into extraordinary Mexican culture and history, participating in many of the events, instead of just watching. Don't miss this trip!






Important registration tip:
If you want to attend the live lecture, please do not wait until the last minute to enroll.
If you enroll after a lecture is complete, we’ll send you a recording of the event.