in Durango, Mexico
A souvenir from my trip to Durango: A pink umbrella (most likely not made in Durango, but far... far... away!)
Some say that the road is more important than the destination. I have to say that in this applies to my Durango trip. Even though I was excited to visit the city I was more excited about the road. To be able to reach Durango city we had to cross the beautiful Sierra Madre mountain system and visited the Mexiquillo Natural Park in the mountains.
We took several pictures (above one, highly photoshopped picture of me with the Mexiquillo rock formations in the background), for more realistic pictures and to know more about Mexiquillo and the Sierra madre... continue reading:
Driving on the highway
The highway that connects the city of Mazatlan with the city of Durango is a very modern and recently built highway, which shortened the time between both cities from eight to three hours. This motivated us to rent a car and drive there, since three hours is not that long, and we had heard of how beautiful the views were.
We were not disapointed, as soon as we entered the highway leaving Mazatlan, the views started becoming more beautiful, and, in my opinion, the most beautiful views are where the states of Sinaloa and Durango connect. At that point we were really high in the mountains and you could see very far away and very far down. It was mountains and green as far as we could see and we had a chance to see very espectacular rock formations and waterfalls. Unfortunately we were passing so fast in the car that it was too late when I tried to take the picture, or the picture would come up really blurry. In the end I decided it was better to just enjoy the view, even though I did manage to take some cool photos, down below you will find some beautiful views from the highway.
Mexiquillo Natural Park
Even though it is a little bit of a detour from the highway, we decided to include Mexiquillo Natural Park in our trip because it is highly recommended by anyone who has been there. Unfortunately it was high season and renting a cabin there was out of our budget (we should have planned to go with more people or.. off season).
So, on our way to Durango we passed by Mexiquillo with the intention to stay there the whole day. We only stayed there a couple of hours because it started rainning heavily, but this was ideal because on our way back to Mazatlan we passed again and just continued where we left. This way we had more time to check the rest of the park.
The park is known by its peculiar rock formations, which attract many visitors and have also been featured in films like The Caveman. There are also lakes, waterfalls, forests and tunnels from a railway that was never finished. The visitors can rent bikes, horses or quad vehicles to go around the park. We went by foot, so we were not able to see all of it, but we saw most of the main attractions.
In the park's main path you see other people, mainly by car or other vehicle. Very few people walk, so when you go a little bit off the path then it's quite empty and calm. This was a great way to feel disconnected from civilization and just enjoy nature. Besides the beautiful landscape we were able to see many small animals. Around the lakes and water streams it was full of frogs. They were everywhere, and it was almost impossible to see them until they jumped away when you walked nearby. We also saw lizards and squirrels.
As for food options, there were people selling elotes and snacks by the waterfalls, at that point everyone is very hungry so they were selling a lot. At the entrance of Mexiquillo there is also a small cabin where they sell food (only gorditas or taco's, I think). We ate there to hide from the rain, the food was ok and the prices were very accessible.
So, I would recommend anyone who is in the area, or passing by, to make a stop in Mexiquillo, and if possible, spend the night there to have a beautiful view of the stars. It's great for people who like sports, so they can walk, climb or go with the bike. For those who don't like physical exercise so much, going with the car is still a very good option.
I hope you enjoyed the photos!