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MEXICO CITY

Chapultepec, Roma, Xochimilco, La Condesa, Teotihuacan

Mexico City has now become a major player on quite a few must-visit lists.

Mexico City is the capital of Mexico and the most populous city in North America (the center city is around 10 million people, and the population of Greater Mexico City is now close to 30 million). Mexico City is one of the most important cultural and financial centers in the Americas. It is located in the Valley of Mexico (Valle de México), a large valley in the high plateaus in the center of Mexico, at an altitude of 2,240 meters (7,350 ft). The city has 16 boroughs.

Mexico City is and has always been, the sun in the Mexican solar system. Though much-maligned in the past, these days the city is cleaning up its act. Revamped public spaces are springing back to life, the culinary scene is exploding and a cultural renaissance is flourishing. On top of all that, by largely managing to distance itself from the drug war, the nation’s capital remains a safe haven of sorts. Far from shaking off visitors, the earthquakes of 2017 revealed a young society who attracted admiration through their solidarity.

A stroll through the buzzing downtown area reveals the capital’s storied history, from pre-Hispanic and colonial-era splendor to its contemporary edge. This high-octane megalopolis contains plenty of escape valves in the way of old-school cantinas, intriguing museums, inspired dining and boating excursions along ancient canals. With so much going on, you might consider scrapping those beach plans.

The Huffington Post says, “Mexico City has now become a major player on quite a few places-to-visit lists. International guidebooks, the most prestigious travel newsletters, chefs and designers have set their sights on this great city. Residents of Mexico City, also known as Chilangos, who simultaneously love and hate it, know very well why they stay and why they always recommend it to travelers from all over the world.”

This adventure is designed not only to guide you to the most photogenic locations, carefully planned for the best light but to aid you in mentally visualizing a scene before capturing the decisive moment. Our aim is to raise your awareness and spark your creativity so that you not only go home with images to be proud of but use your new found skills to improve and expand your photographic technique in general. Apart from the technical aspect of learning your camera settings and capabilities, you will learn how to turn an ordinary image into an extraordinary image by using your own creativity.

In addition, you will become knowledgeable on how to survey the landscape, utilize and approach your environment, photograph people indigenous to the region and the cultural considerations and challenges of photographing in a foreign country. Our time together will include individual and group discussions, inspiring ideas, and great fun. We cannot think of a better location to express your creativity than Mexico City.

Mexico City is and has always been, the sun in the Mexican solar system. Though much-maligned in the past, these days the city is cleaning up its act. Revamped public spaces are springing back to life, the culinary scene is exploding and a cultural renaissance is flourishing. On top of all that, by largely managing to distance itself from the drug war, the nation’s capital remains a safe haven of sorts. Far from shaking off visitors, the earthquakes of 2017 revealed a young society who attracted admiration through their solidarity.

A stroll through the buzzing downtown area reveals the capital’s storied history, from pre-Hispanic and colonial-era splendor to its contemporary edge. This high-octane megalopolis contains plenty of escape valves in the way of old-school cantinas, intriguing museums, inspired dining and boating excursions along ancient canals. With so much going on, you might consider scrapping those beach plans.

The Huffington Post says, “Mexico City has now become a major player on quite a few places-to-visit lists. International guidebooks, the most prestigious travel newsletters, chefs and designers have set their sights on this great city. Residents of Mexico City, also known as Chilangos, who simultaneously love and hate it, know very well why they stay and why they always recommend it to travelers from all over the world.”

This adventure is designed not only to guide you to the most photogenic locations, carefully planned for the best light but to aid you in mentally visualizing a scene before capturing the decisive moment. Our aim is to raise your awareness and spark your creativity so that you not only go home with images to be proud of but use your new found skills to improve and expand your photographic technique in general. Apart from the technical aspect of learning your camera settings and capabilities, you will learn how to turn an ordinary image into an extraordinary image by using your own creativity.

In addition, you will become knowledgeable on how to survey the landscape, utilize and approach your environment, photograph people indigenous to the region and the cultural considerations and challenges of photographing in a foreign country. Our time together will include individual and group discussions, inspiring ideas, and great fun. We cannot think of a better location to express your creativity than Mexico City.

