TOUR PRICE BASED ON
Dates: January 20-23, 2022
Group Size: 14 Maximum
Age Group: All Ages
We can create a private tour for your family or group. Please contact us for more information.
Hope for the Monarchs 2022
Join Soul of Mexico Tours, Jaime Hernandez Balderas of Animecha Tours and award winning scientist Dr. Pablo F Jaramillo Lopez for a cathartic pilgrimage to the overwintering homeland of the majestic Monarch butterfly. Hike through the Mexican Oyamel forests of El Rosario and Sierra Chincua Biosphere to visit the colonies of millions of monarch butterflies whose phenomenal migration between Canada, the US and Mexico has inspired and intrigued scientists for decades.
The magnificent pine forests where the Monarch Butterflies overwinter are located in Michoacan and Mexico State. Climbing to an altitude of 11,000 feet, even on horseback, can be challenging for some visitors. Please contact us if you have COPD or other challenges breathing at high altitudes, before booking this tour.
Our tour begins and ends in Patzcuaro Michoacan, giving guests the option of travelling by private driver or bus from/to many nearby locations such as Guadalajara, Zihuatanejo, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato City or Queretaro. Morelia also has an international airport, so departure flights are an option there. Many guests arrive each year from Mexico City, then make their way to a different destination following their butterfly tour.
Please contact us to discuss your plans, so we can offer assistance.
BASIC TOUR ITINERARY
1 Night - Patszcuaro, Michoacan: January 20, 2022
1 Night - San Felipe, Michoacan: January 21, 2022
1 Night - Tlalpujahua, Michoacan: January 22, 2022
Departure Day - January 23, 2022
DETAILED TOUR ITINERARY
Presentation & Destinations
HOPE FOR THE MONARCHS LECTURE & DINNER PARTY
Day One: Thursday January 20, 2022
Hotel Location: Patzcuaro, Michoacan
Join soil expert Dr. Pablo Jaramillo Lopez for a fascinating lecture about the Monarch Butterflies at Bistro Monarca Restaurant. This fantastic presentation will raise funds for Dr. Jaramillo’s continued scientific research in the Monarch Biosphere of Michoacan.
Chef Pelon will offer a set menu with options. Drinks and tips are separate.
Please feel free to top-up our fundraiser with your generous donations!
Please Note: You may attend our dinner presentation without attending the tour. The cost is $1200 Pesos per person, which covers your meal, tip and $600 MXN donation to Dr. Pablo Jaramillo Lopez' scientific research in the Monarch Biosphere. Ticket price does not cover drinks & tips.
Guests are welcome to increase your donation, 100% of which goes directly to Dr. Pablo Jaramillo Lopez for his research in the reserves.
HISTORY, GEOLOGY AND ARCHAEOLOGY
Day Two: Friday January 21, 2022
Hotel Location: San Felipe de Alzati, Michoacan
Depart Patzcuaro at 8:30 AM for the special Augustine Convent of Charro. From there, we will visit terracotta potters in Tuxpan, who are famed for their flower pots. Geology enthusiasts will enjoy our next stop, at the Tziranda Caves, while Archaeology lovers will love visiting Zirahuato Archaeological site. We will arrive at our hotel at approximately 5 PM.
PILGRIMAGE TO SIERRA CHINCUA
Day Three: Saturday January 22, 2022
Hotel Location: Angangueo, Michoacan
We will depart San Felipe at 10 AM for the famed Sierra Chincua Butterfly Reserve. This reserve involves a lovely hike, through a beautiful meadow and forest path. Guests may also choose to horseback ride. Return to the parking lot of a fancy charcuterie picnic before heading to Angangueo to explore a beautiful Pueblo Magico.
Day Four: Sunday January 23, 2022
Hotel Location: N/A
This morning we will depart Angangueo by 10 AM, stopping at the ruins of Hacienda de Jesus de Nazareno. We will return to Patzcuaro in the late afternoon.
If you are not returning to Patzcuaro, please contact us in advance so we can make arrangements for your transportation by private driver from Hacienda de Jesus de Nazareno.
WE HOPE YOU ENJOY THIS IMPORTANT FUNDRAISER, AND WILL JOIN US AGAIN!
