RUNNING, CULTURE AND WELLNESS RETREAT
Join us for a life-changing week of outstanding mountain running, yoga, meditation, traditional mexican cuisine, human connection, nature and ancestral medicine, as we enjoy the very best of Oaxaca's cultural and culinary heritage and embark on an epic running adventure that will take us deep into the mountanious landscapes of the Sierra Norte.
9 days & 8 nights ALL inclusive.
* Secure your spot with $800 USD
* 3 - 6 monthly installments available
Not your typical running retreat.
The first days of the retreat will be spent in the city of Oaxaca, a UNESCO World Heritage site that represents a cultural tradition of more than four centuries of art, architecture and history. Here you will have the chance to explore one of the most beautiful cities in Mexico on foot, while engaging in key cultural experiences that will surely feed your soul and quench your thirst for new knowledge and discovery.
Later into the trip, a stunning adventure into the Sierra Norte will take us to connect with the people, places and traditions from the Pueblos Mancomunados (Commonwealth Towns), a group of Zapotec communities that chose to establish their own unique socio-economical system in order to make a living sustained by trade, sustainability and ecology. You will run on the ancient trails of an original Zapotec route used over thousands of years for trade and commerce between the Gulf of Mexico and the central valleys of Oaxaca.
Each day will be accompanied by yoga and meditation sessions led by one of our top yoga and meditation teachers, who will take us on a spiritual journey of inner peace and self-knowledge throughout and beyond the adventure.
OAXACA's CULTURAL & CULINARY HERITAGE
The state of Oaxaca is regarded worldwide as one of the best culturally preserved and most stunning places in Mexico due to the large variety of indigenous cultures that live in its vast and varied landscapes, and the degree to which their ancient traditions, knowledge, crafts and cuisine have been protected and kept alive.
Lying in the Central Valley of Oaxaca, the city has been inhabited for thousands of years and was a very important site for southern Mexico's pre-Columbian civilizations. Monte Alban, Mitla and other surrounding archeological sites, are proof of the importance of this region for ancient civilizations. We will explore its colorful streets, visit the houses and studios of its top craftsmen and dive into the kitchens of some of its top and most authentic food spots.
Inscribed in 2010 on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO, traditional Mexican cuisine has a lot to owe to Oaxacan dishes and their ingredients. Oaxaca's longstanding culinary tradition has a series of ancestral techniques and mystical regional ingredients at its core.
While in the city you will be able to witness the movement that is revolutionizing Mexican cuisine. In the Sierra you will eat and dine with the locals, where you will be able to take in and learn about the regions cuisine and fresh local ingredients.
During our stay in Oaxaca City we will do 2 runs. The first one will take us on a 10km tour of the city, taking us deep into its streets, markets and churches. The second run (8km), will depart from the church of Santo Domingo in the city center and take us to the top of El Fortín Natural Reservoir from where we will enjoy views of the whole city, the 3 valleys and Monte Alban.
Once we make it to the mountains (2,800 MAMSL) on the second part of the retreat, we will run on the ancient trails that connect the different communities within the commonwealth towns. These trails have been part of a Zapotec trade and commerce route for thousands of years and will take us through some of the most interesting routes and breathtaking views that this region has to offer.
The average daily distance is 20 to 25 kilometers with stops for food and rest. We will run from one community to another, eating and sleeping in a different town each day.
Our vans will take care of your luggage so you can unplug and enjoy the runs.
All of our trips are designed to welcome hikers and runners of all fitness levels. We will assign different guides to groups of different levels so that no one is left behind. You will feel safe and comfortable throughout the trip whether you're a professional runner that wants to add these runs to your training, an amateur who wants to explore the world of trail-running or a casual hiker who wishes to challenge him- or herself while enjoying nature in a secure environment.
SPIRITUALITY, WELLNESS & ANCESTRAL MEDICINE
We believe in recognizing ancestral wisdom and spirituality as a source of valuable knowledge and good living, as well as in the constant practice of physical activity as a way to reconnect to our bodies and to our higher selves.
Taking advantage of Mexico's millenary traditions of ancestral medicine, you will be invited to take part in sweat lodge and cleansing rituals that will purify your body, deepen your bond with the earth and promote the awakening of your ancestral memory.
Our guides, local medicine men and spiritual teachers will make sure that this life changing experience transcends running, allowing us to dive deeply into the region's history and set out on a journey of awareness and self discovery.
COMMUNITY & HUMAN CONNECTION
Our trips are made for you to get away from your daily routine and step out of your comfort zone in order to reconnect spiritually with your inner self while making new friends in a community of like minded people. We invite adventurers from all over the world and from all different backgrounds. This will give you the opportunity to bond and enjoy the company of others, to expand your network and connect with people in an open, friendly and conscious environment.
Meet your yoga guide:
Alex Dickinson began practicing yoga in his mid-teens, after feeling drawn to the studio in his small hometown outside of Seattle. It was a natural complement to the trail running he picked up at the same time. After running cross country at the University of Portland, Alex began practicing even more devotedly. He underwent teacher training in New York City under the guidance of Jean-Marie Paolillo and Elizabeth Neuse. Since then, he's taught both meditation and a yoga practice with a range of influences, while continuing to race distances from 5k to the half marathon.
