Wednesday, July 24, 2024

The best nature trails for mountain biking in Mexico

The words “nature” and “trails” sound like music to the ears of mountain biking enthusiasts. If you feel inspired, confident, and motivated to explore some off the beaten track travel experiences (literally) in Mexico, then look no further.

We have investigated the best nature biking trails out there, from the north to the south of the country. Biking routes in Mexico are as varied as the country’s rich biodiversity. From the stunning contrast of the deep blue Pacific Ocean and Sierra Madre mountains to the cenotes in the Yucatán peninsula, explore some of the top-rated nature trails for cycling in Mexico.

Part of your route in Yucatan must include a visit to a cenote – take a trail past the stunning Cenote Samulá. (CC)

Whatever your taste in biking-based exploration, you are guaranteed to find a trail near you with options that will enhance your understanding of Mexico’s topography and natural beauty. Welcome to this natural journey through our country!

Atotonilco Circuit, San Miguel Allende, Guanajuato

This trail is ideal for hiking, mountain biking, and running. It is a 26.6 kilometer loop near San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, where you can appreciate nature alongside the historical monuments and churches scattered across the region. The route is very peaceful and is considered to be of medium difficulty.

Pozas Huichichila, Puerto Vallarta

This route near Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco is best during the rainy season (June through July) to experience the pools at their maximum water level. It is a path that leads to a small valley nestled between hills at the base of the Sierra Madre, an old road to Puerto Vallarta. Dogs are welcome on this trail, making it ideal for hiking, mountain biking and running. Pozas Huichichila is a 5.8 kilometer round trip.

Santa Catarina River, National Park Cumbres de Monterrey

Fall in love with the views of the Santa Catarina River in Cumbres de Monterrey National Park. (Unsplash)

This route is an excellent choice if you wish to explore the nature of the northern state of Nuevo León and its eastern Sierra Madre mountain range. The views of the stunning cleft mountains are truly breathtaking. It is a 57.6 kilometer round trip route near Santa Catarina, Nuevo León, but is open to hikers, bikers and runners alike.

Diego Mateo Valley, National Park El Chico, Hidalgo 

Set in a lush oyamel forest surrounded by cliffs, valleys and ravines, this route in central Mexico is truly stunning. The valley is situated in one of the most renowned areas of the national park, considered one of the most important in Mexico. Diego Mateo is a short ride, at just a 2.7 kilometer round trip. Near the municipality of Mineral del Chico, Hidalgo, home to several of the first Pueblos Mágicos. Here, you can enjoy camping, hiking, mountain biking and running, as well as the unique British-style towns constructed during the 19th century.

Guadalupe Valley, Baja California

Vineyards, pastures and high cliffs overlooking the waves of the Pacific Ocean characterize this stunning route, which is perfect for bikers. Located near Ensenada, Baja California, this incredible road offers a 9.8 kilometer round trip route through extraordinary landscapes. You may also want to consider stopping for a delicious drink and meal along the way, as the region is home to some of Mexico’s best wineries.

Real de Catorce, San Luis Potosí

The viewpoint at San Luis Potosí’s Real de Catorce affords some mindblowing views and a great ride. (Alltrails)

This 2.7 kilometer round trip route will lead you to a viewpoint with magnificent views of the famous and beautiful Sierra de Catorce. Here, you can (of course) enjoy mountain biking, but adventure junkies can also trade in their wheels for a horseback ride through the canyon. Part of the charm of this small town is its immersion in the beauty of the desert, creating a timeless atmosphere due to its history as a colonial silver mining center in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

San Nicolás Totolapan South, México state

Dogs are welcome on this beautiful forest trail. The scents and views are amazing, and it’s a 14.6 kilometer loop near Mexico City in the state of México. The vegetation is predominantly composed of oaks, pines and oyamel trees, creating a delightful environment where your dog can roam freely without a leash, and you can tear up the dirt trails on your mountain bike.

Cenotes X’Kekén and Samulá, Yucatán

From Sisal Park in the center of Valladolid to the cenotes of X’Kekén and Samulá, this cycle route takes riders through some of the Yucatán’s most picturesque jungle. You will traverse the Dzitnup Bike Path, and along the way, encounter La Cueva, a stunning cave with massive limestone formations and stalactites hanging from the ceiling. It is an 11.7 kilometer round trip near Valladolid, Yucatán.

Pista Bavisto, Sonora

Desert riders can check out Pista Bavisto, Sonora. (Alltrails)

This location is a favorite among mountain bikers. Here, you will discover breathtaking views of the Sonoran Desert and a variety of biking routes on an 8.0 kilometer loop near Guaymas. 

What other Mexican mountain bike trails would you add? if you think there’s an amazing ride that we ought to know about – let us know in the comments!

Ana Paula de la Torre is a Mexican journalist and collaborator for various outlets including Milenio, Animal Político, Vice, Newsweek en Español, Televisa and Mexico News Daily.


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