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Oaxaca, the capital city of the southern Mexican state of the same name, contains a fabulous wealth of pre-colonial heritage sites, as well as colonial and contemporary architecture. Aside from its historical treasures, the city is also known for its cobbled streets, shaded squares, colonial churches and busy markets. Oaxaca has some outstanding restaurants, cafés and bars, together with top-notch museums and art galleries. Nearby are charming colonial towns and some of the finest Mesoamerican architecture where the Zapotecs (the original inhabitants of Oaxaca) once made their homes.

Pre Conference Tour

Extend your experience before joining the main conference group - join the optional pre conference tour.

Day 1

DALLAS

Depart Australia and fly to Dallas. Stay overnight in the Dallas Airport Hotel

Day 2

OAXACA B

Fly to Oaxaca via Mexico City and transfer to your gorgeous colonial hotel.

This evening join fellow delegates for a Welcome Cocktail Party at the hotel.

Day 3

OAXACA B

Morning conference session.

This afternoon take an introductory walking tour of Oaxaca’s cultural and historical heritage.  Enjoy the bustle of the Zocalo (central square) shaded by tall trees and surrounded by elegant arcades. Admire the marble State Government Palace and its intricate mural depicting Oaxacan history. Visit the city’s most splendid church, Templo de Santo Domingo, with its intricately carved baroque façade and over-the-top gilt designs inside. Your walk will include stops at markets, food stalls and chocolate makers to sample famous Oaxacan delicacies – like roasted grasshoppers, served with chili, garlic, salt and lime juice! Cleanse your palate (and set your gut on fire) with a Mezcal tasting. Mezcal is a spirit made from the agave plant, held in spiritual reverence by the locals.

Your evening is free to try one of the many wonderful restaurants in town and enjoy the ambience of people eating, drinking, and often singing and dancing.

Day 4

OAXACA B

This morning drive a short distance out of Oaxaca to visit Tlacolula Sunday markets. Throngs of buyers and sellers are packed around the Capilla del Santo Cristo church. Local craft, cooked foods and everyday goods are on sale. It is a fabulous atmosphere! Peek inside the church and you will be awed by the golden indigenous-inspired decorations. Don’t miss the martyrs carrying their own heads.

Visit the prehistoric caves, which have yielded evidence of the earliest plant domestication in North America and paintings more than 10,000 years old.

Afternoon conference session.

Evening free for you to explore on your own. Many galleries and museums stay open until 8pm.

Day 5

OAXACA B,L

Today enjoy a full-day tour. Visit Monte Alban, one of Mexico’s most spectacular archaeological sites standing on a flattened hilltop. Inhabited over a period of 1,500 years by a succession of peoples – Olmecs, Zapotecs and Mixtecs – the site is known for its unique dimensions, which exhibit the basic chronology and artistic style of the region. Wander through the remains of magnificent temples, ball courts, tombs and bas-reliefs with hieroglyphic inscriptions. Admire the main part of the ceremonial centre, which forms a 300-metre esplanade running north-south with a platform at either end.

Next visit the small town of San Bartolo Coyotepec and learn how the local traditional black pottery, famous for its colour, sheen, unique shapes and decorative designs is made.

After a traditional lunch soak your weary bones in the thermal springs of Hierve el Agua which afford spectacular views of the surrounding peaks, including the famous ‘petrified waterfalls’, sparkling stalactite cliffs created from the mineral content in the springs. Take a short walk past an ancient Zapotec irrigation system and down to the bubbling source of the spring. Stand at the edge of this buttress of stalactites for a dramatic view of the pools and valleys below.

Return to Oaxaca and try some of its world famous restaurants.

Day 6

OAXACA B

Morning conference session.

This afternoon participate in a visit to a local hospital to share knowledge with colleagues.

Day 7

OAXACA B,D

Morning conference session.

The afternoon is free for you to take an optional tour out of town, check out those last few museums and galleries or finish off your shopping.

Tonight join colleagues for a fantastic Farewell Dinner – don’t forget your camera.

Day 8

B

Begin your homeward journey. Fly via Mexico City to Dallas and stay overnight (with late check-out)

Day 9

Depart Dallas in the evening arriving in Sydney on Sunday 3 November.

OR join the optional post conference tour to experience the Day of the Dead and round off your Mexican experience.

Post Conference Tour

Continue your experience before returning to Australia - join the optional post conference tour.



End of arrangements. Please note this program may be subject to change

Dr Gary Kilov (1:42)
Dr Asha Nair (1:31)
Dr Ralph Audehm (1:11)
Dr Diana Hart & Dr Roger Scurr (1:39)