Letter from a Reader: Easy Walks in Oaxaca's Sierra Norte?

A reader writes:

I hope this is not too detailed a question, but I have not found information elsewhere so I thought I would give you a try.

My husband and I are visiting Oaxaca  and had looked forward to visiting the villages and enjoying the natural beauty of the Sierra Norte for a few days. Unfortunately, my husband is recovering from a pulled muscle. He is fine to walk around, explore villages, (sit on a bench and enjoy a view!) but not for hiking.

So far I have only found hiking/adventure/village visiting tours organized by the villages – which is how I understand the communities prefer people to visit (?). Do you know of a lower activity option that I can look into? We would be happy to stay in one village/lodge for the whole visit or use a local bus to explore during the day and return in the evening. As long as the exploring days aren’t too physical.

Thanks for any ideas you may have. No worries if nothing comes to mind, it may not exist!

editor’s note: I passed this missive on to our “Oaxaca Hiking” correspondents, Billy and Kaki Burruss.

Couple stands in front of agave on hike in Oaxaca mountains.

Hiking to Benito Juarez.

Kaki’s reply:

Here’s the skinny:

Benito Juarez is the best of the towns for easy access to short hikes, and it has a  pleasant town center and guest rooms. The women cook excellent local food. The bus does not go there, however. It’s a 3 mile walk from the bus stop. The bus does go to Cuajimoloyas. However, the guest cottage is located at the top of a steep hill, and is quite a climb for an injured person. You would probably be able to hitchhike or hire a ride from Cuajimoloyas to Benito Juarez.

We suggest talking with the Sierra Norte office in the city of Oaxaca. Their web page is http://sierranorte.org.mx/en/index.html . The address in Oaxaca City is at the bottom of their web page.

Another possibility is to hire someone to take you around. We recommend Roque. We went birding with him several years ago, and he took us by small van to lots of beautiful places. He will tailor his tour to where you want to go. His web site is: http://www.mexonline.com/oaxacabirdingtours.htm

He is very knowledgeable about culture and ecology as well as birds and is very personable; he speaks very good English.

Of course, if you have a car you can drive to Benito Juarez easily.

Be sure to take warm jackets. It gets cold up there. Hope you are able to work it out.

2 Responses to “Letter from a Reader: Easy Walks in Oaxaca's Sierra Norte?”

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  1. Teri says:

    I have lived here for over 9 years and I love to walk in the mountains, yet I have problems. I always go to Llano Grande. It is a small pueblo about 20 minutes past Cuajimoloyas. There are a couple simple but good comedors and they have wonderful cabins. The walk is much more flat and is along a simple road. It is beautiful all year – full of flowers and moss-covered trees. Very nice people.
    If you would like more information or need help with arrangements, don’t hesitate to write to me.

  2. churpa says:

    Thank you so much for your additional advice, Teri.