African Roots Tour in Veracruz México

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African Roots Tour in Veracruz México

Discover the Many African Influences in the State of Veracruz – From the Spanish Conquest until Present Day

7 Day History Tour

from $2295 /adult • $1995 /child (10-17) + air
Single Supplement +$295

This is an tour designed for those who would have an interest in learning about the history of Africans in México and how they influenced its culture, especially in the state of Veracruz.

On this fun and informative African Roots in Veracruz México tour, we’ll journey to the gulf coast state of Veracruz to learn about the history of the African people and how they contributed immensely to the Mexican culture as it relates to food, dance, music, and politics.

We’ll also have the opportunity to visit and talk with Afro-Mexicans who live in a small rural pueblo near to the city of Veracruz. One of the families there will host our group for a simple lunch at their home.

On one of the evenings, our historian guide will give a presentation called, The 3rd Root – African Presence in México.

Quick History Lesson
After the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire in the early 1500s, African and Caribbean enslaved people were brought by ship to the port of Veracruz by the Spaniards who named this new land, Nueva España (New Spain).

These enslaved people were forced to work on the Spanish plantations and in other capacities. We will learn about the lives of these people, how they fared in this new land, where they were forced to work, and how they left their mark on this gulf coast region of México.

Join us for this informative tour we call, African Roots in Veracruz, México.

  • Meet Afro-Mexicans in their Rural Town
  • Lunch at a Family’s Home
  • First Free Black Town in the Americas
  • Learn how Africans Influenced this Region
  • Xalapa Anthropology Museum
  • City Tour of Veracruz
  • Veracruz Coffee Growing Region

**2023 Tour Dates

Feb 4-Feb 10 (Sa-Fr)
Mar 18-Mar 24 (Sa-Fr)
Jun 17-Jun 23 (Sa-Fr)
Sep 9-Sep 15 (Sa-Fr)

**2023 Prices

$2295 per adult - double
$1995 per child (10-17 yrs)
Single: +$295

Attn: Educators, History Buffs & Travel Organizers
Put together a private group of 10-16 people and your tour package is free! (airfare not included).

We can provide you with advertising materials for promotional use.

If you have alternative dates in mind for your group other than those advertised, contact us and we can check availability.

* Includes day of arrival & departure.
** Prices in USD. Air not included in tour price

DAY 1:
After arriving at the Veracruz International Airport, secure an airport taxi to the hotel in the center of the city.  The rest of the day or evening is free to explore and/or rest up from your flight.

DAY 2:  (B,L)
After breakfast at one of the oldest iconic restaurants in the port city of Veracruz, your group will begin your exploration of African history by traveling to the town of Yanga which is known for being the first freed slave settlement in the Americas. Located less than 1½ hours from Veracruz, this small village was named after a renegade enslaved man by the name of Gaspar Yanga. He is known for being the leader of colonial México’s first slave uprising. It is here that you will visit a small museum which has some excellent murals  representing the plight of the Africans and view the statue honoring this man for his heroism as a liberator.

Lunch will be at a local restaurant which specializes in tasty barbeque pork and chicken. After the meal, you will explore the nearby ruins site of an ex-hacienda. At one time this was the home of the owners of a sugar cane growing operation. On these grounds, you will actually have the opportunity to see where their captive workers were housed and learn of how they were treated by the owners. On the way to this ruins site, everyone will make a quick stop to visit a small Catholic chapel which dates back hundreds of years.

Your group will then travel back to the city of Veracruz. Your evening is free to explore, relax, and have dinner on your own.  (B,L)

DAY 3:  (B,L)
This morning you can start your day with a buffet breakfast at the restaurant located in your hotel. Then everyone will jump in the van for a quick 15 minute ride to explore the harbor fortress called, San Juan de Ulúa. It took several hundred years to complete and is unique in that coral was used as a main material to construct the very thick walls of this massive structure. Your guide will tell you of the history of this fortress as a defender for the city of Veracruz and later how it was used as a prison.

Ok, who likes to shop? Next on your itinerary will be some time to browse the many gift shops found near the downtown area of Veracruz city. If you are thinking of  purchasing some souvenirs for yourself or friends back home, this could be the time and place to do it.

Next, everyone will board the tour vehicle to take a ride down the avenue which parallels the Gulf of México as you head south to the town of Mandinga. Along the way, your tour guide will point out some of the major sites in Veracruz and its sister city, Boca del Rio. Lunch will be at a traditional restaurant in Mandinga which is adjacent to a huge lake that flows into the ocean. Most likely during lunch, your group will be serenaded by some of the local musicians. When everyone is finished, you are welcome to board a small motor launch for a tour on the lake. This is an opportunity to enjoy the warm tropical climate, view the interesting gnarled roots from mangrove trees, and spot many local tropical birds.

Later, you will return to the Gran Hotel Diligencias. Dinner will be on your own.

DAY 4:  (B,L)
This day starts with breakfast at your hotel and then you will be on your way for a most unique cultural interaction. In México, there are cities, towns, and pueblos with the latter being a smaller town. This morning, you will be going to a place which is even smaller than a “Pueblo.” They are called, “Rancerias.” Think small rural settlement or native village.

