Excursions to communities

Excursions that Transcend, excursion to the community of Yochib.
Rural Tourism
Rural Tourism has become popular in the past years, emerging as an alternative to typical tourist destinations, such as beaches or big, popular cities. Rural Tourism is very similar to ecotourism. It consists in offering diverse activities in rural zones. The tourist gets the opportunity to participate in agricultural activities or the elaboration of local products. Furthermore, they can even join the locals while they cook, enabling close interaction.
Unlike traditional tourism, Rural Tourism takes place in small communities and the activities contribute to the socio-economic development of the region, because the profits are distributed more equitably among the different social sectors. Additionally, the visitors get to enjoy the rural environment and to connect themselves with the local flora and fauna, within the serene ambiance that characterizes these landscapes.

Excursions that Transcend
The purpose of our excursions is to offer an alternative tourism experience of the Chiapas Highland in Mexico, by traveling to the community of Yochib in the municipality of Oxchuc. This community is located 43 km (27 mi) away from San Cristobal de las Casas with an approximate travel time of 1 hour, 30 minutes.

In Yochib, 85% of the adult population speak the indigenous tongue: Tzeltal. Their population is composed by women and men, equitably, and its people are welcoming and charming.
Furthermore, the town has an elementary school, a middle school and a public medical facility.

In the community, corn, coffee, beans and some fruits and vegetables of the basic food basket are produced. The main craft is backstrap loom weaving, an ancient technique to produce beautiful textiles. It is traditionally used by women; some of the products that are made through this craftsmanship are huipils (traditional garment), scarves, table runners, pillow covers and handbags.

The main diet consists of beans, coffee, eggs and products derived from maize, such as tortillas and pozol (a thick drink made of corn and cocoa).

During the visit, the excursionist will be able to discover:

• The modus vivendi of the community.
• The production process of the crafts created in the community.
• Live the culture and traditions of the community.
• The planting methods and harvesting of products.
• The coexistence with nature.
• An intimate encounter with the people of the community.

All of the above creates new and valuable experiences for both the visitor and the society that encompasses the local community.
You will be able to participate in the agricultural and weaving activities, visit the river and enjoy the festivities and cultural traditions.

NOTE: The activities above depend on the time of year and the climate.
Profile of the Excursionist
The trip is designed for the people interested in living new experiences by approaching rural indigenous communities. The excursionist must be aware that the visits to the communities may lack some basic needs and thus, should be able to adapt him or herself to the environment and to what the communities offer.
The main objective of this excursion is to offer the tourist the experience of living in a totally different environment from what he or she is accustomed to.
The excursion is made once a month, on Thursdays, subject to meeting the required 8 excursionists per trip:

1Meeting place: Outside Huellas que Trascienden’s office.
2Duration: Approximately 8 hours, with a guide during the whole excursion.
3Suggested price: More information at our organization. The price covers the following: round trip transportation, a snack (in Yochib), water, the guide (additional tips are welcome), visits to natural sites and Tenejapa. Moreover, besides covering the expenses of the excursion, the money collected contributes to help the organization to continue to provide funds for the women who participate in our program.
4Departure:At 8h00, every Thursday (8 excursionists are required to book a trip). We will arrive to Tenejapa at approximately 8h45 and we will make a short stop to see the main square and church, as well as the marketplace. Then, we will continue our trip until our arrival to Yochib, located approximately 45 minutes away from Tenejapa.
4Arrival: We will be received in Yochib by some locals to welcome us, and receive a brief explanation of the community’s activities and what we will be doing during our visit. We will be given recommendations.
5Snack:Upon arrival, we will be given a snack in one of the participant’s home. Feel free to contribute with anything if you feel like doing so.
5Visit to natural site: If appropriate climate conditions are met, it will be possible to visit the river. It takes a 30-minute walk to reach the river; throughout the road, the tourist will be able to be among the local flora and fauna, seeing coffee and corn plantations, among other crops. If the weather permits it, we will be able to swim and walk along the river.
5Lunch: After our walk, we will visit a home in the community to have lunch. There will be a typical dish (beans, eggs, tortillas, chicken broth, etc. depending on the family). We will then be able to observe and participate in the making of the backstrap loom weaving. Sharing this experience with the locals will be one of the highlights of the trip. Take cash so you can buy the products they will have for sale.
5Return: 16h00.
5Arrival to San Cristobal de las Casas at approximately 17h30.

Wear comfortable clothes and be sure to be prepared for any type of weather, be it sun or rain. The weather is unpredictable. It can change very fast and is very different from the one in San Cristobal. Be very respectful, take pictures only of the people that will be with us and after asking for permission. The food that will be offered consists of beans, eggs, tortillas, coffee, vegetables which are part of their daily diet. It is hard to find a toilet, so be prepared. There is no mobile signal but there is a landline in the guide’s home in case it is needed. Have an open mind to new ways of living. ENJOY!

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