Visits to the Apparition sites of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Shrines and Basilica; the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City, the Chapel of Our Lady of the Rosary & the Cathedral in Puebla, Shrine of San Miguel Del Milagro in Tlaxcala, Apparition sites of Our Lady in Ocatlan, and visit the world-famous Pyramids of Teotihuacan & ruins (Pyramids of theSun & the Moon), & Floating Gardens in Xochimilco
Day 1 (June 15)
US DEPARTURE & ARRIVAL IN MEXICO CITY
Depart USA and arrive in Mexico in the afternoon. After immigration, customs and baggage claim proceed to our meeting place at Terminal 1 - Door #7. All pilgrims will meet here. If your flight arrives in Terminal 2, please take an Aero Tren (for free) which will take you to Terminal 1. Stop for Money Exchange at the airport. There are several money exchange booths. Be wary of hidden commission costs. Choose the one farther away from the arrival gates, they provide better exchange rates. We found the best rates near Door #7. We will need Mexican Pesos for lunch meals, public rest rooms, souvenir shopping, etc. Lunch is on your own at the airport if you arrive in the afternoon. From the airport, attend Holy Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Drive to downtown (about 30 minutes from the Basilica depending on traffic) for Hotel check-in. After hotel check-in, meet for dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 2 (June 16)
MEXICO CITY: SHRINE OF OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE & TEOTIHUACAN PYRAMIDS
Breakfast: 7:00 AM/ Depart Hotel: 8:15 AM Morning Mass 9:00 AM at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. After breakfast at our hotel, we will travel to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe for Mass. After Mass we will have a guided tour of the Basilica, where the miraculous Tilma is housed, and climb the hilltop Chapel of Tepeyac where the history of Our lady's visit to Guadalupe will be related and various points of interest in the Tepeyac area surrounding the Basilica, each associated with the story of Saint Juan Diego's encounter & the apparitions of Our
Lady more than 500 years ago. These sites are as follows:
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE APPARITIONS:
• Tepeyac: (Guadalupe Basilica) Site of the holy apparitions
• Tlatelolco: Saint Juan Diego's Christian formation and baptism.
• Cuautitlan: Saint Juan Diego
• Tulpetlac: Uncle Juan Bernardino's life andthe Fifth Apparition - this is outside the Basilica
• Ex Archbishopric: Bishops Palace and the Imprinting Miracle - this is outside the Basilica
• Metropolitan Cathedral: First exhibition date of the original cloth/Tilma (December 12 to 26, 1531) - will visit during our tour at downtown.
DISTINGUISHED AND NATIONAL SHRINE OF THE GUADALUPE VIRGIN BASILICA
Juan Diego's tilma, the sack cloth bearing the miraculous image of the Holy Virgin, is exhibited in the main Basilica.One special stop is La Capilla del Pocito (Chapel of the Little Well) - a well which reputedly opened under the feet of the Virgin.
This building was consecrated on October 12th, 1976. Its modern architectural design is based on a circular plan of One Hundred meters diameter, aimed at a larger audience who are participating in liturgical celebrations, and admiring the beauty of Saint Juan Diego's cape
This building was made to honor Holy Mary of Guadalupe and consecrated on May 1st. 1709. Architect Pedro de Arrieta also designed on the front doors a group of high reliefs with the Manifestations to Juan Diego, along with apostles and prophets.
The church and cloister of the Capuchin Sisters is the Franciscan female congregation, which was built by architect Ignacio Castera in 1787. This temple, as well as others of its kind, has its doors on the side instead of the front, not facing the main altarpiece. This design was
planned to make it easier for the nuns to be at mass without breaking their cloister votes, consecrating their life to Jesus Christ inside their nunnery forever.
This singular time machine was opened in 1991. It shows different time measuring methods: On the front it has a civil clock, and an astronomical astrolabe. On the right side is a sundial. On the left side it has an Aztec calendar, used to set planting and harvest times, based on an 18 month or 20 days system. Finally, in the front panel it has a circular stage carillon, where the Virgin Manifestations are shown.
