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El Charco del Ingenio

Address: Calle Paloma S/N, Col. Las Colonias, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
Phone Number: 52 415 154-4715
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Owner description: El Charco del Ingenio is a botanical garden and nature preserve just a few minutes from the...
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Attraction details
Owner description: El Charco del Ingenio is a botanical garden and nature preserve just a few minutes from the historical city of San Miguel de Allende. The name comes from a spring-fed pool nestled in an impressive canyon. With great biodiversity, many different species of native plants and animals are in the canyon, the wetlands and the dry scrubland. El Charco hosts an extensive botanical collection made up of cacti and other succulent Mexican plants, many of which are rare, threatened or in danger of extinction. This is a place that was sanctified as a Peace Zone by the Dalai Lama, where you can enjoy the Conservatory of Mexican Plants, scenic overlooks, historic sites, trails, Interactive Garden for Children, camping zone, cafeteria & gift shop, as well as different activities like guided tours, sweat-lodge, workshops, concerts, full moon ceremonies and more.

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180 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Chicago, Illinois
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2015

We had only one hour the first time and are planning another visit soon. It's unlike other botanical gardens we have visited--usually manicured and refined. This appears more like a preserve, a nature center and a bird sanctuary. Very pleasant, quiet, a great place to just sit and admire the great views. For those who do not have a car,... More 

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Perth, Australia
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
5 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2015

We walked up to the gardens from town (approx 30 minutes), it's a bit of a hike but you get fantastic views and can see all the beautiful houses. We spend about three hours here and would recommend at least two, there are heaps of photo opportunity spots to stop at and benches to take in the scenery. The gorge/canyon... More 

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Brattleboro, Vermont
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
3 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2015

This is a well laid out botanical garden with a variety of cacti and other plants native to this part of Mexico. Extensive trails provide plenty of hiking. Most if not all signs are in Spanish and English. Three different habitats; high desert, marine and canyon have their own unique plants and environments. A small cantina provides simple but fresh... More 

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New York, New York, United States
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 11, 2015

My husband and i love a good hike, it's really not THAT bad of a walk there or back. We did encounter plenty of cabs in town for those afraid of an uphill walk to the garden. The place is pretty remote so make sure you know where you're going before you embark. The space itself is vast and beautiful.... More 

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Vancouver
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
6 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2015

It looks like a good spot. We walked there (up a LONG STEEP hill with spectacular views after wandering around the Fabrico Aurora) only to discover that dogs are not allowed. Rated it as very good, so as not to spoil the rating. As an aside, dogs are not welcome in many of the places we have been in SMA... More 

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Manchester, Vermont
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
10 attraction reviews
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2015

So nice to escape town for a walk on the semi wild side. The flora of mostly cactus was so foreign and interesting to us. The greenhouse was great as was the lakewalk...but the canyon below the dam was spectacular. The deep blue pool below was fascinating. We went on a cool January day. Perfect walking weather. Perfect getaway from... More 

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Oxford, Mississippi
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
14 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2015

This botanical garden is filled with an abundance of cacti, birds, butterflies, and dragonflies. Take your sunscreen and a hat!

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Long Beach, CA
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2015

We were visiting SMA during the New Year's weekend and the centro was quite congested. Our visit to this beautiful botanical garden, just a few kms outside of town, rejuvenated our spirit. Easy trail with very interesting flora. Well worth a visit.

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Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2015

This is my second visit to this place, and this time I went all around it. When you walk you feel surrounded by peace. No wonder even the Dalai Lama considered it a peaceful place, (look for the plate). At first, you would say "Why would I visit a place full of cacti?" But then, you will realize that even... More 

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Colorado Springs, Colorado
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
5 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2014

We arrived in the late morning and enjoyed omelets, coffee con leche, and fresh orange juice from the small restaraunt before walking. The food was great and served at open air tables. We took a taxi up from the Centro and then walked down through new and old neighborhoods afterwards. We agreed that was the proper order for walking and... More 

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