Guest post by Cheryl Williams
After a great few days in Tepoztlan, it was time to move on to what we heard was a picturesque town called Taxco. Taxco has a long history in silver mining, quite evident in the many, many shops selling silver around it’s downtown core.
The journey to Taxco was slightly more complicated than we thought it might be, with buses from Tepoztlan only going as far as Cuernavaca. And then once in Cuernavaca, we quickly realised there are 4 bus terminals spread throughout the traffic-ful city. However, Lonely Planet and our gps enabled phone in hand, we managed to maneuver through a market and a couple kilometers across town to the right bus station.
Arriving in Taxco quickly reminded us that we were in yet another hilly town. 15 minutes of walking up narrow, windy, and somewhat steep streets had us happily land at our accomodation – Santa Prisca Hotel. Quickly settling into the old colonial inn we realized we’d found a gem. Close to the Zocalo (main square), quiet, clean, and brightly decorated.
We arrived on a Saturday and thought the town would be bustling with tourists (it is known as a nice weekend getaway from Mexico City). And it was a bit busy, but not nearly what we had expected. We found a nice bar on a balcony and enjoyed some beer and a few games of crib while we watched the busy street below us.
The next day we headed out to the Las Pozas Azules – beautiful swimming holes in a nearby town. We jumped in a Combi (kind of a shared taxi) to make the 45 minute journey. The Pozos Azules are gorgeous. Turquoise blue water, small waterfalls, and only a handful of people in sight – just the kind of place we were hoping for. We walked around for a while, just to work up the courage to get into the cool water. We both knew inevitably we’d end up swimming, so once we saw a just few locals getting wet, we quickly followed. So worth it.
Arriving back in town, we found some lunch on another tiny balcony (Steph finds them a bit awkward, but I find the charm and novelty far outweighs the inconvenience of plates not really fitting on the table etc…) I always have a desire to get to the highest point of a place, to get a different view. To follow on that theme we decided to walk (or rather climb) up to one of the two well known viewpoints of the city. Most people take a cab or combi, but we decided to keep the fitness tracker on my phone happy and trek up. From our guest house it took about 45 minutes of walking through the narrow, cobblestone streets to reach our destination. Some of the streets are so narrow and steep that they are just stairs. In Taxco, most of the taxi’s are old, white, Volkswagon Beetle’s, and I have no idea how they continue to make it up and down the streets. Anyway, the view at the top was very nice, and all the more rewarding after the trek.
The following day we headed out of town again, this time to the Grutas de Cacahuamilpa. This large cave system is quite remarkable. They’ve uncovered and made accessible to the public about 2km of caves, with another 2km left to open up. The caves are very tall, and quite stunning, though by the end of our 1.5 hour mandatory tour (in Spanish), I was pretty ready to get back to daylight. The mandatory tour was a bit hilarious as from what we picked up on the guide was mostly pointing out the different shapes they’d discovered over the years. Animals, people kissing, kings etc were all highlighted.
On the way back from the caves we got our very friendly combi driver to drop us off at the entrance to the teleferico. This old, swiss built gondola was our ride up to the other great viewpoint of the city. There is a bar/restaurant at the fancy hotel up there and we’d promised ourselves a fancy drink on the patio. It didn’t really work out like that as when we got there the only patio we found was overlooking the pool and in direct sun, with no one else sitting on it. So, we enjoyed the view for a few moments and headed back to a little store with a some patio furniture where Steph finally got to try a Michelado (a mexican version of a ceasar – beer and tomato juice mixed together). I stuck with Corona.
Taxco was a great spot to spend a few days. But after three nights, it was time to move on to Puebla City – a colonial city with zero hills.