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What to do in Zacatlan de las Manzanas

In the Sierra Norte de Puebla is one of the six magical towns of Puebla that we had the fortune to visit and, as many already know, it became one of our favorites. Let’s talk about Zacatlán de las Manzanas.

Zacatlan de las Manzanas is a really quiet town. What do I mean? Although it has a lot to do and to know, it has certain spaces where you can give yourself moments of tranquility (if you want to).

Here everything you need to know to travel to Zacatlán de las Manzanas!

Top Things To Do in Zacatlan de las Manzanas

We will share with you those activities or touristic places in Zacatlán de las Manzanas that surprised us and, according to our tastes, we consider the best.

Eating Cheese Bread

Cheese bread is one of the typical foods of Zacatlan. There are different types, we tried 5 breads and our favorite was the “pillow” bread.

We recommend that you try several as each has its own distinctive flavor.

This delicacy is typical of Zacatlan and believe me when I tell you that you can’t leave without trying one of the various presentations of cheese bread.

Taking pictures in the Vitromurals: Zacatlan of my Memories

Do you know the expression “a picture says more than a thousand words”? Well, these vitromurals say more than a million. This series of murals depicts, through the cutting and pasting of tiles, mirrors and other materials, images of an ancient Zacatlan.

Each one conveys a story and, in some, you can even be part of it. If you are lucky you might find the artisans working on their pieces. Definitely one more thing to do in Zacatlan de las Manzanas.

Vitromural Zactlán of my Memories
Vitromural of the ZĂłcalo some time ago

To observe the Vitromurals of the Pantheon of Zacatlan.

On one side of the ravine of the goldfinches are the predecessors to the murals “Zacatlan of my memories”. These murals are characterized by the great colorfulness and the same technique, they represent religious and pre-Hispanic passages and part of the culture and history of Zacatlan.

This is another attraction in Zacatlan that is worth taking the time to visit.

Visit the Barranca de los Jilgueros Viewpoint

One of the main things to do in Zacatlan de las Manzanas is to walk along the Barranca de los Jilgueros and admire the thick green, contrasting with the sky, the horsetail waterfall and some houses in the distance.

Many people talk about the glass viewpoint which, indeed, is an experience; however, if I am very honest, the view offered by this viewpoint with a semi-transparent floor is not very different from the one you can admire from anywhere in the ravine.

Strolling in the zĂłcalo

Whether you just want to walk around, sit on a bench and watch the people go by, look at the sky, admire the floral clock or have a coffee in one of the cafes in this space, strolling in the zocalo is one of the things to do in Zacatlan de las Manzanas.

Back to eating CHEESE BREAD

Yes guys, I will insist, you have to try the cheese bread! This from someone who became a fan with just one bite.

La Primavera Regional Wine Museum

In this small museum you will be given a tour of the La Primavera wine factory where you will be able to see the difference in the process in the past and today as well as the tools used for its elaboration from the handling of the fruit to its aging. At the end you will be able to taste the wines of your interest.

Shopping in the Artisan Corridor

Underneath the Mirador de la Barranca de los Jilgueros you will find a huge hallway where, according to what we were told, on Saturdays and Sundays artisans and producers set up to show their products, handicrafts and/or liquors.

We went on a Wednesday and saw a maximum of 10 stalls, so if you are interested, we recommend going on a weekend.

Visiting and camping at Piedras Encimadas Valley

An hour and a half from the center is the valley of the encimadas stones. In this valley north of Zacatlan you will find all kinds of rock formations that, if you stand in the right place and with enough imagination, will take the shape of something or someone.

We did not go to this place because we preferred to do other things, but many people we talked to told us that it was very cool and worth camping to see the stars.

Take a photo at the Floral Clock

On your walk in the zĂłcalo you will undoubtedly see the famous floral clock, which, in fact, was made in Alberto Olvera’s watchmaker’s shop, El Centenario. It is an excellent spot to take pictures with the Templo de San Pedro in the background, a beautiful sunset and the typical atmosphere of the zocalo.

Bicentennial Automata Show

This show takes place on the façade of Alberto Olvera’s clock museum, no less. It takes place on weekends at 14:00 and 21:00 but what does it have to do with clocks? These automatons work with the mechanism of a clock, similar to a CUCU.

Taste apples and products derived from these fruits

Definitely one of the things to eat in Zacatlan are its apples. You will be surprised to discover that the apples you are used to are not so natural and taste very different.

Apples are not the typical reddish apple you see in supermarkets. There are different types of apples and that is why you should take advantage of your visit to eat them.

Besides tasting the fruit per se, you must try the ciders, wines, juices and soft drinks made with the house specialty: apples.

What to do in Zacatlan de las Manzanas in 1 day

If you only have 1 day to visit Zacatlan de las Manzanas we suggest you use the Zacatlan and Chignahuapan Excursion from Puebla City. With this excursion you will be able to see the most important of 2 magical towns in only 1 day.

See what Zacatlan Puebla is like and the activities you can do in 1 day with our experiential video

🤓 Why is it called Zacatlán de las Manzanas?

Because Zacatlan is one of the main apple producers in Mexico. The main economic activity of this magical town comes from the cultivation and harvesting of apples, which leads to the production of wines, liquors, creams and, mainly, cider.

Places to visit in Zacatlan

What to visit in Zacatlan and what are the must-see tourist attractions? These are the must-sees:

Tuliman Waterfalls

In this park you can be amazed by the three falls of the same waterfall, feel like you are part of a movie like Tarzan or King Kong and stroll through the lush surroundings of this place.

