Situated about 13km from Mitla, this spectacular site is definitly worth a visit.
3 km outside of Mitla towards Zacatepec, take direction Xaaga. The way is well marked.
It is recommended not to drive this way during the rainy season, as the road is not paved.
The way is climbing rapidly and the view on the way is superb.
There is an entrance fee to the site. Then a small walk down to the two natural bassins.
Two hudge cascades are falling from theese lakes.
On the way back take the other road, to San Lorenzo, it is much longer but it is paved.
It is a not pleasant drive to get here from San Lorenzo it was bad then we had to change and get in a kind of truck. the 2 waterpools are made by men. but the view is awesome. dont go to close to the edge tho.
bring swimming stuff if you have time and good shoes.
There must be an platform for people who cant walk very good, but you cant get to the pools then.
Pain to get to, but the Mineral Springs and petrified waterfalls of Hierve el Agua, east Of Oaxaca, are a must. A stunning mountain landscape, the springs of which have been 'dammed' to make 2 glorious 'semi' natural swimming pools perched on a ledge looking onto the valley and mountains. Tired of the swimming, take the fairly arduous round-trip path that will take you below the pools (takes an hour and 20/40 minutes dependent on the heat of the day). Seeing the petrified waterfalls from below are spectacular. There's also a man-made swimming pool on the site.
It's not the easiest place in the world to get to - there are buses from Oaxaca city or from Mitla but limit your time unless you're staying overnight. The Springs form part of a organised tour but tend to be one stop of many and you get little time to see the place. If there are 3 of you, maybe worth hiring a local taxi to take you and wait.
So, we rented a car and the lady at the car place said "You have to see Hierve de Agua", so we said, "Why not?" The only way to see this place is by renting a car because it is really out there in the middle of no where! You have to take dirt road up in the highlands to find the place. We stopped at a little town to ask where we were and they said "just keep going, you cannot miss it!" Well, after about an hour on the road, we finally made it, and it was well worth the effort! The place is actually some highly concentrated mineral springs that have crusted over with time. You can walk on the places where the water comes out and view the spectacular scenery around the falls. It was a wonderful site!
Here is a more detailed description from a website:
There are two impressive petrified waterfalls here (calcium carbonate), that were formed thousands of years ago, as the result of dripping carbonated water. The water descends 160 feet (50 metres) over two rugged rock cliffs.
The spring area, source of the fall, was taken advantage of to create a large pool, which has become a natural warm-water spa.
Hierve el Agua has been recognised as being a probable sacred place of the ancient Zapotecos, founded here perhaps, because of its impressive natural contrasts. It is deep in the heart of a steep sierra that is characterised for its extreme dryness during its low-water season
San Lorenzo Albarradas: Is located 50 miles (80 kilometres) East of the City of Oaxaca via highway 190 to the Isthmus. Turn left at the Mitla detour and continue on the road which takes you to Ayutla Mixes. Turn left when you reach the San Lorenzo Albarradas detour. Approximate travel time: [2:00]
Hierve el Agua is found in the Roeguia Ranch, which is itself located 3 miles (5 kilometres) from San Lorenzo Albarradas.
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