Mexico is one of the most diverse countries on Earth. Thanks to its position very close to the equator and its big territory, you can possibly find mountains, cold and warm rivers, waterfalls, beaches, deserts, and so much more in it. We had the chance to visit a lot of these wonderful places, and we would like to inspire you to explore the natural wonders of Mexico. They aren’t so hidden, but they are quite unknown, so we barely met foreigners there. Let us introduce you to our favourites!
#1 Las Grutas de Tolantongo
The curious travellers have to go through an adventurous journey to reach this place, but it’s totally worth it. Gruta means “cave” in English, this place got this name because the clear and warm water comes from the inside of a cave.
Located close to Ixmiquilpan town in Hidalgo state, this place is the jewel of a big number of natural pools and rivers that can be found in this region. Hidalgo is perfect for people searching for a place to relax and who want to swim in a warm river.
The place is divided into four parts: the main cave, the tunnel, the little pools and the river. All of them with natural warm water!
This place is the main source of the warm water in Tolantongo. The fact that you enter the cave through a beautiful waterfall, just makes the experience more memorable. Even though the water inside is very warm, the waterfall is very cold, so just be ready for the funny surprise when you walk through…
The tunnel is next to the cave, a 40 meters long tube inside of the rock. It’s also a water source and it’s very warm, but you need to take care because it’s totally dark. Just make sure to bring a lamp to be able to watch the road without falling off or hitting a rock. The combination of the darkness and the warm water makes this place truly magical.
You can swim in a lot of rivers in the world, but how many of them have warm water? The river has a stunning blue colour and it‘s divided into little quadrants where you can swim and relax. If you want to camp, you can find a lot of places next to the river. where you can put up your tent. We spent the night there, sleeping under the stars and it was a truly amazing experience.
The little pools
This section of Grutas is in an elevated zone of the canyon from which you can catch the amazing sight of the river and the mountains that surround the pools.
#2 La Huasteca Potosina
La Huasteca Potosina is a region in San Luis Potosi, which is famous because of its hidden waterfalls. In this state there are two bigger cities from which you can start your day trips to the different waterfalls located in La Huasteca: the capital of the region, San Luis Potosí and Ciudad Valles.
We stayed in Ciudad Valles because it‘s more central and there are several public transportation options. Remember to use a life vest in every location in la Huasteca, you will find people renting them for a very cheap price (not more than 3 euros). The currents can be very strong, respect the forces of nature.
Tamasopo is a little town with two amazing waterfalls: Puente de Dios and Cascada de Tamasopo. If you are staying there, we recommend to take the bus at 5 am, because the bus trip takes 2 hours. If you arrive early, then you’re able to enjoy the waterfalls and the nature before the tourists groups arrive.
Puente de Dios
Puente de Dios is our absolute number one. This amazing paradise is located in the middle of a tropical forest. After climbing a lot of stairs the main wall of waterfalls welcomes you. There you can swim and jump into the water. The current will take you to a surrealistic cave where you can find a lot of little fish swimming around your feet. It’s a breath-taking experience.
Cascada de Tamasopo
Tamasopo is very different from Puente de Dios, the waterfalls are a bit bigger and this place is also more touristy, it’s full of life, food, people and music. There are also several spots for swimming and jump here into the fresh water.
The Tamul is one of the most impressive waterfalls in La Huasteca, although you can’t swim under it, like at the other ones. It’s actually the most difficult one to reach in the region. You can take a bus from Ciudad Valles and then get off in the middle of the highway in a little town. There you have 3 options: either walk 1 hour to the port where you can take a boat, take a taxi that takes you to the port, or hitchhike. We had the funniest hitchhike ever, we were travelling on truck for like 30 min. Then we rented a boat with some other travellers and then we were rowing for approximately 1 hour and a half against the current of the river. All our things got wet of course, and we got super tired, but then we saw the most wonderful waterfall. This view was something that we will remember forever.
El Naranjo is another region in la Huasteca, rich in hidden natural wonders. El Naranjo is also a little town, from where you have to go a bit to the north, to find some of the waterfalls. There is no suitable transportation to arrive to all the locations in El Naranjo, so the best that you can do for exploring this region is renting a car or a taxi for the whole day.
El Salto waterfall
If you visit this waterfall in dry season (May-September), you might find it empty, because the company next to it takes all the water to provide energy for the region. But although the waterfall itself is just visible in rainy season, the beautiful green natural pools are always there to amaze you.
Salto del Meco waterfall (and river)
If you just want to see the waterfall, you have to go to a viewpoint from where you are able to hear the powerful sound of the water and take some beautiful photos. It’s very interesting that even if the waterfall is very powerful, the river is very calm. The water is clear and you can swim here or take a boat tour to the base of the waterfall itself.
This was probably our best experience, because here you can swim very close to the fall. Like that, you are able to feel the power of the water and the drops and the fresh air on your face, that makes the whole experience even more memorable. There are more places here where you can swim and jump also, and you can also walk up to the top of a wooden construction from where you can adore the waterfall from the top (the view makes the whole climbing up worth it).
Micos is an amazing place that combines 7 waterfalls all along the trace of 1 kilometer of river. The most exciting thing here is that you can swim through the river and jump from each of the waterfalls! Of course that you will need the proper equipment, but don’t worry, here you will find a lot of people from whom you can rent. If you are an adrenaline lover, this is a must in your trip to El Naranjo.
#3 Hierve el Agua
The Hierve el Agua is the name of the natural stalactite rock formations that resemble cascades of water. It’s in Oaxaca state, 3 hours from Oaxaca City. The petrified waterfalls of Hierve el Agua are one of the most surrealistic places that we have ever visited. When you arrive, you can already feel that you are in a very special place… the silence surrounds you, but not in an uncomfortable way, you can feel the peace of this place going through your body and soul.
The water leaking from the Earth makes its way into the mineral-rich soil. The impressive form of the mountain (like a waterfall) is the result of this process after millions of years.
There are three parts that you can visit: the main natural pool at the entrance with a magical view to the other petrified waterfall, the hill with the water hole, and the bottom of the waterfall.
There are places where you can connect with nature in a higher level, this is definitely one of them.
The main pool
Even if this is the first stop that you can make here, we recommend you to leave this spot to the end, the fresh water will be so good after the long hiking. This is the most famous photo spot in Hierve el Agua: the surrealistic landscape with the mountains, a natural pool and a dead tree.
The hill has a little water hole where you can watch the water source and the huge mountains surrounding the waterfalls. One of the most amazing things that you can do here is drinking the water, that comes from a little cave: it is salty and the locals say that it has healing properties.
The bottom of the waterfall
This is the lowest point of Hierve el Agua from which you can see why it’s called a “petrified waterfall”: it looks like if a waterfall has been frozen over time. It’s even more special, for the amazing silence that wraps Hierve el Agua is even deeper in this spot. You can connect with nature in a totally different way.
By Dante and Zsuzsi from @deertraveler
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