Earth Ancients

Mexico 2023

Mexico Tour 2023

The Ancient Maya of Chiapas and Tabasco

An Earth Ancients Tour Hosted by Cliff Dunning

November 10 – 17, 2023

Led by Dr. Ed Barnhart

This one week learning adventure will visit five important ancient Maya cities during the temperate month of November. Flights will go in and out of Villahermosa, Tabasco, a short 90 minutes from Palenque by land. After an overnight in Villahermosa and a stroll through the Olmec heads at La Venta Park, the next two days will be dedicated to Palenque and its onsite museum. Day 4 will bring the group to the wonderful murals of Bonampak, the Golondrinas waterfalls for a picnic, and the remote, virtually unexcavated pyramids of Plan de Ayutla. On day 5, the group will travel up the Usumacinta River by boat to visit the mist-shrouded temples of Yaxchilan. Heading back to Palenque that night, early morning transport the next day will bring the group back towards Villahermosa and a bit beyond to the ancient Maya world’s westernmost city – Comalcalco. They’ll explore the ruins that morning and tour a cacao plantation in the afternoon. A final group dinner back in Villahermosa will bring the adventure to a celebratory close.

The leader for this educational travel program will be archaeologist Dr. Edwin Barnhart.



Nov 10, Friday: Arrival

Evening: Arrival to Villahermosa airport and taxi to the hotel
Overnight at the Hotel Cencali


Nov 11, Saturday: La Venta Park

7-8am: Breakfast at hotel
8-8:30am: Walk to La Venta Park (Olmec)
9-12pm: Exploring La Venta Park
12-2pm: Lunch and hotel check out
2-4pm: Transport to Palenque
6-7pm: Lecture: Palenque’s Dynasty
7-8pm: Dinner together at hotel
Overnight at Hotel Maya Tulipanes

Mexico Tour 2023


Nov 12, Sunday: Central Palenque

7-8am: Breakfast at hotel
8-12am: Tour of Palenque
12-2pm: Lunch at Don Muchos
2-4pm: Palenque museum
6-7pm: Lecture: Tomb of Pakal
Overnight at Hotel Maya Tulipanes

Mexico Tour 2023


Nov 13, Monday: Outer Palenque

7-8am: Breakfast at hotel
8-11am: Tour of Palenque’s western ruins
11-1pm: Lunch at Don Muchos
1-4pm: Palenque’s eastern ruins
Evening: Free time
Overnight at Hotel Maya Tulipanes

Mexico Tour 2023


Nov 14, Tuesday: Bonampak

6am: Depart hotel
7-7:30am: Breakfast at Valle Escondido
9-12pm: Tour of Bonampak
1-2pm: Picnic at Golondrinas waterfalls
2-4pm: Ruins of Plan de Ayutla
4-5pm: Transport to Frontera Corozal
6-8pm: Group dinner at the hotel
Overnight at the Escudo Jaguar Hotel

Mexico Tour 2023


Nov 15, Wednesday: Yaxchilan

7-8am: Breakfast and check out
8-9am: Boat to Yaxchilan
9-1pm: Tour of Yaxchilan
3-4pm: Late lunch at museum
4-6pm: Transport to Palenque
Overnight at Hotel Maya Tulipanes

Mexico Tour 2023


Nov 16, Thursday: Comalcalco

7-9am: Breakfast and hotel check out
9-11am: Transport to Comalcalco
11-12pm: Tour of Comalcalco
12-2pm: Lunch at a mole restaurant
2-3pm: Hacienda Luz Cacao Plantation
3-4pm: Transport to Villahermosa
7-9pm: Final dinner party together
Overnight at Hotel Cencali

Mexico Tour 2023


Nov 17, Sunday: Departures

Morning TBD: Transport to Villahermosa airport
Morning TBD: Flights home



Palenque: Hotel Maya Tulipanes
AC, cable TV, wifi, onsite restaurant – located in the La Canada neighborhood where the code of Maya hieroglyphics was cracked in 1973

Frontera Corozal: Escudo Jaguar
Cabanas with fans, private bath, mosquito nets, onsite restaurant, and wifi – located on the shore of the Usumacinta River. The finest hotel in town!

Villahermosa: Cencali Hotel
AC, private bath, onsite restaurant, telephone, cable TV, wifi – located in the heart of Villahermosa and one of the city’s most established hotels



$2,700 per person

(This price is based on double occupancy lodging. Add $400 for a private single room.)

$500 deposit due upon registration.
50% balance due 90 days before the trip.
Final balance due at 30 days prior to trip.



  • All lodging
  • Private ground transportation
  • River boat transport to Yaxchilan
  • Breakfasts
  • Lunches
  • Two dinners (at Escudo Jaguar and the final evening)
  • Archaeologist guide
  • Evening Lectures
  • All entry fees
  • Bottles of cold purified water in the transport


  • Airfare to/from Villahermosa
  • Five dinners on your own
  • Gratuities (maids, drivers, guides, etc.)
  • Travel Insurance (recommended)


About Your Hosts

Cliff Dunning

Cliff Dunning

Cliff Dunning is the host and producer of the popular podcast, Earth Ancients: Startling New Discoveries from Our Planets Distant Past. He is also a writer, his articles appear in various publications around the world.

Dr. Ed Barnhart

Dr. Ed Barnhart

Dr. Ed Barnhart is an American archaeologist and explorer specializing in ancient civilizations of the Americas. He is the founder and Director of the Maya Exploration Center, President of Ancient Explorations and fellow of The Explorers Club. He has appeared on the History Channel, Discovery Channel and Japanese public television. He also produced four lecture series for the Teaching Company’s Great Courses and has a podcast called ArchaeoEd.



To reserve your place visit the Registration page at MEC Tours to arrange your Deposit:

Click Here to Register