Oaxaca: Heart & Soul

Celebrate the culture and cuisine of Oaxaca. Meet traditional weavers and sculptors in mountain villages. Relax and recharge in our tranquil Oaxaca City retreat.

Savor Oaxaca

Experience the region’s best food, art and culture

April 3 - 9, 2022

One exclusive Arlington Club departure

Oaxaca, Mexico

Oaxaca City, Teotitlan del Valle, Monte Albán, Coyotepec

Price from

$4,500

Per person
Based on double occupancy

Speak with an adventure expert

+1 (855) 219-8018

“This is the best thing I’ve ever tasted.” It’s a phrase you’ve said more than once today, let alone this week. You’re eating your way through a bustling central market, sampling everything you can get your hands on. Seared meats a la plancha send smoke into the air, baskets brim with fresh produce, mole powders, flowers and coffee beans. You crunch into sweet and aromatic nixtamalized corn elote like you can’t get anywhere else. How can such deceptively simple ingredients yield such intoxicating flavors? You’re in Oaxaca–packed with culture, traditions and more flavors than you can imagine.

If you travel to stimulate ALL of your senses, this trip is for you. Wander colorful markets and prepare a farm-to-table feast, taste incredible street food from moles to tlayudas, then wash it all down with the finest hand-crafted mezcals. All the while, connect with shamans and weavers, local artists and chefs. This is our Oaxaca.

Experience True Oaxaca

The. Best. Food.

From humble street stalls to award-winning kitchens, we'll savor the freshest mole sauces, the smokiest mezcals

Soulful & Artisanal

We'll explore agave farms and meet traditional mezcaleros, weavers and sculptors in nearby mountain villages

Connect & Recharge

Reset your emotional spirit, and connect with Arlington Club members and group of like-minded cultural explorers

Your Oaxaca Experience

“Oaxaca is a gift. Just the light and colors. And obviously—the food.” -Anthony Bourdain

“For everything bad, there's mezcal. And for everything good, as well.” -Local Wisdom

We curate travel experiences to inspiring destinations. Each adventure is designed to broaden horizons, expand exploration and, perhaps most important, create opportunities for Arlington Club members to connect with one another to create lifelong memories and friendships.

Day by Day

Day 1

Bienvenidos a Mexico! We’ll meet up and get oriented with one of Latin America’s great colonial wonders: Oaxaca City. We’ll walk through the cobblestone streets and snack through its central markets, a feast of the senses where tasajo (dried meats) hang, open fires grill delicious tlayudas (toasted tortillas topped with Oaxacan string cheese and grilled meats), and vendors scurry past offering chapulines (roasted grasshoppers) and pastry-like pan de yema stacked in woven baskets. Delicious (even those grasshoppers, we promise).

Oaxaca’s textile museum is our next stop, followed by cocktails at our hotel to toast the start of our adventure. Dinner tonight is an inspired celebration at chef Alejandro Ruiz’s Casa Oaxaca, a World’s 50 Best selection.

Day 1 Highlights

City market food tour

Welcome cocktails

Dinner at Casa Oaxaca

Stay at El Callejon in Oaxaca

Day 2

Oaxaca’s sense of art is vibrant, ageless—and everywhere. Today we go to its source, artist home-studios in nearby mountain villages. First we’ll drive into the Mixtec Mountains and meet local ceramicists Manuel Reyes and Marisela Gómez. They’ll invite us into their home studio and show how they use local clay and natural fibers to craft their signature figurines. Then the artist couple will sit with us for a home-cooked meal with local mezcal—these are the authentic flavors of Oaxaca, and there’s nothing comparable.

Next we visit Casa de Arte San Agustin. This cavernous former textile factory was converted into an art space and donated to the rural community by the Oaxacan artists and philanthropist Francisco Toledo. Afterwards we return to the city, where the evening is ours to explore Oaxaca’s world-class restaurants, or the taco stands set up along the lit-up zocalo, just a few blocks from our hotel.

Day 2 Highlights

Visit local ceramicist studio

Home-cooked meal in artist home

Visit Casa de Artes San Agustin

Stay at El Callejon in Oaxaca

Day 3

Today we get the true Oaxacan farm-to-table experience. Our morning is at Rancho 314 (‘Tres Catorce’ to the locals), an urban farm on the edge of the city that supplies the top local restaurants with produce. We’ll break into small groups and take turns making mole, tamales, Oaxacan cheese, and get a hands-on look into the local flavor profiles. For lunch, we savor the al fresco feast and enjoy all the local delicacies we had a hand in preparing.

Back in the city, we’ll have time to relax back at our hotel. In the evening we’ll regroup for a special dinner: a street-food walking tour, to enjoy more of the elevated flavors and vibrant culture of Oaxaca.

Day 3 Highlights

Cooking experience at Rancho 314

Farm-to-table lunch

Street-food walking tour & dinner

Stay at El Callejon in Oaxaca

Day 4

We begin this epic day at the hilltop ruin of Monte Albán, a vast complex of pyramids, a palace, shrines dating from 500 BC—and easily one of Mesoamerica’s grandest sites. We explore its monumental scale and the intricate carvings of bas relief sculptures, with one of Mexico’s great colonial cities sprawling below us.

Next, we’ll stop for a traditionally cooked lunch in San Martin, feasting on succulent barbecued goat the traditional way—roasted in the ground overnight—and prepared just for us as honored guests. Then we stop in the village of Coyotepec, a Zapotec community with a pottery tradition that goes back more than 2,000 years. We’ll meet the master artisans who use barro negro (black clay) to produce stunning high-sheen pieces decorated with intricate openwork flowers and geometric forms. We end our art-filled day back in Oaxaca, with dinner on our own.

