Why you should visit the Copper Canyon
- Still relatively undiscovered, but go now as this will change
- Opportunity to experience one of the world’s most epic train rides
- Spectacular landscapes
- Encounter the Rumuri (Tarahumara) Indians who live in the caves within the canyon system
- Excellent hiking opportunities for enthusiasts
- Visit Batopilas, a small 19th Century mining village found deep in the canyon
Our specialists ‘Must Do’
There is no question that a holiday to the Copper Canyon must include the fantastic railway journey from El Fuerte to Posada Barrancas. “We and a handful of other tourists were the only ones to board the train the Chihuahua-Pacific Railway at El Fuerte. A one hundred and thirty kilometre train ride that would see us gain 1,600 metres in altitude and snake through a series of tunnels, bridges and valleys. It is not just scenic but one of the most fascinating and awe-inspiring train journeys in the world” says Justin Wateridge after his recent holiday to Mexio. If you have time, a visit to Batopilas deep in the Canyon is definitely worth the journey.
A little more about the Copper Canyon
Northern Mexico boasts impressive, stark and rugged beauty. Here you will find sprawling desert, cowboys, cattle ranches, cacti, and even rattlesnakes, but you will also see the fantastic natural wonder that is the Copper Canyon. The Copper Canyon, which was misleadingly named by the Spanish who mistook the greenish-glow of lichen for copper is a well-kept secret and only visited by a few. It is a network of more than 20 spectacular canyons carved out of the Sierra Tarahumara. The largest canyon is Urique at a staggering 6,136ft at its deepest. In comparison, the Grand Canyon in the USA has a depth of only 4,674 ft.
The area is home to the second largest Native American Indigenous community – the Taramuhara. These world famous long-distance runners moved in to the Copper Canyon over five hundred years ago to avoid conscription by the Spanish to work in the silver mines. Still maintaining a vital presence in the area, the Taramuhara live throughout the Copper Canyon region in log cabins and caves, maintaining close ties to the land.
The ex mining communities such as the town of Batopilas are fascinating to visit, with just 2,000 inhabitants, only the faded grandeur of the 19th century gold rush remains.
When to go to the Copper Canyon
A holiday to Mexico's Copper Canyon can be tailor made all year round. During September and October the Canyon is at its greenest, but colder. During April and Easter there is the chance to experience a rare insight into the amalgamation of Tarahumara traditions and the Catholic religion as preparations for the festivities get underway.