Cristo Rey Pilgrimage riding holiday in Mexico - Far and Ride
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Cristo Rey Pilgrimage, Mexico




Programme


• Cristo Rey Pilgrimage

 

Horses



Type of horses:

Aztec, Quarter Horse, Mexican Creole

Nature of horses:

Forward going, surefooted.

Height of horses:

Weight limit:

110 kg

Tack type:

Mexican & Western

 

Travel Advice



Please ensure you read the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice before you travel.
 

Ride Description

Our partner Ángel,is a skilled horseman and knowledgeable guide who trains his horses to be sure-footed and happy. He has great experience of trail riding in Mexico. He has now created a programme called the Cristo Rey Pilgrimage Cavalvade. This is an opportunity to join in a tradition going back more than half a century ago, which gathers “thousands” of Mexican riders at the foot of the monument to Christ the King, on the hill of Cubilete. which is considered to be the geographical centre of Mexico. This tradition and the Cristero War inspired Holly wood to make a film "Cristeros".

In 2020 around 3,500 Mexican riders are expected to attend. They will come from the forty six municipalities of the state of Guanajuato and the other parts of Mexico such as Querétaro, Aguascalaientes and San Luis Potosí. These riders meet every year in the month of January as a sign of faith and devotion to a tradition of equestrian pilgrimage. This tradition has now begun to attract the attention from riders all over the world. This is an opportunity to join in this wonderful cavalcade.

Other riders will depart from different parts of central Mexico to join the magnificent group of riders in La Ermita del Cubilite. You will share with them their traditions, their gastronomy, their music and their beliefs, on horseback though the rural roads, mountains and villages.

See Programmes.

 

Food & Accommodation

Local Haciendas and camping

Local Mexican food. Vegetarians can be accommodated with prior notice.

 

Activities

Not suitable for non riders

 

Further Details

Languages: Spanish, English

Health requirements: Fit and healthy

Age limit: Aged 14 upwards but 14-18 years old need signed letter from guardian

Tuition: No

Included: Back up vehicle, saddlebags, natural and fresh water

Not included: Airport Transfers, alcoholic drinks, entrance to museums, sleeping bag

 

Travel Information

Flights are to Guanajuato. A taxi from the airport to the hotel is around £20.

Airport: Guanajuato International Airport

 

Programme


Cristo Rey Pilgrimage



Itinerary - Please note this may change due to local circumstances. This is an adventure programme directly linked to the pilgrimage organisation and for that reason some changes maybe out of Angel's control regarding accommodation and logistics. 

Day One: Friday 3 January

The meeting point will be at 15.00 hours in the city of León Guanajuato, in the lobby of the Hotsson hotel. From there you will be transferred to a former Jesuit Hacienda located between the mountainous area of Sierra de Lobos. This comprises of 2650 hectares of beautiful landscape with more than three million native oak trees of the region. Some are over 500 years old.  Here you will enjoy a rich welcome  dinner and a comfortable bed for the night.

Dinner included

Day Two: Saturday 4 January

After a delicious breakfast at the Hacienda, you will be transferred to El Torreón where the horses await you.  From here you will join the the group of riders who are departing in the direction of Nuevo Valle de Moreno. This day you will ride for 8 hours through ancient roads in the mountainous area of Santa Barbara, accompanied by a contingent of Mexican riders until you reach the Nuevo Valle de Moreno where you will stay overnight. Accommodation is at Rancho la Trinidad (or similar).

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

Day Three: Sunday 5 January

After a typical Mexican breakfast at Rancho la Trinidad, you will continue your day on horseback from the village of Nuevo Valle de Moreno to the hill of the "Cubilete". On the journey you will be joined by many more riders from different communities and villages around to concentrate on La Ermita, where you will spend the whole night before the celebration. This day you will spend approximately 6 hours in the the saddle and you will eventually reach the hill of Cubilete, considered the geographical centre of Mexico.  Accommodation tonight will be at "Hacienda Jesús Maria" or similar.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included.