Day 4 Highlights

Visit Monte Albán temple complex

Traditional lunch

Meet Coyotepec potters

Stay at El Callejon in Oaxaca

Day 5

Today we head back into the mountains, where villages devoted to arts and crafts lurk in valley shadows. We’ll stop at the Zapotec village of Teotitlan del Valle, a weaving village with about 5,000 people (and 2,000 looms). We’ll meet a local Zapotec weaving family, who’ll demonstrate their intricate craft using natural fibers for dyes (and even a grounded insect for the bright reds), just as they have for the past 14 generations. A home-cooked Zapotec lunch awaits us, with a chance for us to learn and to prepare local recipes.

In the afternoon, we travel by row after row of agave plants in the mountain valleys, to meet up with a traditional mezcalero. Agave is everywhere here. We’ll learn how these passed-down, timeless techniques turn agave hearts into mezcal, the smoky cousin-spirit of tequila and one of Oaxaca’s famed exports. After a tasting, or two, of the artisanal mezcal on hand, we’ll return to Oaxaca where the night is yours to track down an unforgettable meal, craft beer bars or – porque no? – more mezcal.

Day 5 Highlights

Visit Zapotec weaving village

Home-cooked meal with Zapotec family

Mezcal tasting

Stay at El Callejon in Oaxaca

Day 6

Today is ours to revitalize the spirits. We’ll meet with a local shaman, who’ll share the secrets of a cleansing ritual that’s been in practice here for thousands of years, using smoked copal to bid farewell to negative energies. We’ll leave feeling electric and magical, and toast the results at our farewell dinner at Rancho Portozuelo, an organic ranch owned by Chef Alejandro Ruiz of Casa Oaxaca. Our dinner is private, our access is deep, and the food and live music unforgettable, capturing the traditions, heritage and true flavors of Oaxaca.

Day 6 Highlights

Meet local shaman

Private farewell dinner at Rancho Portozuelo

Stay at El Callejon in Oaxaca

Day 7

All great things come to an end, alas. We’ll have a big farewell breakfast: hot chocolate (not too sweet, not too rich), hand-patted just-made tortillas, huevos rancheros blanketed in a richly flavorful mole. Then we’ll bid farewell to Oaxaca, and pack our things for a short drive to Oaxaca’s airport for wherever your journey next takes you. Buen viaje!

Day 7 Highlights

Transfers to airport

Where We Sleep

A peaceful oasis in Oaxaca City—our accommodations are small-scale and boutique, the ideal ways to get acquainted with Oaxaca life

El Callejon

Oaxaca City

Off a central side street, a few blocks from the zocalo and central shops and eateries, a street gate opens into a breathtaking oasis that’s our Oaxaca City home: a boutique hotel with a dozen spacious rooms blending the city’s distinctive styles. Serenity reigns in its thoughtful garden spaces, with palm trees, covered walkways and an outdoor patio bar.

I loved eating goat just after it was lifted from the pit, sipping on a mezcal.
Diana C.
This is more than just a trip. It’s authentic and joyful, and a powerful reminder of why we travel.
Scott M.
The meals made for us in local homes were just heavenly.
Andrew B.

Questions?

That’s OK, we have answers. Read our FAQs below or call +1 (855) 219 - 8018 to ask us any questions you have about traveling with Arlington Club. We're here 8am-5pm weekdays Pacific.

  1. What does the price include?

    Six nights at unique, 4-star boutique accommodations; private travel for all day trips and excursions; departure airport transfer; private tours with local guides and cultural experts; exclusive VIP access and tastings; private transportation; entrance fees; daily breakfasts, most lunches and dinners; local beverages with meals.

  2. What does the price not include?

    International roundtrip airfare; travel insurance; transportation to the trip’s starting point; activities not included in the trip itinerary; hotel incidentals including room service, laundry service and hotel bar tabs; food and beverages not included in itinerary; gratuity for tour leader.

  3. Where does the trip start and end?

    Our adventure begins and ends at the El Callejon Hotel in Oaxaca, Mexico. The closest airport is Oaxaca International Airport (OAX). On our final day together, we will organize a complimentary transfer for all guests who's flight home departs at 1pm or later from OAX airport.

  4. What travel documents are needed?

    US citizens are not required to have a visa for tourist visits to Mexico, but are required to show a valid US passport. It is recommended that your passport is valid for six months after your travels are over. On arrival in the airport, you will be issued a visitor’s permit, known as a FMM (Forma Migratoria Multiple). For citizens of other countries, please check with the Mexico Embassy or Consulate for information and requirements.

  5. Do I need to pay a solo traveler supplement?

    For solo travelers, there is a $2,000 single-supplement fee—paid at the time of booking to secure a private room. If you would like us to pair you with a roommate, that option may be available upon checkout—these spots are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

  6. Who is going on this trip?

    Our adventures typically have between 10 and 18 Arlington Club members and guests, and our Modern Adventure Team. Our experiences are fun and inclusive and you can expect to be joined by a diverse group in terms of age, background and interests—including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This adventure is for travelers age 18 and above.

  7. Who is leading this trip?

    This trip is led by an expert Modern Adventure trip leader. They're an experienced travel guide, a representative of Modern Adventure and your go-to person for questions or concerns on the trip. We’ll be joined throughout our adventure by local, expert guides who are deeply knowledgeable with respect to local cultures, customs and history and are passionate about sharing that with us.

  8. What is the cancellation policy?

    You may cancel on or before December 4, 2021, and receive a full refund minus a $500 per-person service fee. If you cancel on or after December 5, 2021, there is a 50% cancellation fee. On or after February 2, 2022 there is a 100% cancellation fee. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases of family/medical emergency or cases of the trip being canceled (see our Terms and Conditions for full details).