Culture & Natural Immersion in the Yucatan Peninsula

12 Days

TripAdvisor-5 stars

Culture & Natural Immersion in the Yucatan Peninsula

12 Days

TripAdvisor-5 stars

Destinations: ValladolidYalcobáChichén ItzáYokdzonotNuevo DurangoTulumFelipe Carrillo PuertoBacalarCalakmul.


  • Enjoy Maya cuisine in a gastronomic workshop in Nuevo Durango
  • Float through the ancient water canals of Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve
  • Stay overnight in the home of a local family and experience a cultural immersion
  • Local crafts and archaeology, explore the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve
Floating in the Sian canal in Mexico

DAY 1 - Self drive from Cancun Airport to your Hotel in Valladolid

Self drive (approx 2 hours)

DAY 2 - Visit Yalcobá and learn about the daily life of a Mayan community

Mayan jungle of Chunhuhub

Visit Yalcobá, a Mayan community near Valladolid, and enjoy a day of cultural immersion. You will  have a full day of adventure and fun, here you will have a guided tour through the  Milpa and the Mayan jungle, you will explore caves, and wonderful virgin cenotes where you can swim and abseil. Then  you  will have the opportunity to stroll through the craft workshop, which is distinguished by  its beautiful dreamcatchers and comfortable  hammocks. Mayan gastronomy is also one of the many treasures you will find here. You will taste the delicious  typical dishes of the region during a lunch in the community.

DAY 3 - Visit Chichen Itza and swim in the mystical cenote of Yokdzonot

Chichen Itza pyramid, Yucatan

Today you will meet your local guide to visit  the archaeological site of Chichen Itza. This pre-Hispanic city is recognized as a  UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was once the  most revered centre of worship and pilgrimage on the Yucatan Peninsula. 

Then, you will have lunch and swim in the cenote of Yokdzonot. In 2005, a group of women from the rural  community of Yokdzonot, Yucatan, organized to transform the Mayan cenote of their village into a unique ecotourism site. The cenotes were  the main source of water supply in the middle of the Mayan jungle, which motivated the  development of cities and settlements. They were also seen as symbolic settings and spaces  for rain, life, death, rebirth and fertility rituals. This is why they were so sacred to this culture. This cenote is quite unknown, so it is not as crowded as others and its waters have a cool  temperature to mitigate the heat outside. 

DAY 4 - Gastronomic Workshop at Nuevo Durango Community

mexico San-Juan-Market-rutopia-gastronomy-tour2

Today you will head to Nuevo Durango, a small community characterised by being a traditional Mayan village that has managed to maintain its cultural identity both in language and customs and has been driven by activities such as ecotourism and organic food production. Your local English-speaking guide will be waiting for you for a gastronomic workshop lasting approximately 4 to 5 hours.

Here you will have the opportunity, not only to enjoy a traditional meal (depending on the season), but you will be part of the whole process, from collecting fresh ingredients from the garden such as onions, tomatoes, avocado, lemons, oranges and everything you need to cook with members of the community some of their typical dishes among which we can find the cochinita and chicken pibil. Finally, you will be able to enjoy the food and an atmosphere of music and songs representative of Mexico and the Mayan culture. 

Rated 5-stars by more than 1,500 travellers on Tripadvisor.




Victoria O.

September, 2022
Two Weeks in Mexico
Seamless transfers, excellent hotels particularly in Mexico city and Puebla, combined with various cultural and food tours. Particular highlights were the cultural/food tours in Mexico city and Puebla (also including the anthropology museum in Mexico city), and the rural tours in Oaxaca where we visited textile workshops, mescal producers and participated in a cooking class using traditional equipment. Also, although we didn't need it, the on call remote assistance was reassuring. I would definitely recommend Rutopia.
Tripadvisor Review of Rutopia

Kris S.