Day Four: Monday 6 January

After a delicious breakfast at the hacienda, you will attend the celebration of Holy Mass on horseback with the presence of the Archbishop and with more than 2,500 horses and riders. Today you will spend much of the day enjoying the traditions and sharing the culture with the riders from different parts of Mexico, as well as from difference countries.  You will visit Sangre de Cristo and the Jesus Maria vineyards. Accommodation will be the same as yesterday.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included.

Day Five: Tuesday 7 January

After breakfast in the hacienda and having concluded the pilgrimage together with local riders, you will continue in Angel's group enjoying the private group adventure starting from the Jesus Maris Hacienda taking you to the Cuenca de la Esperanza.

The journey on horseback takes you through what is known as the "The Mystery Villages".  It is about three old communities where you will see the history of firstly, the Chichimeca indigenous people, secondly the Cristero region (the old Cristero War) that has inspired Hollywood and lastly silver mining. The communities are Sangre de Cristo, Mineral de la Luz  and San Ignacio. These three communities are the oldest in the state of Guanajuato and are of great historical and cultural value. This was one of the most prosperous mining enclaves in the region. Even in the 19th century, the inhabitants of the area were in the thousands and had, for example, their own bullring, tobacco factory and profitable farms. At the end the 19th century, the three villages became ghost towns. In 1929 this territory was reincorporated into the municipality of Guanajuato and today has about only 300 inhabitants. You will ride for about 6 hours today.

Accommodation is at "Hotel Casa Grande" or similar.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included.

Day Six: Wednesday 8 January

After a delicious breakfast in the hotel, you will continue to ride your horses in the direction of "El Varal", a nature reserve that is a location in the north of the state of Guanajuato.  It adjoins the rural communities of Joya de Lobos, Santa Rosa, La Concepción and Los Mexicans. The Encino Forest has many native species including the Madroño and Pinguica.  It is also a natural habitat for mammals such as the white-tailed deer, wildcat, cacomixtle (ring tailed cat), skunk and long nosed bat. There are also over 170 species of birds including Coopers's hawk, the peregrine falcon and the cuckold owl. Today's journey takes you to the valley of the blue birds, where you will set up camp and enjoy the night camping in this magnificent setting. It is a true natural paradise where you will have the opportunity to enjoy a safari style camp and where you can enjoy the a night of ranchera barbecue, campfire and guitars.  Accommodation is camping.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.

Day Seven: Thursday 9 January

After breakfast in the camp accompanied by the singing of birds and the spectacular view of the magnificent natural setting, you will continue on your last day on horseback to the rural community of Rincón de Ortega. You will ride besides the spring's ancient path which borders a mountainous area and passes through a cavern that houses a spring of crystalline water which filters through the Peregrina mountains. You will continue ascending through natural landscapes of the forest and which is home to hundreds of animal species, such as the puma, the coyote, raccoons, armadillo and many others. You will eventually reach Rincón de Ortega where your adventure on horseback ends.  Accommodation tonight is at Ranch la Mesa.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

Day Eight: Friday 10 January

After breakfast at the ranch you will be transferred to the city of León Guanajuato considered to be the capital of shoes and leather in Mexico. You will visit the historical city of León and the leather market. You will be able to find all sorts of leather products and a large variety of shoes. Of course, there will be Mexican saddles, tack as well as charro outfits. You will enjoy a fantastic farewell dinner and you will be taken to a traditional cantina, where you can enjoy Mariachi music and an authentic Mexican party. Accommodation is at the Hotel Ramada Plaza Leon**** or similar.

Breakfast, farewell dinner included.

Day Nine: Saturday 11 January

Enjoy your last breakfast at the hotel



Minimum group size: 10
Maximum group size: 14
Ability description: Experienced and fit
Type of ride: Trail
Total riding time: Long hours in the saddle
Departure dates: 3-11 January 2020
 
Pricing: Price per person £2307
Single Supplement £366 available only on days 1,3,4,5 and 8

Note: All programmes and itineraries are weather dependent; in the face of adverse, or unexpected, weather conditions reasonable attempts will be made to provide equivalent riding.

All programmes are accurate at the time of writing. However, the team may adapt or modify details, whilst aiming to provide a similar experience.