On 2011 this area was donated by Carlos Slim Foundation to expand the Holy Mary Sanctuary's capacity, and welcome more pilgrims. Here you will find an Evangelization Center, an auditorium, meeting rooms for congress and conventions, a Guadalupanian Museum, a pigeon shelter, columbarium for ash urns, and a large plaza, where different ethnic groups can show their faith in their cultural expressions (dancing and processions)
The Native's Parish Church
This eremite is the oldest building in all the area. It was built around 1649, containing the Holy Cloth before being moved to the Basilica. Its name comes from the fact that Saint Juan Diego lived here his last years and later a brotherhood of Native Americans was founded here in 1679.
The Water Well
There used to be a well, right on the Tepeyac hill slope. For many years, people believed that this was the actual place where Virgin Mary had spoken to Saint Juan Diego. Unfortunately, those who washed their wounds, and drank the water polluted it. Later, architect Francisco Guerrero y Torres designed this chapel around the well. Nor the architect, both masons and other workers charged for its construction, finished in 1791.
This group of seventeen sculptures is on the Tepeyac hill gardens. It represents the Native American's homage to Holy Mary of Guadalupe. It is based on two cascades that gather on the dark-skinned Lady 's feet, symbolizing the birth of a new people, originating from Native and Spanish blood. It was opened in September 1986.
The Sailor's Mast
This monument was built on the Eastern slope path, at the same time that the Well's Chapel, remembering a Spanish boat that avoided shipwreck in front of Veracruz coast by praying to Our Lady of Tepeyac Hill and saving their life. As gratitude, the sailors brought the ship's mast to be the axis of a monument. However, in the beginning of XX Century, a strong wind destroyed it, so it was replaced by a more resistant one, made of concrete.
Chapel of the Hill
The Guadalupanian tradition recalls on this place, at the top of Tepeyac hill, where Saint Juan Diego gathered the flowers to be the proof to be shown to Bishop Zumarraga, as testimony of Holy Mary of Guadalupe's Manifestation. However, the chapel was built until 1666, when the baker Cristobal de Aguirre and his wife Teresa Pelegrina, financed a small church to be built. Since its room wasn't enough for the great number of pilgrims that came to see the holy place, a larger one was built in 1749.
Jesus Christ King Altar
On one side of Tepeyac Hill a Prayer's Altar for Jesus Christ King was built in correspondence to its liturgical celebration, including a path with limestone monuments to the ninth blesses of the Gospel. Along the path you see the images of Jesus and Mary's Sacred Hearts, and it ends at an impressive Jesus Christ King bronze sculpture, which is 18 feet tall, representing Jesus on top of a globe, with a crown and a scepter on one hand.
John Paul II monument:
This sculpture was made to remember the Pope's visit to Mexico in 1979. It is a cast bronze large nine feet sculpture, representing the Pope in a blessing gesture with a walking stick on one hand. It was design by artist Ernesto R. Tamariz, from Puebla city and it was placed between the old and new Basilicas so everyone could see it, upon its inauguration on December 12th, 1981, as part of 450 anniversary celebrations of Tepeyac Hill's Virgin Mary manifestations.
**Lunch at a local restaurant on your own**
TEOTIHUACAN PYRAMIDS & RUINS
After our late lunch, we will visit the world-famous Pyramids of Teotihuacan & Ruins (Pyramids of the Sun & the Moon). In the year 600 AD., Teotihuacan was one of the largest cities in the world housing more than 75 temples to the Aztec gods. Teotihuacan translated means: Place Where Gods Were Made. We will have the opportunity explore the ruins and those who are able, can climb the pyramids of the Sun and/or the Moon.
Tulpetlac (5th Apparition Site)
We will depart to Tulpetlac where Juan Diego's uncle, Juan Bernardino, was cured. This is the church of the Fifth Apparition. A church is built over this spot and is known as the Church of the Healing. Juan Bernardino and Juan Diego had properties and land that was inherited from their ancestors, so they had the duty to feed and look after other worker's families' welfare. The Fifth Manifestation sanctuary at Tulpetlac, was built to commemorate Our Lady's fifth manifestation to uncle Juan Bernardino, who was healed from a deadly illness by the Holy Virgin. Here She asked to be known as "The Ever-Virgin Mary of Guadalupe". This sanctuary was built on the place where Saint Juan Diego's humble hut used to be, and where a former chapel was erected before the present one. Return to downtown for dinner.
