Beyond the Magic of Sierra Gorda

Avatar photo
The Monkey's Hand

We travel like a seed in the wind to that other place, regenerated and surprising. As we walk, we get to know and from La Mano del Mono, We value those processes that share a common purpose and seek to preserve life. Well said Galeano: Lots of little people, in little places, doing little things, can change the world. A world that depends on all of us and of which we want to be a part, a yearning that leads us not only to dream, but to commit ourselves to everything around us.

This reading is a space for recognizing the work done, the hard work that many communities and groups carry out in their territories. They are communities of the Sierra Gorda, women and men who resist the negative impact of many phenomena and who every day are committed to the design of caring for others.

The Sierra Gorda, as its name suggests, is generous and opulent. A territory where the humidity of the winds and clouds from the Gulf of Mexico extend from Coahuila to Puebla, the Sierra Madre Oriental. In it, we observe a great mosaic of ecosystems and species where latitude, altitude and rainfall patterns, often conditioned by the mountains themselves, manage to make a diverse, broken and elevated mountain range. Its magic can also be appreciated from the air, a great uplift where limestone, deep canyons and peaks exceed 3,700 meters high.

There is no doubt about its unique magic, but the most incredible thing is to meet wonderful people. So we invite you to take an immersion to learn the story behind all the processes that develop the allies of La Mano del Mono:

The community of the Sierra Gorda Ecological Group is an example of perseverance and teamwork. Today, they offer us responsible and inclusive tourism. They have the Sabino Stampthanks to the quality of community-based tourism. A collective that generates opportunities for the communities of the region, through various services that offer the best combination of nature, culture and learning, while employing local people, willing to share their knowledge and richness of their traditions.

Learn more about the Sierra Gorda Ecological Group:

See more

Among its community, we can meet people such as Mr. Primitivo Enriquez who initiated the family project of the Ecotourism Parador Rincón Ojo de Agua Cabins. A place where more than just a place to rest, it is a whole life experience. It has been conserving not only the ecosystem for more than 22 years, but also working for the well-being of the people and the biodiversity of those who inhabit it. Its management has made it possible to organize a committee made up of local families, who also work on a rotating basis to maintain the cabins. A dream that has become a reality, thanks to the sustainable tourismThe project, which was originally dedicated to logging, now seeks to protect its forest, while promoting its conservation.

Primitivo is an example of persistence. Its mission has allowed it to generate important impacts:

"I used to plant corn and beans, but we were very cramped, very poor. It was a place that was very finished. At the beginning they didn't like my project, they were suspicious... and now we are very happy because we have this job, we have money to help our families. It brought us good things and at the same time allowed us to value what we have and above all to take care of our nature. My dream has always been to take advantage of the forest and with the cabins came that opportunity. For me the forest is a richness, it is a blessing; we have learned to value it and we will improve so that the new ones continue working. We love our work, because it is our mission. For us, respect is about respecting the forest," he exclaimed. 

Sierra Gorda

The locals of the Sierra Gorda are very proud to call it home. It has so many treasures that it will take several days to discover them all. From the majestic views offered by the Mirador de Cuatro Palos or the Sótano del Barro, to its dazzling biodiversity. In addition, you will be able to enjoy its famousembroidery aller At every step of the way there is something different to discover!

If you are one of those who love to delight your senses, along the way you will encounter Roberta Ramirez, who is part of the Comedor La Encina entrepreneur dedicated to delight the palate of those nationals and foreigners who are looking for the typical of the place. There you will be served the classic refried beans or beans from the pot, potatoes in sauce, egg with chili, freshly made tortillas, sweet bread, coffee and different types of teas (lemon grass, mint, pennyroyal, among others). An empowering venture that works to unite efforts, resources and knowledge in the fight against exclusion, disintegration and ignorance of culture.

At the Comedor La Encina, not just one woman is empowered, but an entire community. More than just going to eat, it is about recognizing the great work that women do to create social fabric. The creation and strengthening of their networks is also a space for meeting and learning together, a fundamental resource that unites and contributes to the care of culture, biodiversity and territory:

"I used to dedicate myself to the home, my children and my husband. Through our dining room we can meet people who come from far away and make food that our visitors like. One of the best experiences we have had is that we have learned to be united, to know each other, to feel supported, and to live with people. I like living with more people and at the same time it has benefited us economically. The support of our families is important, so our families are happy. I did not have academic studies and we can develop this, even if we do not have them. Our dream is that we always have to aspire for more every day. We would like to see the dining room grow bigger and be a legacy that we leave to our children". She said.

Now, their culture is so unique that you can't miss the great work done by the women of the Embroidery Workshop with nature motifs. Fabrics with beautiful strokes and a fine work is what offers their locals and where all those who operate it are owners of their microenterprise.

They began in 2004 and today 30 women work in their own facilities, located an hour and a half from Jalpan de Serra. They are all neighbors of La Colgada and surrounding communities, so some of them have to walk several minutes to get there. Nevertheless, it is a journey they are willing to make, especially when it is an opportunity to share with other women their creativity, passion, and at the same time, learn how to run a business. At the workshop, you will meet Alma Delia who started knowing the business with his mother, when he was 13 years old:

"When my mother couldn't come, I attended the workshop for her. My mother took care of her blankets so they wouldn't get dirty, and she did her best to deliver her work in perfect condition. Today I feel good, because I am doing something important, since we are rescuing our ancestral culture". - She expressed. 

There is no doubt that nature tourism is an agent that contributes to sustainable development. "It is everyone's responsibility to contribute to make tourism an engine of environmental and social transformation. Today we have the opportunity to migrate from traditional tourism practices to sustainable practices in order to continue enjoying what we love to do most.

Enjoy sustainable tourism:

Visit their website

From La Mano del Mono we recognize the work of our allies Grupo Ecológico Sierra Gorda, who over the last few years have dedicated themselves to regenerating the ecosystem and positively transforming the lives of women and men in the mountain communities of Querétaro.

With our Market Ready methodology, we have been able to work hard to facilitate connections between communities, commercial partners and specialized markets. We work to generate favorable conditions for the development of rural businesses dedicated to sustainable tourism, favoring their sustainable practices and improving people's quality of life.

Join the Local Hands Network