Sierra Chincua
Destino Magical Town Magical Town


Visit the monarch butterfly sanctuaries, admire its houses with red tile roofs, and enjoy its perpetually green mountains.

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What Makes It Magical

This town has the best location for visiting the monarch butterfly sanctuaries, and it is also a classic example of a Mexican mining town with grand churches, houses with red tile roofs, and perennially green mountains. Having been one of the region’s main mining towns left it with an impressive mix of architectural styles.

Why You Should Go

The Monarch Butterfly Sanctuaries

  • They are part of the Reserva de la Biosfera Mariposa Monarca, which encompasses 216 square miles; 70 percent of this biosphere reserve is in Michoacán.
  • Their unique conditions help these Lepidoptera survive the winter: cool temperatures, clouds and fog that provide them with water and humidity, and trees that protect them from snow and hail.
  • Both sanctuaries are home to millions of monarch butterflies that migrate here every year from the Great Lakes in the United States and Canada to eastern Michoacán. The most amazing part of their journey is that they have never experienced the trip, but are guided by a mysterious collective memory.
  • Sierra Chincua and El Rosario are considered one of the four natural beauties and have been declared World Heritage Sites by the UNESCO.

At the Very Least

Visit the Sierra Chincua and El Rosario sanctuaries between November and March to see monarch butterflies.

Don’t Miss

  1. Silently admire the sanctuary of El Rosario.
  2. Take pictures of the town from the lookouts.
  3. Rock climb or hike in nearby mountains.