Group Size

4 – 6 Guests

Experience | Difficulty

  • Beginner, amateur, enthusiast and semi-pro photographers
  • DSLR, mirrorless, compact or iPhone cameras
  • Moderate schedule
  • Travel by walking, car or minibus
  • Limited elevation changes and lots of walking
  • (non-photographers also welcome)

Weather | Sun

March – Temps 69/54 F  20/12 C  Sunrise 7:13 | Sunset 7:56 (19:56) | Rain – Minimal
August – Temps 74/56 F  23/13 C  Sunrise 7:18 | Sunset 8:04 (18:04) | Rain – Moderate
*The temps in Mexico City remain fairly constant throughout the year thanks to its 7000 ft (2133 m) altitude.

Includes

  • Travel, landscape, architecture, street, and people photography
  • Professional photographer | guide
  • Local Mexican guide
  • Photo walks & discussions
  • Small group size (4 – 6 guests)
  • 4 or 5-star hotels
  • Breakfasts
  • 2 Dinners
  • Local transportation

Travel Information

Arrival & Departure Airport: Aeropuerto Internacional Benito Juárez (MEX) – Transfer to hotel: +/-60 min
Our adventure begins at 10 AM on the first day and ends at noon on the last day.
Travel Visa: A visa may be required depending on your nationality. Go to Visa Map to find out.

Accommodations

Mexico City (Palanco) – W Mexico City, JW Marriott, Hyatt Regency, or similar

Helpful Links

> Graffiti Artists of Mexico – by Michael Chinnici


Photographer Leader

Photographer Leader

Michael Chinnici

March 7 – 14, 2020
August 15 – 22, 2020
March 6 – 13, 2021
August 14 – 21, 2021

*All prices are per person and based on double occupancy. Please select single occupancy for a private room. For your convenience, we offer optional early arrival and late departure accommodations so you can extend your stay before or after the trip. We typically stay in boutique hotels in the 4-star category. Not all destinations offer these types of properties. We look for unique hotels which offer cultural, historic and/or authentic features. Depending on the size of the group, smaller boutique hotels may have limited room inventory. In some countries or in remote locations, we may be limited to lodges or branded chain hotels. Breakfast is included only if included in our room rates.

ITINERARY

MEXICO CITY 8 DAYS

Day 1 | Historic Mexico City - Chapultepec

We begin in the morning at our hotel where we will discuss PWA’s “10 Guiding Principles to Great Photography” as well as our “THE ART OF SEEING” photographic technique. After lunch, we will explore Reforma Avenue, Chapultepec Castle, the Botanical Garden and if time allows the National Anthropology Museum. Paseo de la Reforma is a long and wide avenue that runs diagonally across the city. It is lined with trees and tall modern buildings. It is Mexico’s Champs Elysées. There is a lot to see and do along La Reforma, including the famous Angel de la Independencia. It is especially impressive at night when everything is beautifully illuminated (which we will definitely explore at night, armed with our tripods).

Next, we will explore Mexico City’s Polanco neighborhood. Located just north of Chapultepec Park, glittering Polanco serves as the city’s rich and famous playground. Businessmen, politicians, and social elites sip, dine, and shop along Mexico City’s luxury lane and sleep in its colonial mansions. It’s all fun and games, but unless you’re somebody you should prepare for some challenges—valet parking is obligatory, a dress code is most definitely enforced, reservations are required and, sometimes, the hostess might call you “Mr. Nobody.” Ha! We’ll explore and see.

After a sunset shoot at a surprise location, we will celebrate with a “Welcome Dinner” at one of our favorite restaurants in Mexico City. (D)

Day 2 | Xochimilco - San Angel - Coyoacán

Today we will visit several neighborhoods including the exciting and interesting Xochimilco, San Angel and Coyoacán neighborhoods. Mexicans are culturally very colorful people, so today’s focus will be on musicians, Mexican parties, boats, and street art and graffiti. Coyoacán traditionally has been home for artists, politicians, and intellectuals, it has the ambiance of a province within the city. After seeing La Casa Azul Museum, where Frida Kahlo was born, lived and died, we’ll continue towards downtown Coyoacán, where you’ll be in awe at the San Juan Bautista Church. Then we’ll continue on to Xochimilco to board a Trajinera (a traditional flat-bottomed boat) in a most traditional family gathering activity in Mexico.

