Ecotourism in the Pixquiac river basin

Cañadas del Pixquiac is an ecotouristic project comprising Vega del Pixquiac, Palo Blanco and El Zapotal: three communities in the San Pedro Buenavista ejido, in the municipality of Acajete, Veracruz. These communities are located within the Pixquiac river basin, on Cofre de Perote’s Southeast face. The importance of this river basin lies on three points: there are several hundreds of peasant families living here; it has several mountain forest ecosystems, especially pine and evergreen oak forests and cloud forests, both mesophyl and broadleaved; and finally, around 40% of Xalapa and its surroundings’ water supply comes from this area.

The ecotouristic alternative aims to replace forest logging, the only livelihood known to the peasants of the area up until now. The ejido San Pedro Buenavista’s General Assembly has agreed to turn all cloud forest-covered common areas into ejidal reserves and to use them for ecotourism, thus obtaining an income from touristic and environmental services rather than from the felling of trees. We, the 28 peasants devoted to this project, are in constant training in order to provide you with the best service and to share with you the richness and natural heritage of this area that we look after and cherish so much.

YOUR VISIT IS VERY IMPORTANT. You can help us protect the cloud forest that supplies Xalapa with water by informing others, by writing on our blog and by recommending us or coming back if you’ve already been here. We invite you to discover more than 20 kms. (12.5 miles) by walking through one of our 7 tracks.

Keep in mind that…

By going on these outings, you’re supporting our communities in developing an alternative to forest logging. The income provided by ecotourism and other sustainable activities will allow us to preserve these last remains of mesophyl forest.

 

If you wish to collaborate with this ecotouristic project, write to us at: ecoturismopixquiac@yahoo.com.mx or send us a message through this webpage.

For more information on the Integral Pixquiac river basin project, click here.

 

 

Contact

For more information, reservations, groups and personalized attention, contact:

 

Ecoturismo comunitario Cañadas del Pixquiac

15 minutes away from Xalapa

ecoturismopixquiac@yahoo.com.mx

Facebook: Ecoturismo en la cuenca del río Pixquiac

Photo gallery: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ecoturismopixquiac/

Phone number: 228-8 12 38 92, Cell-phone: 22 81 43 20 66

 

 

Activities

We, the peasant-guides at Cañadas del Pixquiac, have been trained to offer you, always with safety in mind, the following services:

Due to our collaboration agreements with other specialized groups, you can also take part in the following activities in our forests:

  • Bird watching (COAX)

These activities keep their environmental impact to a minimum, helping us ensure the survival of the species and the preservation of resources, such as water and oxygen, provided by the forest.

The ejido San Pedro Buenavista’s General Assembly has agreed to turn all cloud forest-covered common areas into ejidal reserves and to use them for ecotourism, thus obtaining an income from touristic and environmental services rather than from the felling of trees. We, the 28 peasants devoted to this project, are in constant training in order to provide you with the best service and to share with you the richness and natural heritage of this area that we look after and cherish so much.

This page includes the following menu:

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Nature interpretation trails

Nature interpretation trails.

Our guided tours are designed for those interested in getting to know the area, its flora, its history and its people. The guides are local peasants who have been trained in nature interpretation, first aids and bird watching; they know their surroundings like the palm of their hands due to the close relationship they have with the environment. The guides will gladly tell you the stories and legends of the places you’re discovering, thus passing on their oral traditions.

The tours are designed for small groups: between 4 and 15 individuals. The date must be agreed upon at least a week in advance.

Currently, you can choose one or more of our 7 tours, lasting between 30 minutes up to two days. We also have a cabin at Palo Blanco, as well as camping tents, for those wishing to stay over the night to experience a beautiful night and an amazing morning in the mountains (The accommodation is 100% safe and secure).

The tracks we’ve opened to the public form a circuit of approximately 20 kms. (12.5 miles)  comprising a spectrum of  landscapes ranging from areas with poor resource management to well-preserved forests, cornfields, reforested areas, waterfalls, caves and panoramic views.

The meals are prepared by the guides’ wives and eaten at their houses. These meals usually include a trout, sided with beans, some forest plants such as xocoyule (begonia stem), fruit-flavored water, and fresh, hand-made tortillas made out of corn grown by your hosts. Nevertheless, the meals can be adapted to the wishes of the eco-tourist, as long as he/she asks for it in advance (see Traditional peasant meals). By meeting the people and sharing a meal with them, you’ll get a more complete picture of what family and rural life is like here.

What can you expect from the tours?

  • Tranquility (the visitor decides the pace of the tour).
  • Contrast between well-preserved and poorly-preserved places, allowing visitors to grasp local environmental problems.
  • Peasant life.
  • Rural environment.
  • Local gastronomy.
  • Beautiful landscapes, panoramic views of Xalapa.
  • Varied and exuberant flora.

The services included in the tour are:

  • Trained peasant guides with extensive knowledge of the place.
  • Nature interpretation.
  • Traditional peasant meals.
  • Kindness and friendliness.
  • Safety.
  • Accommodation (when previously agreed upon).

Additional services

  • Horse rentals.
  • Bird watching guides (in collaboration with COAX: Club de observación de aves de Xalapa)
  • Calla lilies and other organic products for sale.

 

 

 

Horseback riding

You can also rent a horse (our horses are so gentle that you may ride them even if you’ve never ridden a horse before) for some of our ecotouristic tracks.

Traditional peasant meals

After the tours, the families from the San Pedro Buenavista ejido will welcome you at their places with home-made meals, cooked hygienically with the taste of the countryside.

  • Beans with xocoyul (begonia stem).
  • Xaxana with egg.
  • Free range chicken chilatole.
  • Chocos: salty corn tamales wrapped in caballero leaf (Oreopanax capitatus, Araliácea).
  • Quelite soup.
  • Chichiquelites.
  • Islaba (fruit from Saurauia pedunculata)- flavored water.

And trout, grown in local farms, cooked in different ways:

  • Broth.
  • Grilled.
  • In tamales.
  • Wrapped in totomoxtle (corn leaf).
  • Wrapped in chichilaca leaf.

The one-day tours include one meal per person, but more can be added if the visitor asks in advance.

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