Tour explores Mexico's colonial cities

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. -- Travcoa created a tour for 1999 that focuses on cultural locales and artist colonies along Mexico's colonial city route.

Colonial Cities-Luxury Mexico is a 14-night escorted program geared toward upscale travelers.

The tour begins in Mexico City and travels along the country's historical "silver route" to San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Zacatecas, Guadalajara and Morelia.

GuanajuatoThe cities are known for well-preserved colonial architecture, historical cathedrals, cobblestone streets, sidewalk cafes, boutiques, art galleries, museums, crafts and vibrant local culture.

The tour was designed to spotlight the cities' wealth of history and culture through comprehensive city tours, as well as venture into the outlying areas.

For example, the tour features an excursion to the pilgrimage site of Guadeloupe from Zacatecas, a visit to Tequila and the village of Ajijic from Guadalajara, and an outing to the Tarascan Indian town of Patzcuaro from Morelia.

In addition to the featured cities, where the average stay is two nights, the program includes stops at historic hamlets along the way, such as Queretaro and Dolores Hidalgo.

Accommodations and dining are designed to showcase the area's unique establishments, many of which are historic landmarks.

Featured properties include the restored colonial-era buildings of Casa de Sierra Nevada in San Miguel de Allende, Morelia's Villa Montana, extensively furnished with antiques, and Hotel Quinta Real in Zacatecas, housed in the stone terraces and vaulted catacombs of an old bullring.

One of the dining venues incorporated into the tour is a hacienda where Pancho Villa and Emiliano Zapata met to plan the Mexican Revolution.

The land-only price of Colonial Cities -- Luxury Mexico is $5,395 per person, double. Travcoa slated two departures for the tour: March 5 and Oct. 1. Each trip is limited to 20 participants.

Phone: (800) 992-2003 from the U.S. and (800) 563-0005 from Canada

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