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Published: April 30th 2014
This sign is your only indication before you descend down into the brown valley
After seeing the pictures on the website (http://www.elgeiser.com.mx/
) and hearing about it from friends, I was eager to take a weekend trip out to the hot springs area of Hidalgo. I love the water but I can't stand it when it's too cold for me to even get in and enjoy it. I'm not 9 years old anymore jumping into the ice cold springs of California. Give me sun, shade, and warm water now!
We left Nicole's house around 9am and took some lovely bad roads from Queretaro to Hidalgo. I can't believe the condition of some of these roads. Nicole said that the worst part is where the two states border each other and neither state wants to take responsibility for the road so everyone suffers. Not good for tourism but the locals are probably used to it and it wouldn't stop me from coming here again.
El Geiser is situated a few miles out of town so you follow the signs and then wander down a dirt road to the bottom of a valley. Your eyes are greeted by the green vegetation that surrounds the park, an oasis in the middle of dry,
The entrance to the park
A narrow road down the canyon that opens up into huge parking lots
brown hills. There is a huge parking lot if you drove your own vehicle and there is no parking fee. There are lots of men running around with wheelbarrows to help bring all of your stuff in for a small fee. There were several tour buses parked in another parking lot with everyone unloading their stuff and forming a line. I imagine that quite a few people come up from Mexico City for the weekend. There are several food stands on the right hand side before you walk into the gates so you can get anything you need to eat or drink there.
Admission was 100$ pesos per person and they put a bracelet around your wrist. This allows you unlimited entrances until noon the following day. When I was researching the other parks in the area, they all charge you a second day's entrance fee if you stay in their hotels or camp on their grounds so this is a huge bonus to me! There is an inspection as you walk through the gate and our beer cans were confiscated but they gave us a receipt so we could pick them back up on our way
Lots of different areas for camping are scattered across the park
out, that's a first! There are multiple areas for camping throughout the grounds. It's very informal. If you see a piece of grass, or ground for that matter, that you like, you just pop up your tent. There are signs indicating if tents aren't allowed in that area but it was very few.
The water park is composed of numerous levels as the water is piped up to the top of the park and it flows down from one pool to the next. We walked up to one of the higher levels as most of the tour buses had older occupants in them and we figured they wouldn't venture as high up and we were right. We found a palapa in a quiet corner and dropped all our gear and ice chest. Nicole hailed one of the many park attendant's and he brought us 6 chairs at 10 pesos each in exchange for holding onto her ID card. The palapa was great for shade, had a sturdy concrete table that was big enough for all our food and drinks, and even offered an electric outlet for charging your phone or playing your stereo, and had a light
The View from the Top
We climbed up to the rope bridge at the very top to look down over the park
bulb in the top if you were planning on staying up past dusk.
There was a restaurant on the next level up and the prices were actually pretty good considering our distance from the nearest town. There is no alcohol to be found anywhere in this park unless you managed to smuggle it in yourself. I might recommend putting the rum in an apple juice bottle...We enjoyed a few cold beverages without any issues. Some people brought up their tents and set them up right on the concrete paths that lead from one level to the next so it was very informal like I said. Some people had even hauled in their own little barbecue's and were grilling away the steak and chicken. Now I know for next time!
The pools are different depths and temperatures depending on where and when the water has been piped in. I learned the painful way that 60C is extremely hot!! The lower pools have slides and fountains for the children to play in. The geyser is piped into one area with caves and benches so you can sit in the hot vapor and feel like you're in
Our Little Piece of Paradise
Jose and I enjoying the water, each other, and great company!
an outdoor sauna. We didn't last long in that one, way too hot and authentic for me! I wonder if there is some spiritual aspect to the geyser as I saw a few older folks stripping down to their skivvies and scooping the water up to pour over themselves. We walked over to check out the hotel accommodations since we didn't have anything locked in for that night. They are basic rooms, no frills, and decent price. We looked at a double room with no bathroom for 350 pesos and it goes up from there depending on whether you want a toilet and/or shower. Each hall has a bathroom in it as well as there being facilities on the grounds as well. They were all booked up though so that will have to be for another time.
That evening, we left around dusk and found a motel just outside the park. The owner had been hanging out at the entrance talking to the security staff and he offered to match their prices and he even took us there personally. We got a double room with bathroom for 600 pesos which is the same price that the park
Breaded Chicken Breast
Jose ordered the chicken breast meal for 70 pesos
The next morning, we woke up and headed back down to the park so the girls could play in the water again before we moved on to the next park. We ate breakfast at one of the food stands before heading in. The service was good and the prices were fair so it worked out well for us. Sometimes you never know when you're going to find cornflakes for 60 pesos or a full meal deal. The girls played in the lower water park until noon and then we packed it up and headed on to las Grutas de Tolantongo.
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