The Mountains of Guerrero:
Crafts & Laquerware Concurso in Olinala
September 29-October 7, 2024 (8 Nights)
$2,785 per person, double occupancy
Join us on a journey to learn about the art of the “maque”, lacquerware of Guerrero, one of three regions of Mexico that continues this ancient tradition. Guerrero is home to the maque tradition, namely the “cajitas” little boxes of Olinala. The tradition of lacquerware or “maque” is pre-hispanic in origin, originally applied to gourds to protect them from cracking and breaking. Later, this tradition and technique became fused with other influences in aesthetics and applications, namely from Asia and Europe. Today, the maque is applied to boxes, chests, screens, gourds and other decorative items. On this trip we’ll learn about this ancient art form, as well as other emblematic crafts of Guerrero, including embroidered and woven textiles, pottery and basket weaving
Pre Arrival: You might want to arrive one night early in Acapulco, September 28, Private Pools at Hotel and Private Beach Club of Hotel Las Brisas, are lot’s of fun.
Day One, Friday, September 29: Arrive Acapulco (ACA), Overnight Acapulco
Our “port” of arrival is Acapulco! Arriving, you will take the airport cab to our wonderful and nostalgic hotel, Las Brisas, known for their pink jeeps, and hotel to the stars! We’ll meet in the Hotel Lobby at 5:30 p.m,, to depart and enjoy a beautiful sunset Welcome Dinner at Zibu, overlooking one of the famed Bays of Acapulco. (Dinner included). Hotel Las Brisas
Day Two, Saturday, September 30: Tour Acapulco transfer to Chilpancingo, Overnight Chilpancingo
Today, we’ll visit highlights of Acapulco; namely Acapulco of yesteryear, of the Golden Age of Cinema, where this was the playground of the stars. We’ll visit important highlights of the city on the Pacific, enjoy lunch on the beach (not included), before we head off to the Capital of Guerrero, Chilpancingo, where we’ll overnight. Hotel Holiday Inn Express Chilpancingo. (B, Breakfast included)
Day Three, Sunday, October 1: Chilapa, Sunday Market, Overnight Tlapa de Comonfort
Timing our trip to be in Chilapa on a Sunday, we’ll visit the famed Sunday tianguis market of this important crossroads town of Guerrero. Here, the baskets, gourds, petate mats and all things Guerrero that are sold all over Mexico…this is where they come from!
Then we’ll meet with our award-winning weaver and embroiderer friend, Edgar, who will escort us to the town of Acatlan. Here, we’ll visit with the Acateca women, artisans to learn about the famed “Acateca” dress, a beautiful ensemble of flowers and indigo stripes. We’ll enjoy a demo, and expo and lunch with the artisans, before saying good-by. Our next stop and overnight is in Tlapa de Comonfort, the doorway to the stunning region; The Mixtecos de la Montana. We’ll be met by weavers from Cochoapan el Grande and Metlatonoc, very remote areas in the mountains, and known as some of the finest weavings of Mexico. Overnight in Tlapa. (B, L Included)
Day Four, October 2: Tlapa de Comonfort to Olinala, Concurso de Olinala! Visit lacquerware workshops and visit the Juried Art Fair. Overnight Olinala
Today, we will drive to Olinala, home of the famed lacquerware, “Cajitas de Olinala”. We’ll meet with artisans who will demonstrate the main techniques (rayado vaciado, etched and scored) and the decorado and punteado, painted styles). We’ll also attend the annual Concurso, Juried Art Fair, where we will see the finest examples of the lacquerware craft of Olinala. Prepare to be overwhelmed by the beauty and skilled craftmanship. We’ll overnight in Olinala. (B, L, Breakfast and Lunch included)
Day Five, October 3: San Francisco de Assisi, Patron Saint Day Festivities in the town of Olinala. More tigers that you have ever seen! Overnight Olinala
Today we will enjoy a free day (but still together), because we’ll be in the middle of the Patron Saint Festivities, honoring San Francisco. We’ll view, observe some of the formal ritual associated with this Festival, as well as dance in the streets (or observe from the sidelines) as many tecuanes, tigers take to the streets in their fun ritual and celebration. (B, Breakfast is included today)
Day Six, October 4: Temalacatzingo-Izucar de Matamoros-Atlixco
Today we’ll travel through the glorious mountain region, as we go to Temalacatzingo, home to lacquerware toys, gourds and all things “laca” we will meet with some of our artisan friends there, and hopefully include some wonderful pieces to our laca collections. From here, we travel to Izucar de Matamoros, one of the most important places (aside from Metepec), where the famed “arboles de la vida”, of the ceramica policromado tradition are made. From here, we’ll go to Atlixco, a very charming town at the foothills of Popocatepetl. Overnight Atlixco
Day Seven, October 5: Atlixco and Cholula
Atlixco is a fascinating and beautiful town at the foothills of Popocatepetl Volcano. It is very lush and verdant, a deep Colonial past, and one of our favorite markets in Mexico is here. We’ll try the specialty, cecina, thin cured beef…in tacos with fresh tortillas, lime and cilantro…it doesn’t get any better. After our morning enjoying Atlixco, we’ll take a side trip to Cholula to visit our favorite Talavera Workshop. Overnight Atlixco
Day Eight, October 6: Puebla City, Overnight Puebla
Today we’ll explore some of our favorite places in Puebla, including the Museo Amparo, Centro Historico, and a favorite meal of the famed pipian and mole dishes.
Day Nine, October 7: Transfer to MEX