This tourist attraction is definitely a must-see in Zacatlan de las Manzanas, so I share with you the video of our experience to give you an idea of how it is and here is a definitive guide to visit it: Tuliman Waterfalls: How to get there, Costs and What to do.

El Centenario Clock Factory and Alberto Olvera’s Clock Museum

Clock Factory and Museum
Alberto Olvera’s Clock Factory and Museum

The Relojes El Centenario factory is not just any factory; it is recognized as the first monumental clock factory in Latin America and has created pieces that not only tell the time, but do so on a large scale, automatically, and some even play a certain melody at a certain time.

You should definitely add the factory to your list of places to visit in Zacatlan de las Manzanas.

After the visit to the clock factory, continue your visit to the clock museum, where you can see the evolution of what we know today as a clock, the mechanism and the ways in which time was measured or “the time” was known in ancient times.

Cider Factory

Cider Factory in Zacatlán
Photo at Fábrica de Sidra y Jugo el Convento 1567

One of the main economic activities in Zacatlan is the production of apples, so you can not miss the opportunity to visit a factory where they work. The factories are usually open and offer tours, tastings and explanations to tourists to learn about this industry.

We visited the El Convento 1567 factory, but if you would like to visit any other, I recommend that you research their days and hours of operation.

What’s in Zacatlan de las Manzanas: Definitive Guide

To make the most of your visit we suggest you review this quick and definitive guide where you can see what there is in Zacatlan and what you should visit.

Where to Sleep

After researching hotels in Zacatlan, these are the ones we recommend.

San Miguel House

Casa San Miguel Boutique Hotel & Spa

View Price

For the luxurious traveler

Vista Zacatlan

Hotel Vista Zacatlan

View Price

The ideal choice for couples, tourists and families

Hotel del Rosario

HOtel del Rosario Zacatlan

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The economical option: Good, nice and cheap

🏨 If you need accommodation, we recommend looking here 🏨

How to get to Zacatlán de las Manzanas

Zacatlán de las Manzanas is a magical town located at the beginning of the Sierra Norte de Puebla. It is 2 hours from Pachuca, 3 hours from Mexico City and Jalapa and 2.5 hours from the city of Puebla.

If you are in the city of Puebla you can take the excursion to Zacatlan and Chignahuapan. With this tour you can visit 2 magical towns in 1 day.

To arrive by bus

bus tickets

If you don’t feel like driving, buses to Zacatlan leave from the North terminal of the CDMX and stop at Indios Verdes and take you to the Central Terminal or to the Zacatlan deviation stop.

It is a bit difficult to find information or tickets for this route on the internet. The good thing is that we were in that dilemma of dialing, asking and going to the central offices to verify the information and be able to give it to you.

From Mexico City you have two options

  • Take the bus that leaves from the north terminal of the CDMX every hour from 6am to 9pm and arrives directly to Zacatlan, or
  • Take a bus from CDMX to the CAPU (Central de Autobuses de Puebla), take a stroll around this beautiful place and then take off from the same bus station to Zacatlan.

From Puebla

From the CAPU in Puebla, there are also trucks that take you to the site and run most of the day.

From the CAPU you can take an Atah that takes you directly to Zacatlán de las Manzanas.

â–· To get by bus to this destination, we recommend you to look for your tickets here

By own car

If you are lucky enough to have a car, just type “Zacatlan” in Google Maps and you will arrive at the magical town of apples.

Depending on where you are, these are the routes you can take:

  • From the CDMX you can get there through federal highways 150, 119 and 121.
  • From Puebla, by Federal Highway 121 and 119.
  • From Tlaxcala, 119 fits you well.

How much does it cost to go to Zacatlan de las Manzanas?

BackpackerTouristLuxury Traveler
Budget per Person per day83014204020
Budget in dls4070200
Prices are approximate and are intended to give an idea of the travel budget, they may vary or change over time.

Remember that from the city of Puebla you can take the 1 day excursion to Zacatlan and Chignahuapan. The price is quite good and it is one of the best ways to get the most out of your time and money.

Weather in Zacatlan de las Manzanas

The climate of the town of apples is very pleasant; however, remember what I told you previously. During the day it is usually hot and in the afternoon (4-5-6pm) it usually cools down, so you need to be covered.

The hottest months are May, June and July, the clearest days are between July and October, and the months in which there is usually a lot of fog wherever you turn and, therefore, cold, are from November to February.

Best time to travel

If you want to experience the harvest season and see the orchards full of apples, we recommend going between July and early September so that you can experience apple time in all its splendor.

If you want to take advantage of all the cultural and commercial activity of the Apple Fair, you can do it in August, but be prepared for the heat.

If you are not the type that likes crowded places, you can go any other month. We went in early October and everything was very relaxed.

If you don’t have a car, be prepared to walk, but don’t panic! The distances between one attraction and another are not that long. The farthest thing from the center is the barranca de los jilgueros and the vitromurals, but believe me they are totally worth it.

What to wear

  • Comfortable footwear to be able to walk among the attractions and not hurt your feet
  • Light clothing for the day and a sweater or jacket for the evening. Remember to leave your accommodation with him! Around 16-17hrs they usually cool down quite a bit.
  • Bring sunscreen to wear every day because even if it is cool, sometimes the sun hits hard.

See more destinations in our guide to Puebla

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