Real Mexico

14 Days | Mexi-go on an adventure to bright blue cenotes, ancient Maya ruins and bright city streets

4.8 out of 5 based on 48 reviews submitted.
18 to 29s
AUD $1,929
View dates and book
This trip is for the 18 to 29 year olds

Make new amigos in Mexico with this 14-day exploration from the sprawling Mexico City to the coastal Playa del Carmen. This overland adventure covers the best of the mex – from the colourful architecture and weaving cobblestoned laneways of Oaxaca to the highland charm of San Cristobal de las Casas. Discover the lush jungle and ruins of Palenque, the lively hub of Merida and the gems of the Caribbean. Stay in an eco-lodge in Lacanja’s wilderness, then soak up heaps of free time to get active (or laze in speakeasy bars). Not to mention a visit to the new Wonder of the World – Chichen Itza! All of this, plus streetside tacos, tostadas and tejates and you’ll see, hear, feel and taste the real Mexico.

Trip overview

Map of Real Mexico including Mexico
Mexico City, Mexico
Playa del Carmen, Mexico
18 to 29s
Physical rating
Indicates how physically exerting a trip is, and how fit you will need to be to enjoy it. More info on physical ratings
Min 18 - Max 29
Group size
Min 1 - Max 16
Trip code
This trip generates 41 kg of CO2-e per person per day.
We offset these emissions on your behalf. But we know that is not enough, so we also have a carbon reduction target.
Bucket list destinations

Tick off all the popular spots and enjoy unique local experiences

Great value

Affordable trips with the freedom to choose how you spend your time

Responsible travel

You book, we donate to help support local communities

Why you'll love this trip
  • Head deep into the jungle to the lush wilderness of Lacanja River during your stay at an eco-lodge, which supports the local indigenous community in the forest of the Lacandon area. Maybe opt to raft through the waterfalls and backwaters or take a guided hike.
  • Tour the historic site of Chichen Itza – one of the new Seven Wonders of the World – and learn why these ancient Maya ruins are the most important in all of Mexico.
  • Experience the bustling nature and bright colours of local Mexican markets. Wander the stalls, snap some photos and pick up traditional handicrafts in Oaxaca and Merida.
  • Indulge in some delicious Mexican cuisine, with an included taco crawl and marquesitas tasting and some optional cooking classes (not to mention the huge range of fresh seafood, hot street food and everything corn!)
  • Kick back, get active or explore this amazing region with loads of free time – maybe go snorkelling in the paradisical waters of Playa de Carmen, discover the ruins of Uxmal from Merida or take day trips to some archaeological sites and ancient Maya ruins.
  • By travelling on this trip, you’ll directly support our Intrepid Foundation partner, Gastromotiva. Donations provide job training for vulnerable youth in Rio De Janeiro and promote the importance of sustainable cooking.

Is this trip right for you?
  • This trip includes time spent travelling in a private vehicle and public bus with your group, including an overnight bus journey. Extra space can be tight, and conditions may feel a little cramped. It’s all part of the adventure and a great way to get to know your fellow travellers. Please read the itinerary carefully for travel time estimates.
  • Mexico's climate is tropical, so it can get really hot and humid. Wear loose clothing and make sure to stay hydrated, especially while out on walking tours. You can expect to walk a lot on this trip and the terrain is rarely flat. Make sure to pack a jacket for the higher altitude cities like Mexico City, Puebla and San Cristóbal de las Casas.


This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2024 to 31 December 2024.