A visit to Xochimilco is like stumbling across an oasis in the desert. This eclectic place is set in the middle of a colossal city where you can discover colors your eyes have never seen before. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987, rediscover its colors as you walk down the aisles of its markets full of iris flowers. Float along the walled canals lined with gardens and curtains of trees on brightly painted and decorated trajineras and evoke a time when this watery surrounding dominated the landscape of the Anáhuac. You’ll discover the small artificial islands, called chinampas, which are used to grow flowers, vegetables, and ornamental plants. (B)

Day 3 | La Merced & Sonora Markets

Today’s focus will be on markets, food stalls, churches and people. Mexico City is full of food markets, and most of them are places of wonder. Cleaver-wielding butchers jammed in shoulder-to-shoulder with spice merchants and vegetable-sellers carefully tending their mountains of jewel-like white and purple onions, everyone sharing space with food vendors hawking everything from tamales to tostadas, and more. La Merced is one of the biggest markets in the world. Spanning 53 city blocks, it has sections for household trinkets, foods (groceries and cooked items), pirated DVDs, and more, including the darker side of what people might want to buy. It’s a maze of vendors that is an absolute must-see for anyone who loves markets.

Next we will visit Mercado de Sonora. This place has all the ingredients for Mexican witchcraft. Aisles are crammed with stalls hawking potions, amulets, voodoo dolls and other esoterica. This is also the place for a limpia (spiritual cleansing), a ritual involving clouds of incense and an herbal brushing. Sadly some vendors at the market trade illegally in endangered animals. It’s two blocks south of metro Merced. (B)

Day 4 | Basilica de Guadalupe - Abandoned Sites

Today we will visit the Basilica of Guadalupe, the second most visited Catholic shrine in the world after the Vatican. The Basilica is located on Tepeyac Hill where the Virgin of Guadalupe first appeared to Juan Diego in 1531. After we head to Cine Ópera, which was one of the largest, most grandiose movie theaters in Mexico from its inauguration in 1949, during the Golden Age of Mexican Cinema, until it was shuttered in 1998. Still abandoned, the crumbling facade is a gloomy yet visually stunning testament to the glamorous peak of the country’s film industry.

Historically, Tlatelolco was the main commercial center of the Aztec empire. It was founded around 1337, some 13 years after the founding of Tenochtitlan, the Aztec capital. This is also the site where one of Mexico’s modern tragedies took place: on October 2nd, 1968, Mexican army and police massacred some 300 students who had gathered here to protest the repressive government of president Diaz Ordaz. (B)

Day 5 | Downtown CDMX

Today we will focus on some of downtown Mexico City’s stunning architecture. We begin a day with a visit to the Palace of Fine Arts, Mexico City’s grandest and most important performance space. It is one of the many public buildings begun during the government of Porfirio Díaz, who was in office from 1876 to 1911. The building features murals that were executed by some of Mexico’s finest artists, including Diego Rivera, Jose Clemente Orozco, David Alfaro Siqueiros, and Roberto Montenegro, and houses exhibition halls for sculpture and painting. It is also home to the National Museum of Architecture, and the National Theater. This stunning Art Nouveau masterpiece was envisioned for the centenary celebrations of Mexico’s independence in 1910 and was completed in 1934.

Next, we will explore the Palacio de Correos, the capital’s main post office which dates from the days of President Porfirio Diaz, who inaugurated it in 1907. The design is an eclectic mix of styles, with Moorish, Spanish and Venetian Renaissance, Neoclassical and Art Deco details, all supported by a steel frame that has allowed the building to survive earthquakes and subsidence that have claimed other buildings.