WHY TOUR WITH US?
Is this Tour for You?
Our Hope for the Monarchs Fundraiser is an educational and fun eco-science experience that also includes some history, fabulous architecture, geology and a Pueblo Magico high up in the mountains! What's not to love? We will spend our first evening enjoying a visual presentation, our second night in an indigenous community, and our third night in a small, idyllic village that is hunched up a mountainside. For such a short tour, this one covers a lot of interests.
BE A TEAM PLAYER
Respect Local Customs
Please respect our departure times, so our schedule remains fluid. We ask guests to switch up the seating arrangements in the van, so everyone has an opportunity to enjoy a window view.
Please respect the locals, and remember we are visitors here. Acknowledging sales-people, and asking permission before taking photographs is a sign of respect.
COVID-19 UPDATE: Out of respect for the local Mexicans and all of our guests, proof of Covid-19 Vaccination is required for our tours. Thank you for your cooperation. We will take everyone's temperature before boarding the van in the AM. All guests and team members are expected to use hand sanitizer upon entering the vehicle, and wear a face mask over mouth & nose for the duration of our tours and events. These health protocols are subject to changes.
Based on Cost Sharing
We can accept a total of 14 Guests for this tour. Thank you for supporting Dr. Pablo Jaramillo Lopez and his research about the survival of this phenomenal migration. Accommodations will cost approximately $1500 per night, per room. If you are a family of 4, or traveling solo, this will affect the price depending on your needs. Please contact us for more information so we can get you an accurate quote.
6 Minimum: $15,500 MXN + Accommodations
7 Guests: $14,000 MXN + Accommodations
8 Guests: $12,000 MXN + Accommodations
9 Guests: $11,000 MXN + Accommodations
10 Guests: $10,000 MXN + Accommodations
11 Guests: $9,500 MXN + Accommodations
12 Guests: $9,000 MXN + Accommodations
13 Guests: $8,500 MXN + Accommodations
14 Guests: $8,000 MXN + Accommodations
All prices are in Mexican Pesos
Please use the currency converter below for your own currency.
MEET DR. PABLO JARAMILLO LOPEZ
Dr. Jaramillo studied agriculture in his native country of Ecuador before completing his doctorate in biology at the University of
Western Ontario in Canada. His dissertation research focused on reusing human byproducts (organic residues) to create a soil amendment to improve soil conditions for agricultural and forestry applications.
In Ontario, Dr. Jeremy McNeil introduced Dr. Jaramillo to the incredible monarch butterfly migration that originates there. Dr. McNeil encouraged Dr. Jaramillo to apply for a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. Dr. Jaramillo’s postdoctoral led him to his current position in the department of agroecology at the Research Institute for Ecosystems and Sustainability at the National
Autonomous University of Mexico in Morelia, Michoacan.
Having worked with late etymologist, Dr. Lincoln Brower, who made the monarch butterfly migration known worldwide, Dr. Jaramillo has a unique perspective on monarch butterfly biology and conservation. His philosophy is that the local people must be educated about the relationship between the monarchs and the forest where they live, as a means for safeguarding the health of the butterfly forest, which has been threatened by illegal logging. Dr. Jaramillo’s postdoctoral project was a turning point in his life. The project focused on improving the soil ecosystem for more efficient reforestation practices in the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve. During the process, Dr. Jaramillo collaborated with an indigenous community that lives inside the Reserve. Through the project, 94% seedling survival rates were achieved, and the forest ecosystem was restored in just four years. Collaborating with local communities and promoting their well-being is the only way to effectively conserve the forest ecosystem that monarchs choose as their overwintering grounds, as it has curbed deforestation and rendered new economic means for former loggers. This project earned Dr. Jaramillo the 2014 Pollinator Advocate Award which has encouraged local efforts to continue finding ways to conserve the forests that host monarch butterflies during the winter.
Visiting the monarch butterfly overwintering colonies with Dr. Jaramillo is a wonderful experience not only focused on learning more about these incredible insects but also to see how all of us can help conserve and protect these iconic winged creatures.
This fundraiser will help Dr. Jaramillo fund his research. Thank you for participating in this wonderful project, and please promote this to anyone you know who may be interested in supporting initiatives to help the majestic Monarch Butterfly.
