There are so many reasons to head to this wonderful country just south of the USA. And maybe you weren’t thinking that nature was one of them. But Mexico has it all – from snow-capped, lofty peaks to incredible beaches, lined with a hundred palm trees! This country has just about every ecosystem you can imagine, and its national parks are incredible. Don’t miss them – not if you make it to the land “south of the border”!
Here are some of the best natural sites that you have to see if you get down to Mexico
● Lake Chapala, Jalisco: Come for the sunrise and scant he panorama of local boats floating over the water of Mexico’s largest freshwater lake. This is true tranquility.
● Calakmul Biosphere Reserve, Campeche: Or if you prefer the jungle, try out some bird watching here on the border with Guatemala. Calakmul is one of the country’s largest protected natural areas. It’s also home to the Maya ruins of the same name.
● Hierve el Agua, Oaxaca: Petrified waterfalls? Yes, you heard that right. These unique geologic formations are eerie and unreal, and make for a wonderful spot for a hike and a picnic!
● Parque Nacional Grutasde Cacahuamilpa, Guerrero: I hope you’re not claustrophobic! Because this site – one of the largest cave systems in the world – is simply stunning!
● Las Coloradas, Yucatán: True to its name (translation:“the colored ones”), the lake here almost seems painted an unnatural red. Unnatural maybe, but eerily beautiful.
● Tepozteco Hill, Morelos: The bizarre thumb-shaped formations here are mirrored in the ancient pyramid. Enjoy history and nature all in one!
● Tamul Waterfall, San Luis Potosí: Nothing really says“nature” like a waterfall. And this beauty – at over 100m high (almost 250ft) – is one of Mexico’s largest
● Sumidero Canyon, Chiapas: Formed around the same time as the Grand Canyon, this is Mexico’s response – and a wonderful, lush one at that! Unlike in Arizona, here you’re surrounded by water and vegetation.
● Rosario Sanctuary, Michoacán: Butterflies? Each year is witness to a massive migration, where not thousands, but millions, of Monarch butterflies head here, just begging for you to capture them in a photo!
● Potrero Chico, Nuevo León:If you’re a rock climber, this is probably what your heaven looks like! Even if you prefer to keep your feet on the ground, the crazy, steep cliffs here will inspire awe from any vantage point
● Basaltic Prisms, Hidalgo: If you’ve never seen the“Devil’s Postpile” in California, you’ve never seen the likes of this. Even when you get there, you’ll have trouble believing these hexagonal columns are really sculpted by nature – and not aliens!
● Popocatépetl – Iztaccíhuatl National Park, Puebla: Come to the site of two of Mexico’s most famous volcanoes, and walk the unreal landscape of black lava and sometimes even snow!
● Cuatro Ciénegas Biosphere Reserve, Coahuila: A verdant marsh right at the base of grey, barren mountains? Yep – that’s Mexico for you!
● Firefly forests, Tlaxcala: Exactly what it sounds like. Come in June, July, or August and prepare to be amazed.
If you like this article check out our going to the Yucatan dive into a cenote article.