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Yucatan Highlights

Tour Length
6 days
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Overview Reviews
6 days
1 World Heritage Site visited.
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Tour Map

You will visit: Mexico City, Merida, Chichen Itza, Cancun & Playa del Carmen

Viva Mexico! This place truly has it all! Crammed full of rich cultural tradition and diverse geography, there is something for everyone - from the hot beach playground of Cancun to the jungles of the Yucatan and from the World Heritage Site of Chichen Itza to the thriving metropolis of Mexico City. At every turn, there is so much to see and do! Immerse yourself in adventure activities, water sports, cultural sites, an unbelievable variety of food, and a sizzling nightlife! Mexico turns up the heat!

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Itinerary + Backstage Pass & ME Time Optionals

ME Time Optionals

ME Time optionals will take your trip to a whole new level with unforgettable experiences unique to the places you visit. See more, do more, live more & go home completely regret-free. Costs for these aren’t included in your tour cost & are payable to your Tour Manager in local currency.

Backstage Pass

Your Backstage Pass gives you incredible exclusive experiences you’ll only get with Contiki. From food to accommodation to exclusive access to the best sights, your Backstage Pass gives you unbeatable value & a completely unique travel experience.

1 Arrive Mexico City

This morning meet your Tour Manager and fellow travellers as we turn back the clock this morning with a trip to Teotihuacan, the largest archaeological city ever to exist on the American continents. Climb the impressive pyramids and imagine how this was once central America’s greatest city. Our Local Guide will fill you in on the Teotihuacanos beliefs and rites as you walk around the site and see the Sun and Moon Temples.

This afternoon, discover another side of vibrant Mexico City with a visit to the easy-going, old barrio (neighborhood) of Coyoacan. Take in the old colonial mansions, fountains and quiet squares of this cultural quarter. See the paired studios of artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera and maybe visit Frida Kahlo’s famous Blue House, which is filled with colorful art, pre-Hispanic artifacts and a beautiful garden.

In your free time, live a slice of the local lifestyle and head to the Coyoacan Markets – the buzzing food stalls are perfect for trying authentic Mexican food, like a torta (Mexican sandwich), enchiladas and tacos.

Shopping-wise, this town has it all, from big brands to bargains. Get some tips from your Tour Manager before you splurge. Rummage through the colorful La Merced, the largest market in the city. See piles of dried chillies, tropical fruits and other vibrant food displays as well as local crafts.

Otherwise, walk the streets and get a feel for the city’s bustling street life, where cafes spill out onto the pavements, pushcart kitchens cook up fantastic food and sidewalk vendors sell anything from t-shirts to jewelery.

Take a break and taste Mexican coffee in a traditional coffeehouse or sip on some tropical juice at a jugeria (juice bar). If you’re hungry, try a rosticeria for some crispy roast chicken Mexican style or a hole-in-the-wall taqueria for a burrito.

For something different, find out if there is lucha libre (Mexican masked wrestling) on while you’re in town and go check out a match.
For a dose of culture, walk through Mexican history with a visit to the famous Museo Nacional de Antropologia (Museum of Anthropology). It has an incredible collection of artifacts, starting from pre-historic times. The museum grounds are also great for taking a break from the buzzing down town area, so hang out in the gardens, read beside the lake or check out the zoo.

Hotel Dinner

  • Visit the ancient Aztec city Teotihuacan
  • City Sightseeing including the National Palace, the Zocalo & Chapultepec Park
2 Mexico City to Merida

Today, it’s a total change of scene when we leave behind Mexico City and fly to the beautiful white-stone city of Merida. Laid-back and pretty, it’s perfect for a wind down after the hectic hum of the capital.

Get a real feel for this small, stylish town on our walking tour through the center as your Tour Manager gives you the story behind the haciendas, palaces and gorgeous buildings.

There’s also a chance to ride through town old-style on our optional horse & carriage ride. The local driver will show off Merida’s core spots as you sit back and soak up the atmosphere.

