Tapalpa combines colonial charm with a picturesque setting in the Jalisco Highlands. Admire historic architecture in the town centre and soak in the vibrant local culture at markets and “fonditas” family-run restaurants. Venture outside the city to discover lush pine forests, tumbling waterfalls and ancient petroglyphs.
Things to do in Tapalpa
Cobbled streets and colonial architecture have earned Tapalpa status as an official ‘Pueblos Magico’. Walk around the well-preserved town centre and admire whitewashed adobe houses covered with bright pink bougainvillea flowers. The Parish of San Antonio soars over the town square and dates to the 1600s.
Tapalpa invites you to explore the dramatic landscapes of the Jalisco Highlands. Hiking trails wind through sun-dappled pine forests and lead to scenic viewpoints. Visit the Valle de las Enigmas to see the famous Las Piedrotas rock formations, a series of enormous boulders marooned in grass-covered pastures. Nearby are smaller rocks decorated with ancient petroglyphs.
Follow the steep, rocky trail to Salto del Nogal, a cascading waterfall surrounded by lush greenery. Work up a sweat on the hike, then cool off in the emerald-green pool at the foot of the falls. Pack picnic supplies and enjoy lunch at the falls before heading back to the trailhead.
Tapalpa is home to a vibrant artisan community, making it a great place to purchase traditional crafts. You’ll find everything from hand-painted pottery to woven textiles and beaded jewellery at colourful souvenir shops. In addition to ceramics, Jalisco artisans are famous for handicrafts like blown glass and “serapes” rainbow-coloured striped blankets.
Getting around Tapalpa
Tapalpa is compact and easy to get around on foot. The town is in Jalisco, a three-hour drive from Guadalajara. Rental cars provide the flexibility to visit Tapalpa and explore surrounding sights and attractions in the Jalisco Highlands at your own pace. Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla International Airport is a 2.5-hour drive away.