Reserva de la biosfera de las mariposas monarcas

Heading east from San Miguel de Allende the next stop is the Monarch butterfly reserves in northeast Michoacan. This is where all of the Monarch butterflies that head south from Chicago at the end of summer end up for the winter. Pretty amazing when you think about it. These are not the same butterflies that started the journey, it takes three generations of butterflies to make it here to their winter spot in Mexico. They’ll stay here until spring then hatch a super generation which will make it all the way back to Chicago.

It is a steep and winding road up to the park entrance around 11,000′.  I pick up a guide at the entrance and he hops into the passenger seat and guides me up the couple of KM of very rough road to the parking lot. From there we set out in search of las mariposas.


My young guide speaks zero English so there is not much conversation on the way to the butterflies after my tourist Spanish is used up.

I’m surprised the butterflies like it this high, at 11,000′ it is very cold around 48F even in the sun. Great view of the surrounding countryside.


After a mile or so we arrive at one of the butterfly spots, it’s amazing seeing them flying everywhere.


The butterflies are clumped together on trees to keep warm, those are butterflies not leaves.


It’s around noon and they are waking up in the sun and flying around. It’s a great feeling just looking up and watching them fly.

Click below for video



4 thoughts on “Reserva de la biosfera de las mariposas monarcas”

  1. Holy cow. I love butterflies. How incredibly amazing!! What a cool experience. I have a friend in Wisconsin who….breeds them? What do you call someone who goes through the process of raising butterflies? Very cool pictures and video.


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