MEET YOUR GUIDES
LICENSED NATIONAL GUIDE
Jaime Balderas was born and raised in the Lake Patzcuaro region of Michoacan, has been a guide for over 18 years and is the proud owner of Animecha Tours. Jaime completed the accredited tour guide training course offered by the SECTUR of the state of Michoacan, and is constantly updating his education through history courses, tourism seminars, and personal research. Jaime is a member of Toastmasters International, which has allowed him to improve his communication skills to provide guests with an enriched understanding about the local culture, history, architecture, art forms, cuisine, archaeology and important cultural protocols. Fluent in Spanish, English and proficient in the P'urepecha language, experiencing the Lake Patzcuaro region of Michoacan with Jaime Balderas is an educational experience you won't soon forget. We are truly pleased to be working with Jaime for this Dia de Muertos experience, due to his thorough research, ease of engaging academic perspectives in an easy-to-understand communication style and his ethical approaches to cultural sensitivity.
TOUR COORDINATOR & ART DEALER
With a background as a sales person and dealer of Indigenous art for over 30 years in Canada, Jennifer Bjarnason has been exploring Mexico for many years, and is a resident of Michoacan. With a passion for indigenous and cultural art forms, she was first hired as an assistant and tour coordinator at Casona Rosa B&B in Morelia, where she began organizing art and butterfly tours for guests of the hotel. With a passion for indigenous narratives, cultural art, history, nature and travel, Jennifer coordinates scientist-led eco-fundraisers for Monarch Butterfly Research, art-collection tours in the Lake Patzcuaro region, workshops with artists in authentic villages, Dia de Muertos experiences in Michoacan and an extensive exploration of La Ruta de Plata - or The Silver Road, which was a major intercontinental trade route of international importance. Jennifer first met Jaime Balderas in 2015 on her first trip to Patzcuaro, and is very pleased to be working with such a dedicated guide, and is looking forward to inspiring guests through yet another life-changing experience!
Accommodations are separate, but we will assist you
All Meals are separate with the exception of:
Dinner Presentation at Bistro Monarca Restaurant
Charcuterie Picnic at Sierra Chincua Butterfly Reserve
All Beverages & Tips are separate
Private Transport Included
Horseback Riding in Reserves is Optional
Ancient City of Zirahuato
Monarch Butterfly Biosphere
Presentation by Dr. Pablo Jaramillo Lopez
$600 MXN Per Person for
100% of all collected is given directly
to this fund
Night arrivals may like to opt for a beautiful welcome basket,
so you can enjoy a picnic, wine or beer upon arrival. If your flight is arriving after 8 PM, consider this comforting option. Your driver will bring it to the airport or bus station, and you can return the wares at your convenience.
Picnic baskets include a spreadable and hard cheese, crackers, salami, olive tapenade, nuts, and jelly. We provide you with glasses, plates, small bowls, cutlery, a cork screw and napkins.
If you would like local wine, beer or mezcal, we ask for two weeks advance notice to put in an order. We will send you a list of what we have available!
If you would like to book any appointments while you are here, we can arrange for some self-pampering for you. Please contact us in advance to ensure we can get you an appointment.
Services Available include:
Need something else? Just email us with your request!
We require a 20% non-refundable deposit to confirm your reservation.
Full payment is due by December 20, 2021
Cancellations made after December 20, 2021 are non-refundable.
You may transfer your tour to a friend or family member at your own discretion, so long as they are in the right age group for this tour.
We are not an insurance company. Please make sure you read the fine print on your airline reservations, and purchase travel and medical insurance.
SUGGESTED KIT LIST
We highly recommend packing lightly, with a layered capsule wardrobe that includes a warm sweater and thick socks. We recommend warm pajamas for Angangueo, as the high altitude means very cold nights and mornings.
We will do a substantial amount of walking, so comfortable shoes are a must. If you have a cozy wrap, we suggest bringing one for the evenings.
SUGGESTED ADDITIONS TO YOUR REGULAR LIST
Small Back Pack
Smart Phone for slow-motion videos of the butterflies
We will be updating this soon, with more PDF files containing information about this tour