April, 2022
Enjoyed using Rutopia
Enjoyed using Rutopia (Marisol and Melina) to plan my trip to Mexico. Marisol helped me figure out the best options fand booked everything. Melina was my in country support. Rutopia (the company through Kim Kim) is great and would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to take the burden out of vacation planning. My son and I truly enjoyed the trip knowing everything was taken care of and we just had to have fun. Thanks!
Kimkim Review of Rutopia

Melissa W.

July, 2022
Adventures in the Yucatán!
Such an amazing time in the Yucatán! Between floating in the mangroves to visiting Chichén Itzá to spending a whole day on the beach in El Cuyo, I couldn’t have planned a better trip without their help. Thank you so much for an unforgettable birthday vacation!! Simply amazing! Don’t think twice about having them help you plan your next vacation!
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April, 2022
Great experience with this agency, totally recommend!
Great experience with this agency. Our tour in Mexico was perfect and organised with great passion and precision. Special thanks to Mel (our direct contact during the trip) for being super responsive and to Jorge Barbosa (our tour guide in Mexico City). Totally recommend this tour operator!
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Sue G

June, 2022
Mayan Site Tour in Yucatan Penninsula Mexico
Rutopia did an outstanding job with the arrangement and execution of a 9 day tour of Mayan sites in the Yucatan peninsula. We provided Rutopia with the general parameters of the trip we wanted and they suggested an itinerary. After our approval, they set up the hotels, transportation within Mexico, and site tours. The hotels were good quality, and all of the drivers and tour guides showed up on time. We were very impressed with the quality of the tour guides and learned a lot on the trip. Jorge handled setting up the itinerary, and Melina handled the execution of the trip and was readily available via WhatsApp throughout the trip for any questions or issues. Melina was particularly helpful in changing our transportation arrangements to the airport at the last minute per our request. I would recommend Rutopia and would use them again for future trips.
Kimkim Review of Rutopia
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July, 2022
Fantastic Will do it again
My wife and I had a fantastic holiday in Mexico thanks to Marisol, Ana, Teresa and their colleagues & partners. The entire itinerary and arrangements were put together in less than 4 days. What we really liked about Marisol & her team was that they were only a message or a phone call away for any query/suggestion, etc. The trip was bespoke to the extent that Rutopia had kept in mind about our interests, food habits & executed bookings, tours. They were also very flexible in catering to last minute changes/requests. The team took upon them to ensure that our entire trip was comfortable & safe by taking care of even small stuff that one normally finds out post getting to a place. We would definitely like to use their services again!!
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Elena R.

April, 2022
A literally perfect trip to the Yucatan peninsula
Tom and I knew we wanted to go to Mexico. We knew we wanted a little bit of culture, some wildlife, and maybe a splash in the ocean. That's it. With the vague and minimal information we gave them, Rutopia was able to put together a perfect trip for us. We had a flawless itinerary. It's so clear that Rutopia really cares about the communities (animals and humans) in Mexico. Everything we did and everywhere we stayed felt like they were helping us experience Mexico as authentically and respectfully as possible. It's almost impossible to pick a highlight, but top of the list has to be the day we shared with Enrique, a Mayan host who was unbelievably generous with us. He shared the community gardens, including history and background about the families that live in Nuevo Durango and other nearby communities. He showed us the neighborhood cenotes, Punta Laguna, Uma Nojoch Keej (a wildlife reserve), and more. We picked and prepared the plants as Enrique and his wife Blanca showed us the best way to cook them (and rescued us when we were pricked by the nopales!). We saw howler monkeys and spider monkeys in the wild which was very cool. That had to be the very best day, but every day was amazing. Sian Ka'an reserve was lovely, the Mayan ruins were spectacular, the snorkeling in Puerto Morelos was fabulous, the bicycle cenote tour was jaw'droppingly gorgeous. I'm waxing superlative but it really all was like a dream. Beyond the activities, the scheduling and pace was perfect for us. We felt like we really made the most of our six days, but with enough downtime to explore and enjoy at our leisure. From picking up our car at the airport to finding our accommodation, the logistics were very smooth at every interaction. Special shoutout to Melina who pretty much instantly helped us when we had any questions about the trip. We've never used a travel planning service like this before. But after this trip, we'll never go back to the old way!
Tripadvisor Review of Rutopia
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July, 2022
Journey to Mexico City, Cholula and Cuetzalan
We had a wonderful time. We started out in Mexico City with a 2 day tour filled with museums, food, and beautiful sights. We then went on to Cholula to experience the culture in a smaller town, see a local market, and eat traditional food. We finished the tour in a small town called Cuetzalan, where most people speak an indigenous language. All of our guides were great. Thank you for a memorable vacation!
Tripadvisor Review of Rutopia


