Winter forests covered in butterflies


Family - Outdoors

The sun rose hours ago and the mist in the forest is dissolving, but the morning feels chilly at 3,500m altitude. Very soon it will be Christmas time, and while in other latitudes the forests turn white with the snow, here in Michoacan the forests get covered by butterflies. Magic? Not quite. It´s monarch butterflies. They migrate to Mexico every year to escape the cold in the Northern part of the contient, a unique migration in the insect world.

In October the first monarch butterflies arrive, and until December the sky will be covered with millions of butterflies feeding to survive the winter and searching for the place where they will settle for the cold months. Between December and January the fir forests of the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve get covered in orange and black, the colour of monarchs. In this forests between the states of Michoacan and Mexico hundreds of millions of monarchs hibernate to protect themselves from the low temperatures and winter weather.

Enormous clusters of thousands of butterflies hang from the branches, while other butterflies hold on to the tree trunks to find shelter during the coldest months. If they fall to the ground and get wet they will die.

To admire this natural wonder at the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve, declared a World Heritage Site, you may visit one of the three sanctuaries in Michoacan: El Rosario, the largest of all, Sierra Chincua, or Senguio, very near the Magic Town of Angangueo. All the three sanctuaries offer all the services you need for an unforgettable experience.


We recommend

  • Come Monday through Friday, when there are very few visitors.
  • Bring warm clothing, mountain shoes and sunscreen.
  • Come back in February, when the butterflies wake up and fly all over the forest.

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Live it

  • In the morning


  • #family
  • #nature
  • #Monarch
  • #WorldHeritage
  • #WeAreMichoacan
  • #TheSoulofMexico
  • #Mexico
  • #picoftheday
  • #igersmx
  • #happy
  • #awesome

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Angangueo, Angangueo


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