The Popocatepetl is one of the highest volcanos in Mexico, located between the states of Puebla and the State of Mexico some 72 kilometers southeast of Mexico City, this volcano is the second-highest in all of Mexico at 5,500 meters above sea level (only behind the Pico de Orizaba in Veracruz at 5,747 meters). The name Popocatépetl comes from Náhuatl (the language of the Aztecs) and means “Popoca”, it smokes; and “tépetl”, mountain; so put together it’s been called “Mountain that smokes” since the pre-Columbine era. The “Popo” (as it’s affectionately known) is a popular destination for tourists and adventurers looking for a good climbing experience; even if you have the climbing experience yourself, you should consider hiring the services of an experienced guide that climbs the “Popo” professionally.

Before you visit the volcano it’s very important that you make sure that it’s not going to be presenting any activity during that time, the “Popo” became reactivated in 1994 and has been having a series of small eruptions ever since, the most violent ones being in the years 2000 and 2016. Any experienced tour guide will know how to pick the appropriate days to go up the volcano and avoid dangerous activity, but if you want to do that personally you can check these websites to monitor the volcano’s activity in real-time: Cenapred.gob or Webcamsdemexico.com. Another thing to consider for your own safety and that of your party is the weather, the Popocatepetl is cold at the top (there’s even snow). This snow-covered summit, on the other hand, is also what makes Popocatepetl such a popular destination for photography aficionados, as it’s not easy to find snowy landscapes in central Mexico. Before going, try to pre-register at the following phone number: 59 7978 3829.

Entrance to the Popocatepetl is recommended through the town of Amecameca which then leads to the Paso de Cortés, which is a road that crosses right between the Popocatepetl and Iztaccíhuatl volcanos and is named as such as it’s said this is where Hernán Cortés first crossed with his army on his way to Tenochtitlán. In the Paso de Cortés, there’s the office of the High Mountain Guard and you can register and pay your entry fee ($50 pesos) to the park and climb the Popocatépetl. Try to start your hike early as the sun sets at 5 p.m. in the wintertime, there’s even a hostel nearby called Refugio de Altzmoni, for travelers who want to spend the night and start their hike early. Once all these preparations have been met and you reach the “Mirador La Joya” (where the actual hiking and climbing really starts) you can just enjoy your day walking up this magnificent smoking mountain


  • No comments yet.
  • Add a comment