March, 2022
Just wonderful!
We had an amazing trip excellent organized by Jorge and supervised by Melina from Rutopia. We spent 10 days in Mexico, starting in Ciudad de Mexico where we visited the amazing Teotihuacan and then we flew to Yucatan for the amazing sites of Chichen Itza, Uxmal, Ek Balam, Tulum, Merida, Valladolid and the great Island Holbox. The trip was perfectly organized, the hotels were very good, and the guides were carefully chosen. We highly recommend Rutopia and especially Jorge!
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Tripadvisor Review of Rutopia
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Bikø J

November, 2021
Chiapas, Neri and her family
I traveled to Chiapas for an ecotourism experience with Rutopia and I liked it very much, the team responds very quickly to all questions and accompany the traveler throughout the experience, I missed my flight and they were very flexible to accommodate the entire itinerary, My destination was the lakes of Tziscao, where I was received by Neri with his family in very nice cabins next to a lake with incredible views and a magnificent tranquility, with them you make experiences of beekeeping and coffee and tours to nearby lakes, Montebello is a must! 100% recommended.
Tripadvisor Review of Rutopia
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March, 2021
Super local agency
We have worked with Rutopia for several tours in Mexico in the Yucatán and Chiapas and we have never been disappointed. Authentic experiences, with locals, in magical places and off the beaten tourist track. Our contact Marisol was always super available and responsive, understanding and anticipating our desires. And she speaks very good French. I highly recommend Rutopia!
Tripadvisor Review of Rutopia
Actividad Espeleísmo e1631888268978

Mikel D

April, 2021
The best moment lived in Mexico
We were traveling as a group of friends with nothing organized. We like to improvise and be able to find alternative plans to the conventional tourist routes. We arrived in Puerto Escondido - Mexico's paradise - and started looking for options. A Mexican friend recommended us to contact Rutopia and we did. We explained our way of traveling - which they quickly understood - and in a few hours they came to us with a perfect selection of activities. We chose one of them and the next day we found ourselves galloping through beautiful hills, crossing a small lagoon in canoes, bathing on an unspoiled beach at sunset and sipping freshly picked coconuts with some mezcal. We had dinner in the only hut on the beach, eating fish that had been caught that day from the lagoon. Then we went to see the luminescence of the placton with paddle canoes until we were surprised by one of the biggest and reddest moons I have ever seen in my life. We ended up sleeping in bamboo huts a few meters from the waves. There were no more than 5 huts on the miles of beach that we could see. And at ALL times with an exquisite treatment - sympathy, kindness and attention. This is just one of the plans we booked with Rutopia, which definitely changed the course of our trip. Without a doubt, I would repeat this experience in any place I would like to visit in Mexico. Viva Mexico!
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Claudia A