View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2023 - 31 December 2023

Map of Real Mexico including Mexico



1 breakfast, 2 lunches, 1 dinner


Private vehicle, Public bus, Local bus, Overnight public bus, Taxi


Hotel (10 nights), Overnight public bus (1 night), Cabin (2 nights)

  • Mexico City - Leader-led Taco Crawl
  • Mexico City - Leader-led orientation walk
  • Oaxaca - Leader-led orientation walk
  • San Cristobal de Las Casas - Leader-led Orientation Walk
  • San Cristobal - Santo Domingo Market Visit
  • Agua Azul - Waterfall Visit
  • Leader-led Informal Spanish Lesson
  • Lacanja River - Jungle Camp
  • Palenque - Archaeological site (Entrance fee & Transport)
  • Merida – Marquesitas Snack
  • Merida - Leader-led orientation walk
  • Playa del Carmen - Leader-led Orientation Walk
  • Chichen Itza - Archaeological site
  • Yokdnozot Cenote – Visit and Swim
Add on activities
  • Mexico City - Diego Rivera Murals in the Mural Museum (Entrance Fee) - MXN35
  • Mexico City - Boat ride through Floating Gardens of Xochimilco (Approx. per boat per hour) - MXN600
  • Mexico City - Chapultepec National History Museum - MXN90
  • Mexico City - National Museum of Anthropology (entrance fee) (Closed Mondays) - MXN90
  • Mexico City - Palace of Fine Arts (Palacio de Bellas Artes) (entrance fee) (Closed Mondays) - MXN80
  • Mexico City - Frida Kahlo Museum (entrance fee) - MXN250
  • Oaxaca - Monte Alban archaeological site (entrance fee) - MXN90
  • Oaxaca - Santo Domingo Cultural Centre (entrance fee) - MXN85
  • Mitla - Archaeological site (Entrance fee, Guide & Transport) - MXN900
  • Oaxaca - Tule Tree, Teotitlan weaving town, mescal distillery - USD27
  • Oaxaca - Cooking class - MXN1300
  • San Cristobal de las Casas - Jade Museum - MXN65
  • Sumidero Canyon - Boat Excursion (entrance and transport) - MXN565
  • Lacanja - Half-day Rafting, Waterfalls & Archaeological site (Entrance fee, Guide & Transport) (Minimum 4 people) - MXN800
  • Merida - Celestun Bird Sanctuary (entrance and transport) - MXN1035
  • Merida - Uxmal Ruins tour (inc. shared transport and guide) - MXN1400
  • Playa del Carmen - Half-day tour of Tulum Archaeological site (Entrance fee, Guide & Transport) - MXN800
  • Playa del Carmen - Ferry to Cozumel (Round-trip Ticket) - MXN500
  • Dos Ojos Cenote - Fresh Water Rock Pool (entrance fee with snorkelling gear & life jacket included) - MXN550

Dates and availability

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Important notes

1. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Day 5 (Overnight bus) and Day 8 & 9 (Cabin) where you will be in shared accommodation. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Read Essential Trip Information


4.8 out of 5 based on 48 reviews submitted.
Reviews are from travellers who have completed their trip and want to share their experience. We show all reviews, but may remove any that include profanity or inappropriate content, are unrelated to the trip or reveal personal details.

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Adam · Traveled November 2023
What are you waiting for? - This trip is definately the best way to spend 2 weeks exploring the best of Mexico for culture, history and of course the food!
Review submitted 21 Nov 2023

Jess · Traveled October 2023
Gil was an absolute delight and it was a joy to be shown around by him! Friend as well as a tour leader! Thoroughly enjoyable trip and fully experienced in the culture!
Review submitted 10 Nov 2023

Luci · Traveled September 2023
A truly excellent tour! A brilliant experience of Mexico and Vin was the most knowledgeable, empathetic, enthusiastic tour guide! We learnt so much and had the best time with wonderful people!
Review submitted 19 Sep 2023

Eleanor · Traveled September 2023
Could not recommend this tour enough. Our tour guide Vin was incredible and I learned so much. Thank you Intrepid!
Review submitted 19 Sep 2023

Craig · Traveled September 2023
First off Vin was the best guide we could of asked for. This tour packs a lot into it so it's a bit of a whirlwind, but I've came away with a lifetime of memories in two weeks. Would highly recommend to anyone
Review submitted 19 Sep 2023
Real Mexico
AUD $1,929