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“Great rugged countryside, beautiful scenery, geat hiking”
Review of Batopilas Canyon

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Attraction details
Owner description: A beautiful and seldom-seen region located along the scenic Copper Canyon route.
Province of Cuenca, Spain
Level 6 Contributor
97 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Great rugged countryside, beautiful scenery, geat hiking”
Reviewed March 16, 2012

Batopilas Caynon definately was the hit of our week in the Copper Canyons. We made great walks with the local guide, Manuel Gil (any of the hotels can connect you with him). The vegetation in Batopilas is tropical (mangoes and such) but just out side it is very arid with many different cactus--- some were flowering-- but as you climb up you hit regions of knarly oaks and even higher up are the pines. Incredible views of this tropical alpine region!!

We had the luck of see how locals made tequila up in the mountains (some 1000 meter higher than Batopilas) and to taste the wonderfully sweet and smokey, rather yam-like savor of cooked maguey cactus which the drink is made from. Manuel is a man who has lived in many facets of life, having worked in resturants and such but he is a man of the countryside-- many years a farmer and others a guide through out the region. Very knowledgable of life, of the vegetation and of local dynamics.

Yes, there are narcos in the region but with a local guide and prudence there should be no problem. They are after other affairs than messing with tourists. Their influence is way down compared to 2-3 years ago, there is very minimal drug crop in the region due to strong activity of the Mexican army which now only maintains a descrete presence.

The road down to the Canyon is being paved, so it will soon be different. But for the moment it is a dirt road with no shoulder obviously and it winds down an incredible and dramatic drop. We went with public transport and the two drivers-- one coming down in a van and the other going up in a revamped school bus-- were both great and very able drivers, very cautious. This transport is a nice place to get a flavor of local life-- much better than traveling in your own car where you do not know how to handle the curves and all.

Visited March 2012
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Thank Spiii-Rose
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Phoenix
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Copper Canyon Spectacular Views of Batopilas”
Reviewed March 7, 2012

Our group from USA of 10 toured to Batopilas in Copper Canyon from Creel Chihuahua. The service that "The 3 Amigos" provided was excellent. We contracted a 12 passenger red van which was chauffeured by Cesar & Pedro (English Speaking). We were provided a picnic lunch in the forest with linen tablecloth, crystal goblet, china & silverware. The view was spectacular. We then proceeded to our distination. The drivers were very informative of the area. The road was quite narrow but drivers were truly gentlemen and drove slowly. Our group voted our drivers the best!

Visited March 2012
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Thank pcbaja
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Awesome motorcycle trip to an amazing place in Mexico.”
Reviewed February 7, 2012

Trip doable with 4 wheel drive or dual sport motorcycle. Area is remote and amazingly beautiful. Basic accommodation only, but the people and the scenery made it a trip of a lifetime for me!

Here is my ride report with many pictures:

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=745618

Visited December 2011
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3 Thank pooledarren
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“World-class Spectacular Drive”
Reviewed May 16, 2008

Visitors to the Copper Canyon region who can fit some extra time in their schedule should make the side trip to Batopilas from Creel a very high priority. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on how you look at it, Batopilas is very remote. It takes most of a day to travel to Batopilas from Creel and most of another day for the return trip, plus at least one day in Batopilas for sight-seeing. I traveled to Batopilas as part of a 10 day trip to the Copper Canyon region that I arranged with a customized itinerary through Copper Canyon Adventures in El Fuerte. I had read about the scheduled bus service from Creel, but I decided to reserve a private driver for convenience even though it was much, much more expensive than taking the bus. It turned out to be one of the best decisions I've made. It was well worth the expense, but it was $300 not including the hotel. Because Batopilas is so remote, the driver has to stay in Batopilas while you're there. My driver spoke excellent English. He was friendly, entertaining, and intimately familar with the Creel and Batopilas areas. He makes the drive frequently during the high tourist season. He drove an older, but very well maintained, 4WD pickup customized for off-road driving. (I don't know how to contact him directly.)