ARRIVAL IN OAXACA CITY
Shuttle from the airport to Hotel / Boutique Hotel Check In / Welcome Dinner at Zandunga
* We suggest booking flights that arrive in Oaxaca City no later than 6pm. If your flight arrives later we can make personal arrangements *
OAXACA CITY / TLACOLULA MARKET
10 km Oaxaca City Sightseeing Run / Breakfast at Itanoni / Tlacolula Market /Lunch / Free Time in Oaxaca City / Dinner at La Teca
OAXACA CITY / ATZOMPA / MERCADO 20 DE NOV
Meditation and Yoga Session / Breakfast / Visit the house of a Clay Artist / Lunch at Mercado 20 de Noviembre / Free Time / Dinner at Criollo
OAX CITY - TEOTITLAN DEL VALLE
8 km Oaxaca City - El Fortín Run / Breakfast / Free Time / Mezcal Palenque / Lunch at Palenque / Teotitlan del Valle / Dinner at Doña Leo's House
TEOTITLAN DEL VALLE - LLANO GRANDE
Meditation and Yoga Sesion / Breakfast at the House / Textile Workshop with Doña Leo / Lunch at the House / Visit Textile Market / Fiesta de la Preciosa Sangre / Drive to the Mountains / Arrival at Llano Grande / Dinner at Llano Grande
LLANO GRANDE / CUAJIMOLOYAS / LATUVI
Meditation / 8.2 km run to Cuajimoloyas / Breakfast at Cuajimoloyas / 16km Run to Latuvi / Lunch at Latuvi / Free Time / Local Activities / Sunset Yoga / Dinner
LATUVI - LACHATAO - AMATLÁN
Meditation / Breakfast / 16km run to Lachatao / Lunch in Lachatao / Free Time / Temazcal / Dinner in Amatlán
AMATLÁN - LATUVI - LA NEVERÍA - BENITO JUAREZ
Meditation / Shuttle to Latuvi / Breakfast /10km run to La Nevería / Lunch / 8.2km run to Benito Juarez /Farewell Dinner Benito Juarez
BENITO JUÁREZ - OAXACA CITY - OAXACA INTL. AIRPORT
Meditation and Yoga Session / Breakfast / Shuttle to Oaxaca City / Shuttles to Airport
* Flights should depart Oaxaca Intl. Airport after 2pm *
Transportation throughout the whole experience.
Authentic traditional Oaxacan cuisine cooked by locals.
Visits to Oaxaca's most beautiful markets.
Visit the house and studio one of Oaxaca's top Clay artists.
Stay at the house of a family of traditional weavers in Teotitlán del Valle.
Visit and lunch at an authentic Mezcal palenque.
Exclusively designed trails in magical and unique landscapes.
Daily yoga and meditation sessions.
Support and knowledge of our local guides.
Shared and private accommodation.
9 days & 8 nights ALL inclusive.
* Secure your spot with $800 USD
* 3 - 6 monthly installments available
Do you have any questions or you need more information?
Leave us your information and an Aire Libre member will contact you immediately.
"Everything about the Aire Libre experience deeply impacted me. Meeting a joyous group of people that became friends, and bonding with them while working towards a common goal made the entire experience incredibly rewarding. Outside the amazing people involved, I didn’t expect to have such a strong connection with the trail. It was nothing like I expected. No music, no city noise, no distraction, just focus between you and the trail. Enabling a very zen-like experience, where you receive so much clarity and removal from the daily stresses of life. Aire Libre left such an indescribable impact on me. It’s something I’ll cherish forever and eagerly await for the next one to take place."
- Adam Haun, USA, 2017
WHAT IF I’M NOT PHYSICALLY FIT ENOUGH FOR THIS EXPERIENCE?
It is very important to emphasize here that these experiences aren’t races or competitions, but rather opportunities to get away from the noise of urban life and to connect with oneself in nature. That being said, worry not, because the minimum required level of fitness is to be able to walk well, both uphill and downhill. We usually divide into sub-groups according to the level of fitness and each group is assigned a local guide who is very familiar with the route. Furthermore, there will always be a guide who stays behind the last participant of the last group, so that we make sure no one is left behind.
WHAT IF I HAVE NEVER RUN TRAIL BEFORE?
The Aire Libre Team, as well as most of our local guides, have extensive experience running trail, so there will be many opportunities to share relevant information and knowledge. In fact, if this is your first time, we are genuinely thrilled for you, because a truly amazing world of memorable landscapes and deep discovery is waiting for you. Moreover, the pace of our journeys is usually easy and includes frequent rest stops, so you can take your time in getting acquainted with the local terrain.
The content of our travel experiences is geared towards spreading the word and generating awareness about ways to improve your overall wellbeing while living in harmony with nature. It is very important for us at Aire Libre to create consciousness about keeping our planet safe and clean. Our retreats and getaways are created in an environment where conscious consumption, waste management, good nutrition and prosperity are of utmost importance.
Please keep our trails clean (;