Few other destinations offer as many different types of caves to explore as Mexico. From vertical caves to horizontal caves and from limestone caves to volcanic caves, you can find it all in Mexico.
In Western Mexico, home to Guadalajara, you can find a number of different types of caves to explore, whether you’re exploring for fun or serious study.
For example, if you’re interested in exploring a deep, vertical cave, visit Cerro Grande in Jalisco on the Jalisco-Colima border. More than 100 deep caves have been explored and mapped in this region. Three of these caves are quite deep, at more than 200 meters. The Sociedad Mexicana de Exploraciones Subterraneas has been down 241 feet in El Rusumidero del Pozo Blanco, although there’s still plenty of unexplored adventure for the speleologist in Cerro Grande.
Resumidero de Toxin – also located in Jalisco – is the longest horizontal cave in Western Mexico, measuring 3,005 meters in length. In Michoacanj, the Cueva Del Rio Durazno, which measures 3,000 meters, is the next longest. In addition, near the Pihuamo River and Ferreria River, you can find a number of limestone caves, while near La Concha – a city in Jalisco – you can find a number of marble caves to explore.
One very popular example of a typical limestone cave can be found near Colima City. This is Cueva de Tampumacchay, where you can see The Thousand-Layer Cake – an unusual natural formation – along with a number of giant stalagmites and stalactites. Many openings in this cave remain unexplored, despite the 336 meters of passages that have been surveyed – if you want to go where no man has gone before, it’s definitely worth a look.
Or, if you’ve ever wanted to watch a colony of bats take to the night sky, you can do that at Cueva de Tampumacchay. At dusk, you can see both vampire bats and insectivore bats emerging from the cave in search of their meal for the day – a fascinating sight that’s not for the faint of heart.
In addition, in Jalisco, you can visit a volcanic cave known as Chapuzon Cave. Another popular volcanic cave is Cueva Del Zurdo, which is located in Nayarit. Near Tequila, there’s a multi-level fissure cave called Chiquihuiton that’s been explored down to 413 meters. However, much of this cave still remains unmapped, making it a treat for amateur and professional speleologists alike.
However, as with all caves, there are some dangers to cave exploration in Mexico. Many caves harbor bats, whose guano often contains the fungus which causes histoplasmosis, a serious lung condition. A wide variety of wildlife can also be found in the caves, including spiders and snakes. Vampire bats have been known to bite humans and they can carry rabies. Another problem is poor air quality, due to a lack of air circulation or decomposing guano. In addition, some caves contain the hives of Africanized bees, which can be quite dangerous. However, as long as you take the proper precautions and stick with caves that match your experience level, you can have a safe and enjoyable time caving in Mexico.