Oaxaca de Juárez, Mexico

Explore Hierve El Agua

4 Miles Total - Out-and-Back Trail

Originally added by Jenna Mulligan

In this arid landscape, the Hierve el Agua pools stand out beside a steep ravine and create an optical illusion of a frozen waterfall.

This site is a short drive from the capital city of Oaxaca state, Oaxaca de Juarez. You can hire a driver or take a combination of collectivos, first to the town of Mitla, and then further to the Hierve el Agua springs. 

The driver will drop you in a large parking lot after you pay an entrance fee of 25 pesos ($1.50).  Also on site are many food stands serving memelas and other Oaxacan traditional food.

The excursion can be a day trip or extended into an overnight visit to linger in the springs in the early morning or late evening, when fewer visitors are around. Ask at the entrance for information about cabanas which are available for overnight rental - these have electricity and offer a remote, slow way to enjoy the springs.

The pools are a short walk beyond the parking lot, with signs clearly pointing the way. The water is not boiling hot, but rather stays tepid at about 25 degrees Celsius.

One beautiful addition to these springs are the dramatic "waterfalls" which are made when mineral water pushes through limestone, creating karsts. This causes a deposit on the mountain's edge where the water flows, and over time builds a deposit that resembles a frozen waterfall.

Hierve El Agua has two examples of this formation, one called Cascada Grade (Big Waterfall) and one called Cascada Chica (Little Waterfall). From the springs, there is a small dirt path that leads out to the top of Cascada Grande, and then descends into the ravine to loop under both.

This trail about 4 miles round trip, and is an out-and-back trail. Be very conscious to stay on the trail, so to preserve the area from erosion and be respectful in the space.

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Adult Beverages
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Hot Springs
Swimming Hole


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We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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