During this 9 day trip to Oaxaca, learn about the local impacts of free trade agreements, globalization and immigration policies from community leaders while experiencing the Guelaguetza festival, an annual Zapotec tradition that celebrates the values of sharing, reciprocity, and community through traditional dances that display each region’s distinct cultural traditions.
We will explore Indigenous resilience through food, art, and social movements in Oaxaca — home to one of the largest and most diverse indigenous populations in Mexico. We will taste the region’s renowned gastronomic traditions rooted in farm-to-table and mezcal production; witness the preservation of pre-Columbian artifacts and practices, including a visit to the Monte Alban ruins; and partake in the Guelaguetza festival, a yearly celebration of the customs of Oaxaca’s Indigenous communities.
A note on the festival: The Guelaguetza is a tradition that has survived since pre-Columbian times, evolving with the influx of Christianity. It was created to bring the community together. A Guelaguetza might be called to help with the harvest, bring food to a family with a sick relative or to gather offering for the patron saint of the town. Today, the Guelaguetza is practiced informally in communities around the region and is hosted every year in the capital, where groups performs traditional dances and share traditional foods and handicrafts with the audience. It is one of the most acclaimed events of its kind in Mexico!
Single Room Upgrade
Available for $300 extra
One overnight stay at the Capulalpam eco cabins
Including airport pick-up and drop-off
Prep Reading materials
Two meals per day plus 3 dinners
Trip leader and translation
Preparatory reading and orientation materials
To all program activities
The trip price does NOT include international airfare and Global Exchange does not arrange air travel.
This trip is not confirmed until the minimum group size of 4 participants is met. Please do not purchase airfare until you receive confirmation from the Global Exchange coordinator.
The first and last days of the tour are dedicated primarily to arrivals and departures - please schedule your arriving and departing flights on these days. If you prefer to arrive before or depart after the listed tour dates, we can still arrange airport transportation but keep in mind there will be an extra charge, as drivers are hired per day.
Times and events subject to change
- Guelaguetza festivities, including evening processions through Oaxaca’s historic Center, the formal Guelaguetza celebration on July 22nd, and a more intimate “Guelaguetza of the people” in the community of Tlacochahuaya
- Visit a traditional Mezcal Palenque for Mezcal tasting and talk with master Mezcal producer, Eduardo Ángeles Carreño
- Meet with the Binational Indigenous Front for talk (FIOB) on Oaxacan Indigenous migrants in the U.S.
- Taste Oaxaca’s famous cuisine and meet outstanding local chefs
- Visit communal businesses and community ecotourism projects resisting mining and transgenic corn
- Stay overnight at the Capulalpam eco cabins
- Visit Oaxaca’s Museum of Popular Art
- Visit a temazcal, a traditional vapor bath, to learn about indigenous healing methods and if you like you may purchase an optional massage or spiritual cleanse.
- Visit the Monte Alban ruins, the first Mesoamerican urban center