First, the drive on the paved Gran Vision highway from Creel to the turnoff for Batopilas was beautiful. It reminded me a lot of the drive on Utah state highway 12 from Bryce Canyon NP through Escalante-Grand Staircase NM to Capitol Reef NP. The drive on the gravel road to Batopilas was just spectacular. Steep drop-offs, and views across and down into the canyons. Comparable to some of the best 4WD roads in the Moab or Ouray areas, but with different scenery. Visitors pass the historic La Bufa gold mine and parallel the old El Camino Real Spanish trail across the canyon. The Raramuri ranchitos hanging precariously on the cliff-side wherever there's a small patch of land to plant corn were astounding. At the end of the drive we arrived in the small mining town of Batopilas. We stayed at the Casa Real de las Minas, a good choice (reviewed separately).

My driver seemed to know everyone in town. Across from the hotel is an "old-timey" general store. Local Raramuri, wearing their traditional clothing (both men and women), shopped at the store with their families along with the other local residents. The two local bars were loud with music and singing on Friday night.

The main nearby attraction is the "lost" cathedral of Satevo. It's a fairly long, hot walk from Batopilas but on mostly level ground. But if you have a driver and vehicle like I did, it's only a short drive from Batopilas. The cathedral's exterior has recently been restuccoed after many years of a more worn appearance. (Signs explain the debate about whether to preserve the cathedral in a state of "arrested decay" or to restore it.) The cathedral is fascinating, not to mention the mystery of why it was built in such a remote place.

Back in Batopilas, stop by the new state museum in the Residencia. The curator and his chihuahua are very friendly. The curator has an English script he can use to describe the historic and mining artifacts. There are several historic buildings in town, but as is typical for Mexican architecture, the most attractive parts of the buildings face the interior patio rather than the streets, and most aren't open to the public. The Alexander Shepard silver mill ruins are intersting from across the river, but when I visited they weren't really worth seeing from the inside.

The owner of the Hotel Mary was building some tourist rooms in the compound, but the ruined buildings had no description and most of the ruins were being used as livestock pens or for trash. Maybe he'll clean up the grounds before he opens the little lodge. (The museum has a model of the compound with a description of the buildings but there's nothing at the ruins themselves.) Watch for the small local shop where Luis Kollyes sells reasonably priced prints and postcards from paintings he's made. Well worth a stop.

One of the best local restaurants is Casa de Maria, where delicious truly traditional Mexican meals are prepared in a private kitchen and served at a couple of tables on the attached covered veranda. It's like eating in a private home. (Actually, Dona Maria has passed away. Her daughter (I think) prepares the food now, but I don't remember her name. The restaurant is on the old village square past the Hotel Real de las Minas, but it has no sign identifying it. In the evenings we sat on benches by the general store, talked (well, I tried to; my Spanish isn't the greatest), and watched the people and dogs wander the streets.

On the return drive to Creel we stopped to give local Raramuri kids and their parents a ride to the school at the rim of the canyon in Quirare. They would be standing by the road with a sheer cliff on one side and a steep dropoff to the river on the other. It was a mystery where they came from, and amazing to think they used to hike all the way out of the canyon. Once we had climbed back out of the canyon, we stopped at the Cusurare waterfall (not much water flow in the dry season, but nice), and the very interesting Raramuri-built Loyola Museum housing the early 18th century paintings of the life of the Virgin Mary by Miguel Correa. (There's a good museum of Raramuri life in Creel.)

(The drive to Urique from Cerocahui is a shorter alternative to Batopilas. The round trip drive can be made in less than a day. It's a beautiful drive, but it's not as spectacular as the drive to Batopilas. I did that, too.)

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7 Thank SteveTPA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
“something everyone should see!!!!”
Reviewed August 11, 2004

the train ride and then the bus going down to the canyon is a thrill but the beauty of the mountain ranges is something that everyone should see at least once!! the indians are great and the handicraft that you see; the canyon is a wonderful place for one to find themselves or to enjoy with someone that they love; GO!!

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8 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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