September, 2020
Super organization, great accommodations and nice team
The trip was perfectly organized, we were always exclusive or in very small groups and had freedom to do our own activities. All accommodations were fantastic and sustainable, the food almost always local and very good, we could always fill our Rutopia water bottles and travel as plastic free as possible. We were met at the airport and had assistance getting a rental car. After that, we traveled independently but had our fixed dates and reservations with Rutopia. It was the perfect mix!
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March, 2020
Circuit in Yucatan
Discovering wonderful and surprising sites, Mayan communities with an unforgettable welcome, breathtaking landscapes, a very pleasant climate in the middle of March...and smiling people! A big thank you to Rutopia and his team for the elaboration of this ideal circuit, alternating nature, city life, simplicity and comfort. Thanks to Mélina for the follow-up during our trip. We don't speak Spanish well enough, and we appreciated having a French-speaking contact person who could be reached if necessary. We still have a lot to discover and hope to come back very soon, and with Rutopia without hesitation!
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Sabrina N

March, 2020
For those who don't like to manage logistics like hotels, rental cars, activities. And above all, to have someone who speaks fluent French that we can reach at any time for the unexpected... You are in the right place! Thank you to Chloe for the preparation of our trip, to Melina our Ariadne's thread and Teresa for her welcome and help at the arrival and departure. A big thank you to Enrique and Blanca from Nuevo-Durango for their welcome, their smiles, their family, a lot of emotions at the time to leave you. Thanks to Mémo for your teaching of Mexican customs (Sian Ka'an) The Yucatan is a magnificent region. And the population is very pleasant. Only downside Holbox... Too much dust, too much smell of fuel oil, too much tourist. I will keep in memory these wonderful moments!
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DAY 5 - Chemuyil Cenotes & Tulum Archaeological Site

Tulum Archeological Part of Mexico

Your adventure begins in the community of Chemuyil, a small beachfront town with plentiful white sand beaches and shallow waters. This project was initiated by 5 young people from the community of Chemuyil who seek to introduce and preserve the cenotes where they used to live and play during their childhood. Their initiative allows the visitor to explore virgin forests, discover the fauna, and become one with nature. You will be assigned a bicycle and start cycling through the charming town of Chemuyil. There you will continue your bike tour to visit 3 different cenotes of different shapes and sizes.

Then, you will visit one of Mexico’s most emblematic archaeological sites declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Together with your local English-speaking guide you will take a tour of approximately 1 hour and a half to learn why these ruins played a particularly important role in the maritime and land trade of the Mayan area, as well as functioning as an astronomical observatory and defensive system. This Mayan city is located in the middle of a mangrove ecosystem and on a cliff facing the beautiful Caribbean Sea, which makes it a unique and spectacular place.

DAY 6 - Ancient Canal at Sian Ka’an Reserve - homestay in Felipe Carrillo Puerto

sian floating canal in Mexico

Today you will visit the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, which in Mayan means “a place where the sky is born”. You will be transferred to the Muyil dock where you will take a boat to navigate through the reserve visiting the Muyil and Chunyaxche lagoons until arriving at the Xlapak dock. Once there, enjoy a serene dip in the water. It is a moment of reconnection with mother earth, as you float slowly through the channels of crystalline waters surrounded by mangroves and the soft sounds of the local birds and other animals. After this magical experience, you will visit the Capelchen Lagoon where with a little luck you will be able to observe manatees and crocodiles in their natural habitat. Back to Muyil where you will be welcomed back with a traditional meal to complete the excursion.

Then, you will continue to Felipe Carrillo Puerto. Here you will be welcomed by a local family, who will open the doors of their home to invite you to spend the next two nights. You will enjoy dinner with them.

DAY 7 - Mayan classes and kayak tour in the Sijil Noh Lagoon

transparent kayak in the lagoon

You will have breakfast with your local family. Then you will participate in a  2 hours of Maya language class. Continue your day with a cooking workshop where you will prepare chicken en pib (buried), make tortillas, salsa and juice. Then, you will have time to enjoy your own creation. After the lunch, you will visit the Maya cemetery, and participate in a Traditional Maya ceremony. Finally, you will visit the local lagoon Sijil Noh Ha where you will have the opportunity of swimming and kayaking. Dinner with your local family. 