** Dinner at a local restaurant on your own**
Day 3 (June 17)
CHOLULA & PUEBLA
Breakfast: 7:00 AM / Depart Hotel/Checkout: 8:00 AM Mass 12:00 PM at the Chapel in the Cathedral of Puebla After breakfast, we depart for a full day excursion (2-3 hrs.drive) to the colonial town of Puebla, but we will stop first in Cholula. Prepare yourself for a long drive, we will overnight in Puebla.
ENROUTE: You will start driving from Mexico City and cross the highway with the mountains in the backdrop, towards the east side of the city.
CHOLULA & VIRGIN OF THE REMEDIES
We drive to Cholula known as Cholula de Rivadavia, is a city and district located in the metropolitan area of Puebla, Mexico. Cholula is best known for its Great Pyramid, where we can climb (optional) to the top of one of the largest pyramids in the world, with the Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de los Remedios (Our Lady of the Remedy) sanctuary on top of the pyramid. The city of Cholula claims to have numerous chapels, a chapel for every day of the year.
SANTA MARIA TONANTZINTLA
Santa Maria Tonantzintla This unique Church combines two religious interpretations that coexist (the indigenous and the Christian) and it its considered the most representative church of the indigenous baroque art. This Church is one of the most important and visited temples in Puebla State, and the only one that combines the indigenous and Christian religion. It was declared historic monument on 1933.
PUEBLA (Capilla de Rosario & Cathedral of Puebla)
We continue to Puebla - City of the Angels and Churches, the fourth largest city in México and a great example of Spanish colonial architecture. The Puebla region is famous for its beautiful Churches, cuisine, and hand-painted “Talavera” tiles. We visit the unforgettable Chapel of the Rosary which is inside the Church of Santo Domingo. The Rosary Chapel is one of the most exquisite in all of Mexico with its most famous scalloped gold leaf walls and ceilings. The Santo Domingo church and its Baroque-style Capilla de Rosario were so spectacular that they were once considered the 8th Wonder of the World. We then visit Cathedral of Puebla for Mass, we will have a small tour of the Cathedral. After lunch, we will continue on to St. Francis of Assisi Church where we will view the in-corrupt body of Blessed Sebastian de Aparicio, a famous local figure through whose intercessory prayers many miracles have been reported. Tonight we will check-in for our hotel in Puebla for the overnight.
Day 4 (June 18)
TLAXCALA: OCOTLAN - SAN MIGUEL DEL MILAGRO
OCOTLAN (OUR LADY OF OCOTLAN)
Following breakfast, we depart Puebla, traveling to Ocotlán to visit the beautiful Basilica of Our Lady of Ocotlán, where we admire the miraculous and perfectly preserved Image of Our Lady. The Image was found in a burned Ocote tree after She appeared to the visionary Juan Diego BernardinoO in 1541. Ever since, Mary has been honored as Our Lady of Ocotlán, Our Lady of the Oak that Burned. The Shrine of Our Lady of Ocotlán, is also popularly known as a 'Mexico's Lourdes.' Tradition says that in the 16th century, prayers to the Virgin during a drought led to discovery of the miraculous well. The Shrine was built in gratitude for the answered prayers. Today the well draws pilgrims from miles around. We attend Mass here and have time to collect healing water from the well.
SAN MIGUEL DEL MILAGRO, TLAXCALA
We will continue to San Miguel del Milagro, where St. Michael the Archangel appeared to Diego Lazaro de San Francisco in 1631
during a plague and directed him to the Grotto and to a well of miraculous healing waters to heal the sick. Today this well is pretty dry, but we can get some water from the sacristy.
(Bring an empty small bottle to collect some miraculous water)
Return to our Hotel in Mexico City for 2 more nights.
OUR LADY OF OCOTLAN CHURCH
Day 5 (June 19)
METROPOLITAN CATHEDRAL, ZOCALO, SAGRADA FAMILIA, & XOCHIMILCO
Breakfast: 7:00 AM / Depart Hotel: 8:30 AM Daily Mass: 9:00 Our Lady of Assumption Metro Cathedral
CITY TOUR OF HISTORIC SITES IN MEXICO CITY
HOLY MARY'S ASSUMPTION METROPOLITANCATHEDRAL
In the morning, we will tour the oldest and largest Cathedral in all of Latin America,
the Our Lady of the Assumption Metropolitan Cathedral located in the Zocalo square.