Use your free time to explore the buzzing market district, where you can pick up handicrafts, hammocks and traditional travel treasures like ponchos and sombreros.

Hotel Breakfast, Dinner

  • Relax & take in the sights on a horsedrawn carriage ride in Merida
3 Merida to Cancun via Chichen Itza

We kick start the day with a trip to UNESCO World Heritage-listed Chichen Itza – the best preserved and most famous ruins in Mexico. Hear from our expert Local Guide about the time temples and how the Mayan calendar worked as you explore the spectacular ancient ceremonial center and the fascinating snail-shaped observatory.

Back on the coach, we continue on to glitzy Cancun, Mexico’s super resort. This party paradise is a high energy destination, loaded with outdoor activities and a buzzing nightlife.

Use your free time to relax with an evening siesta. Then head into town to the Mercado 28, a lively market serving up homemade foods. Sit yourself down in a fondita (little café) and order various specialties from throughout Mexico or try the regional Yucatan dish, chicken pibil (chicken in a special marinade).

For some live, local music, make a move to Parquet de las Palapas with some friends. Grab a cold cerveza (beer) from one of the food stands and take it all in. Then explore what’s on offer party-wise in Cancun.

Hotel Breakfast

  • Turn back the clock at the ancient ruins of Chichen Itza
4 Cancun & Play del Carmen

Take a trip with the group to the hip, hot beach of Playa del Carmen. A popular spot for snorkeling and diving, Playa del Carmen has underwater caves and mind-blowing offshore coral reefs. Take a swim in the azure waters, chill out on the beach or even jump on a ferry to the Island of Cozumel.

Back in Cancun, wrap up the day on the beach watching the sun set over the Caribbean Sea. Some ideas for dinner include hitting an open-air restaurant for some fresh seafood or heading to the central plaza for some authentic island specialties.

Hotel Breakfast

  • Relax on the white sand beaches
5 Cancun

Today, your Tour Manager will take you to hidden spots and show off tropical jungle and watering holes. Then with a full free day, make the most of Cancun’s action and crystal clear waters.

We get away from it all and head to the pint-sized Isla Mujeres. With no cars and little development, this is the place to wind down on pristine beaches and soak up the sun. Experience its fabulous coral reefs on our optional Garrafon Natural Reef Park excursion. If you’re keen, you can even swim with dolphins here.

You could head to Punta Nizuc for some more snorkeling. For something different have a look through La Casa des Artes Mexicanas (House of Mexican Art), where you’ll see musical instruments, handmade kids’ toys and traditional costumes.

Opt for a trip to Xcaret Ecopark, where Mayan ruins, a stunning inlet and jungle combine to make this place so special. Have a swim in the underground river and see colorful birdlife and a butterfly farm.

Make your last night on tour one to remember with the group. Get into the fun, festive vibes of Cancun and settle in on an open terrace beachside or at a small, local bar. Keep it moving until the sun comes up if you want – Cancun nightlife is the stuff of legends.

Hotel Breakfast, Dinner

  • Experience the legendary nightlife
  • Jungle Maya Expedition & Zipline
    USD $100.00
  • Maya Encounter
    USD $120.00
  • Xcaret Ecological Park
    USD $145.00
6 Depart Cancun

The tour ends after breakfast and it’s time to say farewell to your new friends.

Breakfast

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Backstage Pass

Our backstage pass includes all of this and more, and it's free as part of your trip.

Exclusive Inclusions

  • Visit the ancient Aztec city Teotihuacan
  • City Sightseeing including the National Palace, the Zocalo & Chapultepec Park
See More

Me Time

  • Jungle Maya Expedition & Zipline
  • Maya Encounter
See More

On a budget?

  • The average cost per day for this tour is n/a
  • You only need a US$200 deposit to book and pay in full 45 days before you travel.
  • Pay in installments, with Contiki Layaway

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