Set out on an extraordinary Travelian Journey into a biosphere reserve encompassing one third of the State of Queretaro, featuring mountain vistas, rivers, Franciscan missions and butterflies, plus a visit to the surreal structures of Edward James’s Las Pozas. Be a part of a small group of interested and appreciative travelers, led by our knowledgeable local guide and experienced Travelian guides.
Travel into the mountains of Queretaro to experience unforgettable vistas after hiking to the hillcrest of the village of Cuatro Palos. Ridge after ridge of nearly undisturbed land await your gaze, and will introduce you to The Sierra Gorda Biosphere. This area, about the size of the State of Rhode Island, was established by decree in May 1997 to preserve its exceptional variety of ecosystems and species of fauna and flora.
The 13,000 population town of Jalpan de Serra is the largest in the Biosphere, with people who live daily lives in a goal of preserving the heritage of this natural resource. It will be our base for a number of daytrips into the region at large to experience both natural and cultural offerings.
Walk among the butterflies feeding on minerals along Ayutla River, tour the Huastecan-influenced Tancama archeological site, and visit at least three of the Franciscan Missions of the Sierra Gorda. These UNESCO World Heritage Sites date back to the mid-1700s and are famous for their elaborate facades featuring a unique “Mestizo-Baroque” style, incorporating both indigenous influences and Franciscan symbolism into masterfully blended invitations intended to draw in the local indigenous populations of the mid-18th century.
Marvel at the surrealistic fantasy-world created by Edward James at Las Pozas, outside of Xilitla, San Luis Potosi. The jungle-encroaching site is filled with gardens and pools, and is inhabited by massive and colorful concrete structures, some representative of nature, some ornately architectural and some too imaginative for words. The experience can be so unbelievable that by staying overnight in Xilitla, there will be two opportunities to see and believe the fantasia created by Edward James over the course of 35 years.
Returning to San Miguel, lunch will be enjoyed in the colonial village of Bernal, home to the monolithic Pena de Bernal, locally-made woolens, cheese and brightly colored minerals.
Join Travelian’s expert guides on this small-group tour and embrace the region’s natural beauty and cultural heritage in comfort and safety.