Throughout your time in the Cathedral, you will be overwhelmed by the stunning
paintings, altar pieces, and statues. Inside we will visit the Chapel of the Miraculous
Cross of Poison. Originally made of white marble, the cross miraculously turned black
from absorbing poison placed on it intended to kill the Bishop who traditionally
kissed the feet of the cross every day at mass. It is the first cathedral
built in the Americas, along two hundred years, therefore incorporating different
architectural styles, such as Herrerian and Baroque, among others.
As centuries went on, Mexico City's cathedral was enriched in the 1700's with one of
the most outstanding altarpieces in the Americas: The King's and the Forgiveness Chapels,
designed by Jeronimo de Balbas.
We may also visit the central canonical chorus, a place with marvelous wooden ebony carved seats are located. Also, along the Cathedral's side Chapels and altarpieces you'll admire its paintings and sculptures. The vestry is oldest space in the building, where the Holy Original Image of Guadalupe Virgin was exhibited. The building was finally consecrated in 1813.
OPTIONAL: For those who are able to climb, you can have a tour (about 45 minutes) of the ancient Bell tower on top of the Cathedral and hear about its interesting history. Also, the view on the top is so spectacular overlooking the Zocalo Square and the city in general. Walk on the roof of the Cathedral and see its beautiful arches and other architectural and artistic details..
We will also take a panoramic visit to the "Templo Mayor" archaeological excavations and its Guatemala street and its hundreds of religious articles stores; The church and square of Santo Domingo (Saint Dominic), the first university and the seat of the holy inquisition back to the colonial times; we will also visit the San Francisco and La Profesa churches from the XVI century and drive through Tacuba street to admire its ancient buildings, squares and monuments, the square of Santa Veracruz (Holy Cross) and its leaning churches and stop at San Hipolito (Saint Hipolite) parish church for a visit and see its famous image of San Judas Tadeo (Saint Judas Tadeous), that has converted it to be the second most important and most visited religious place in the city after the Guadalupe Basilica.
We will then drive to the Holy Family Church, where you will view the tomb of Bl. Miguel Agustin Pro, the Jesuit martyr. In the Mexican Revolution, a time of great religious persecution occurred in Mexico and Fr. Pro was exiled from Mexico. However, he returned to Mexico and was aided by a
clandestine group who helped him hide from authorities. During the persecution, he assisted many individuals in their spiritual, as well as temporal needs. Although he helped many, he was eventually arrested and killed. His final words before the firing squad were "Viva Cristo Rey! (Long Live
Christ the King!)" At this Church, you are able to pray to this great martyr and venerate his relics. We will also visit the small, but very inspiring Museum dedicated to Blessed Miguel Pro. After this visit, we will visit the actual place where Bl. Miguel was shot. Next, we will visit the Church of Santiago Tlatelolco, where St. Juan Diego was baptized. This area is important as it symbolizes the unique blend of pre-Hispanic and Hispanic cultures that make up Mexico.
XOCHIMILCO FLOATING GARDENS
After lunch at a local restaurant, we will drive to Xochimilco, just 45 minutes south of downtown Mexico City. Enjoy time in the afternoon visiting Mexican Venice where we sail through the Xochimilco Floating Gardens on a gondola-boat ride on traditional trajinera boats or hire a mariachi to serenade you with local music. Xochimilco provides an experience that you would never expect to have in Mexico City and makes for a fun and interesting day trip. This concludes our trip, we drive back to the city and we will have our farewell dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 6 (June 20)
RETURN TO USA (FLIGHT HOME)
Breakfast: 7:00 AM / Depart Hotel: 8:00 AM
Time permitting, depending our flight schedules, we
can attend the 9:00 Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady
of Guadalupe (Farewell Mass); Transfer to Airport for
INCLUDED FOR TOUR PACKAGE
Accommodations in 4 * Hotels
Daily Buffet Continental Breakfast
Transfers from airport to hotel and return
English Speaking Tour Guide
Comprehensive Sightseeing Tours
Daily Transportation to Sites
Entrance fees to sites as per itinerary
Daily Lunch & Dinner
Gratuities for driver, tour guide & breakfast staff
OPTIONAL: We offer Travel Insurance Policies providing you coverage for
both pre-existing conditions and those that may arise during your trip,
including medical and dental emergencies, loss of luggage, trip delay, and
so much more. Please call Xenia for details.
LAND PRICE ONLY: $1095/pp based on DBL Occupancy EXCLUDING AIR ; Single Supplement available for Single Rooms ($250/pp)