DAY 8 - Transfer to Bacalar to enjoy the lagoon of 7 colour

Bacalar Lagoon

A true paradise awaits travelers in Bacalar Lagoon. 

The town sits on the Lagoon of Seven Colors, a lake nicknamed for its beautifully colored water, which makes it the perfect place for stunning sunsets, fresh seafood, and cenote swimming. 

Let's plan your trip

Our team will help you with free destination advice, activity ideas and provide full costings.

DAY 9 - Bacalar Lagoon catamaran sailing boat tour

Catamaran in Bacalar

You will start your tour at the Bacalar dock, where you will board a catamaran sailing boat with your local English-speaking guide. This shared experience lasts 3 to 4 hours, and you will start english toward the south of the lagoon. During the tour, you will enjoy fresh fruit, fruit water, water or beer while you observe and learn about the importance of the mangroves. It is a perfect opportunity to connect with nature sustainably since you will only need the wind to navigate and avoid polluting the ecosystem.

You will visit the famous “Pirates Channel” where you can swim and snorkel. Then, you will continue to the Cenote de la Bruja or Cenote Negro; here, you will also be able to explore its waters and enjoy the colors of the different depths. You will also visit the Isla de Los Pájaros, a locally declared sanctuary, where you will see several species of birds and the famous shades of blue of the Bacalar Lagoon. Finally, you will venture to Cenote Esmeralda, an area of outstanding beauty.

DAY 10 - Workshops and hiking in Mayan communities


You will head to 20 de noviembre Mayan community. First you will explore the richness of the natural heritage area, here you will have a tour on unique trails in the jungle where you will have the opportunity to observe native flora and fauna and appreciate the reforestation initiatives carried out by the community.

Then you will visit Rogelio and his family who will welcome you in their workshop to show you their original crafts made with local materials. His specialty is stone carving, such as limestone, petrified fossils, quartz and obsidian and creating tablets with their own designs inspired by the Mayan culture. With materials such as jade he creates jewelry objects such as earrings and charms. For visitors they offer a complete experience that includes the explanation of the technique and demonstration of stone carving, to then play to become an archaeologist, looking for a piece hidden in the garden of the workshop. To finish, you will have the opportunity to try to carve your stucco piece and take it as a souvenir.

DAY 11 - Explore the ancient archeological site of Calakmul

Tulum_Archeological_site rutopia

This tour will allow you to see the ruins of the ancient Mayan city of Calakmul. You will start the visit early in the morning and during the 60 kilometers that lead you to the archaeological site, you will have the opportunity to appreciate the rich biodiversity of the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve. On the way it is possible to observe the ocellated turkey, hoco pheasant, coati, spider monkey and howler monkey. Upon reaching the archaeological site, you will visit its main monuments and the famous structures I and II that give the site its name. You will learn about its history, architecture, daily life in the city, Mayan rituals and ceremonies. The site covers 25km2 and there are 6224 structures in total, of which 21 can be visited. At the end you will head again to Bacalar where you will spend the night. 


DAY 12 - Self drive from Bacalar to Chetumal Airport

Self drive to Chetumal International Airport. 

Create your Mexican adventure!

Our team will help you with free destination advice, activity ideas and provide full costings.

So you can stop dreaming and start packing! 

See more itinerary examples


History in Tulum

  • Tulum Archaeological Site
  • The Mayan underworld
  • Explore Coba by bike
  • Punta Laguna Nature Reserve
  • Float in the Biosphere Reserve

Yucatan Peninsula

  • Gastronomic workshop
  • Canal float
  • Cultural immersion
  • Calakmul Biosphere Reserve
  • Bacalar Lagoon catamaran

Culture & Natural Immersion

  • Explore subterranean world
  • Archaeological site of Tulum
  • Swimming with beautiful turtles
  • 7-color lagoon of Bacalar
  • Swimming with Whale Sharks