With the African name, Matamba (named after a large fig tree found in Africa), this out-of-the-way Ranceria is located just a little over an hour away from the city of  Veracruz. Here your group will have the privilege to meet some local Afro-Mexicans, including visiting a small museum there. Through your interpreter guide, you will be able to carry on  conversations with them and hear the story of their family history, their celebrations, as well as their challenges in being officially recognized in Mexican society. You are also invited to partake in a simple lunch prepared by some of the local women. After a round of good-byes and many hugs, your group will continue on to explore another small history museum with old photos and many “nostalgic items.”

In the late afternoon, you will travel back to your hotel in the port city and have the evening free to relax and enjoy dinner on your own.

DAY 5:  (B,L)
After breakfast this morning, everyone will check out of the  hotel and travel inland to the capital of the state of Veracruz, the city of Xalapa. This city is at a higher altitude (about 3000’) and so it may be a little cooler as compared to the temperatures found on the gulf coast.

Your first stop will actually be before you reach the capital city. There is a beautiful restored 16th century hacienda (Hacienda El Lencero) with gardens, a reflection pool, and even a fairs-sized chapel. Inside the house, you will be able to view the colonial furnishings which were mostly brought over from Europe. For a time, this house was occupied by Antonio Lopéz de Santa Anna. You might remember him as the  general who lead the Mexican army against the men who fought at the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas. He was also the president of México for many years.

Then everyone will travel into the city to the Xalapa Anthropology Museum. This very modern historical museum showcases almost 30 centuries of art and history. The most prominent are the original stone heads sculpted by the oldest known civilization in the Americas; the Olmecs. Their facial features have a striking resemblance to faces of those who live in Africa. You can decide for yourself . . . did people from Africa (Egyptians?) come to the new world and create these massive granite carvings?

Lunch is next on the agenda at a very nice restaurant in the city. You will then check into the Villa Las Margaritas Caxa Hotel which is located near the center of the city. Dinner will be on your own.

Later in the evening, everyone will congregate in one of the conference rooms in the hotel to see a presentation by your historian guide  entitled, The 3rd Root – African Presence in México. Through a slide  presentation of old colonial paintings and modern day photos, he will talk about the contributions Africans have made to the Méxican culture from the time they arrived on slave ships until present day. He will also tell of their joys and hardships from living in México.

DAY 6:  (B,L,D)
The first thing this morning will be to check out of your hotel and then travel a short 15 minutes to another beautiful ex-hacienda, Hacienda Zimpizahua. This place was built in the mid 1500’s and has a mix of old buildings and lush tropical vegetation. Interestingly, there is a huge centuries old aqueduct with a big water wheel which is still  operational to this day.

On this morning, you can pretend you are the owner of this huge estate as you will be served a traditional Mexican breakfast (family-style). Sitting outside at a table in the main courtyard, you will have the opportunity to experience how the original owners of this beautiful hacienda were served breakfast each morning.

After a short tour of the property, everyone will travel to the pre-Hispanic Pueblo Mágico town of Coatepec. This town is known for its coffee shops as this it is considered “The Coffee Capital” of Veracruz. This area is in a higher elevation in what is called a “cloud forest” and has all the natural attributes for growing coffee. You will have time to walk around the town square visiting the many boutique shops. And of course, if you would like another cup of coffee, there are plenty of cozy outdoor cafes for sipping and people watching.

You will then travel south to the La Finca Santa Rosa Restaurant which has an excellent birds-eye view of the Texolo (Tey-show-low)  waterfalls. If you saw the classic movie, Romancing the Stone (Kathleen Turner & Michael Douglas), then you may remember a tropical scene with a waterfall in the background. This is that waterfall.

After lunch and after taking many scenic photos, your group will head back to the city of Veracruz and check in again at the Gran Hotel Diligencias. Later in the evening, you will all get together for a farewell dinner to enjoy your final night of Mexican hospitality and to share memories of your Journey into México History.

DAY 7:
Check out and return to the Veracruz Airport
Travel day home

Tour Price Includes:

  • 7 day / 6 night guided tour (includes day of arrival &
    departure)
  • Small group tour size of up to 16 travelers
  • All ground transportation during guided tour days
  • All activities as listed in the itinerary
  • All entrance fees
  • 6 nights of hotel lodgings
  • 5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 1 dinner
  • All tips for all your guides & driver

Excluded:
Airfare
Airport transfer
Additional activities & meals not listed above
Alcoholic drinks
Trip interruption insurance

Read our Tour Terms & Conditions document

Activity Level: Easy-Moderate
Maximum Group Size: 16
Suggested Minimum Age: 10 years
Arrival & Departure Cities: Veracruz (VER) / Veracruz (VER)
Deposit: $350 USD per person

A Reminder - There is no need to fret over how much to tip and of having the right
amount of Mexican Pesos at the end of your tour. Tips are already
included for all specialty guides as well as your main host guide.

If you would like to stay a few more days either before or after your tour with us and would like some assistance in making those plans, contact us.

We can design an independent travel experience based on what you would like to see and do. We can help you to arrange for local transportation, accommodations, and set you up with a local guide.