We’ll visit the Metropolitan Cathedral (or Catedral Metropolitana), the first and largest cathedral in the Americas, seat of the Archdiocese of Mexico, and a wonder to behold. It is a symphony in stone, composed over 4 centuries into manifold facades, displaying textbook Neoclassical, Renaissance, and wedding-cake ornate Mexican Baroque (Churrigueresque) styles. Within its fantastic bulk are sheltered some 16 chapels, several altars and retablos, a fine parish church, and a choir, each an inspired work of art replete with gold gilt, fine paintings, and sculptural details. Above it all, 25 bells – measured in tons – ring and sing to the city. Finally, The Torre Latinoamericana (The Latin America Tower), a skyscraper located in downtown Mexico City. Its central location, height, and history makes it one of the city’s most important landmarks. (B)

Day 6 | Roma - La Condesa

On day 6 we focus will be on architecture, hipster bars and restaurants, street art, bookstores, antique shops, people, and earthquake damaged structures. We begin with the Roma neighborhood. Colonia Roma is one of Mexico City’s most famous and popular areas, not least for its hipster tendencies. The hub of the city’s quirky subculture, with restaurants, bars, and museums to match, there are a plethora of things to see and do in this Cuauhtémoc borough neighborhood. Technically divided into two separate colonies – Roma Norte and Roma Sur – it was designated a Barrio Mágico in 2011 and plays host to many art deco mansions.

After lunch, we’ll explore the La Condesa neighborhood. Beloved for its world-class nightlife, Condesa gives posh young Chilangos countless excuses to slip into stilettos or suits. Condesa’s days begin with beautiful people streaming through parks and designer boutiques, pausing to sip lattes al fresco. Its extravagant nights begin once valets take the keys and velvet ropes are pushed aside. Marked by a larger corporate presence than neighboring Roma or Hipódromo, Condesa’s venues might seem all-too-familiar, but the crowd is always fresh. (B)

Day 7 | Teotihuacan - Mexico City

Early in the morning, we’ll head to Teotihuacan for a sunrise shoot. Teotihuacan was the most important city of the classic period of the Meso-American cultures, and today is the most visited archaeological site in the country. We’ll admire the temple of Quetzalcoatl, we’ll climb the Pyramid of the Sun and will walk the Avenue of the Dead. Teotihuacan is a vast Mexican archaeological complex just northeast of Mexico City.

Running down the middle of the site, which was once a flourishing pre-Columbian city, is the Avenue of the Dead. It links the Temple of Quetzalcoatl, the Pyramid of the Moon and the Pyramid of the Sun, the latter two with panoramic views from their summits. Artifacts in the Museum of Teotihuacan Culture, on-site, include pottery and bones. Afterward, we’ll return to a few of our favorite spots over the past week, or give you the free afternoon to rest up or go shopping.

In the evening we celebrate with a wonderful “Farewell Dinner”, Mexico City style. (B) (D)

Day 8 | Mexico City

While at breakfast we have our final discussion, review our best photos from the week, trade contact information, and bid you farewell. Guest who are continuing on our amazing Guatemala Photo Adventure, we will depart for Guatemala after checkout. (B)

 
Add our 8-Day “Guatemala Photo Adventure” before Guatemala for 16 amazing days of culture and photography.

(B) Breakfast, (L) Lunch, (D) Dinner, (E) Excursion

May all who come as guests... leave as friends®

OPTIONS AND BENEFITS

Pricing

 

All prices are per person and based on double occupancy. Please select single occupancy for a private room. For your convenience, we offer optional early arrival and late departure accommodations so you can extend your stay before or after the trip. We typically stay in boutique hotels in the 4-star category. Not all destinations offer these types of properties. We look for unique hotels which offer cultural, historic and/or authentic features. Depending on the size of the group, smaller boutique hotels may have limited room inventory. In some countries or in remote locations, we may be limited to lodges or branded chain hotels. Breakfast is included only if included in our room rates.

Private Guided Adventures

 

We offer amazing private guided photo adventures, cultural tours and vacations for individuals, couples, families and groups. We can customize any of our published adventures, as well as others, to meet your individual needs, schedule, budget and interests. This may include the finest 5-star accommodations, business-class travel, and private guides and fixers who are able to make the impossible possible. If you are not interested in a photo-centric vacation, but you love our approach to private travel, we will be happy to design and deliver an amazing adventure focused on travel, culture and cuisine. Click here to request a quote. Feel free to call us at 1-888-834-0288 or contact us for more information.

 

Travel Insurance

We offer travel insurance through the internationally recognized Travelex Travel Insurance Company, as well as evacuation and medical transportation insurance through MedJet, one of the best in the industry.

The cost for travel insurance can be as low as 4% of the total trip cost, depending upon age and other factors. Knowing you have trip cancellation coverage can make a big difference should you have to cancel for some unforeseen reason. Travelex Insurance Services is a BBB Accredited business with an A+ rating. Click here to learn more about why you should consider travel insurance.

Rewards Program

Start earning points today and SAVE $200 - $900 off future trips!
Simply register for one of our amazing photo adventures and begin earning points today!

How The Program Works
For every adventure reservation you make with Photo Workshop Adventures, you earn valuable points which you can redeem on your next trip. This is a great way to save up to 8% off future trips. Our Rewards Program is designed with three tiers: Orange, Gold and VIP Members. Points may be applied towards balance payments on your next trip, or you may choose to accumulate points for a free trip in the future.

ORANGE REWARDS
All guests begin with our Orange Rewards Program (Level 1), which earns 4 points for every dollar you spend. You begin earning points immediately after your first trip. A $5,900 spend earns 23,600 points with a value of $236 USD.

GOLD REWARDS
With our Gold Rewards Program (Level 2), you earn 6 points for every dollar you spend. Orange Members who reach 120,000 accumulated lifetime* points (approx. 4-6 trips), automatically move up to Gold Rewards. A $5,900 spend earns 35,400 points with a value of $354 USD.

Additional Gold Benefits:

  • Earn up to double points during promotional events
  • Advance notifications for upcoming adventures and special offers

VIP REWARDS
With our VIP Rewards Program (Level 3), you earn 8 points for every dollar you spend. Gold Members who reach 350,000 accumulated lifetime* points (approx. 8-12 trips) move up to VIP Rewards. A $5,900 spend earns 47,200 points with a value of $472 USD, (8+/-% discount).

Additional VIP Benefits:

  • Earn up to double points during promotional events
  • Advance notifications for upcoming adventures and special offers
  • Ability to Gift or Transfer points to others
  • Receive complimentary airport transfers at the destination location*


Redeeming Your Points

Redeeming your points couldn’t be easier. You can always log in to your account to check your points balance. When you are ready to book your next trip, register and pay your deposit. When you go to pay your balance you will be given the option to apply your points and receive a discount.

THINK ORANGE Magazine

Subscribe to our Think Orange Magazine and eNews. THINK ORANGE is a wonderful mix of stories and tips related to travel, photography, adventure, culture, art, technology, cuisine, lifestyle, people and more. Our objective is to immerse you in a world you may only fantasize about. Raise your awareness and inspire your creativity. Perhaps even help make you a better photographer. We deliver similar experiential experiences that our guests enjoy on our photo adventures. Like all of our adventures, our blog is “photo-centric”, while also allowing you to experience all the nuances and cultural aspects of travel and adventure. Welcome to our world. We hope you enjoy. Our eNews is a great way to receive information about upcoming photo adventures, exciting new destinations, photography tips, special offers and more. Subscribe today!

Gift Cards

Give someone you know a Gift Card, good toward any of our Photo  Adventures, Photo Tours, Private Guided Tours, Online Courses, Prints or Merchandize. Our beautifully personalized eGift Cards and Certificates are delivered to you electronically. They are fully transferable and have a 2 year expiration date. They are available in any amount from $100 to $5000. It makes a great gift for anyone who loves photography, travel or adventure. Order now, or email for more information.

Combine-N-Save

You can SAVE up to $1200 by combining two or more back-to-back 6-Day or longer Photo Adventures. Call us at 1-888-834-0288 or contact us for more information.

Private Online Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials

We offer private online Lightroom and Photoshop photo editing tutorials for individuals who would like to improve their post-processing skills. Each is customized to meet your individual needs, schedule, budget and interests. We provide you with one-on-one discussions using online connectivity. Many of our Photo Adventure guests select our online post-processing as an extension to their trip. Click here for more information.