DISCOVER THE BEAUTY OF
FORTIN de las FLORES, VERACRUZ, MEXICO
March - May - June - July - August - October - November
Fortin de las Flores (pronounced like the number fourteen) is located in a valley along the Gulf Coast approximately 700 miles south of the tip of Texas, 60 miles inland from the Gulf or about 180 miles east of Mexico City. In actuality it is a 2 hour and 40 minute flight from Miami and about a 3 hour or so trip by turnpike to Fortin.
Fortin is located in an area rich with natural beauty including some remnant rainforest and spectacular views particularly Mt. Orizaba, a permanently snow covered dormant volcano, and the 3rd highest point in North America! Temperature in Fortin varies from 52 to 85 degrees year round. For Floridians a light jacket is often welcomed even in August. With abundant rainfall, the area is always green and lush with orchids and bromeliads growing on the trees as well as ferns, heliconias, begonias, gingers, etc., etc. We've counted more than 100 different kinds of butterflies on our farm in the summer including the beautiful blue Morpho. We suspect there are many more species here.
Depending on the weather (we are in the rainy season during the summer, much like South Florida) we will plan our itinerary accordingly:
We will visit the local markets in Fortin and Cordoba and the Teravella pottery factory in Pueblo and possibly the more touristy shops in Veracruz.
A day or two excursion to a caldera (extinct volcanic vent from Orizaba) with pristine rain forest in the center is a highlight you won’t want to miss. We just discovered this, and it is less than an hour from our "finca". Few Mexicans even know of it. The more adventurous may elect to rapel to the bottom by rope as we easily circle the natural rim Mother Nature has so conveniently provided.
We will try to visit a unique waterfall that drops down into a cave, and goes underground for more than 70 miles before resurfacing. There is also a substantial cave in the area as well as a great swimming spot.
Another exciting adventure will be to go to the base camp at 14,400 feet of the 18,800 foot Peak of Mt Orizaba. From here we will see spectacular views of the valleys below and the snow covered peak that is above us. High elevation begonias and fuchsias are here. A warm jacket, hat and gloves are in order at the top. The more adventurous may elect to mountain bike down. We did on the last trip and it was great fun. The area just below reminds one of an 1840's boom town, with several villages, loaded with little kids. This will be a great time to hand out candy and clothes. It is so non-touristy, they do not beg for money.
On some trips an overnight stay in Catemaco is in order. This is just less than 200 miles from our "finca." Catemaco is apparently a collapsed water filled volcano that arises from the coastal lowlands just several miles from the Gulf. The huge lake contains more species of fish than any lake in North or Central America. Many species of plants can be found nowhere else on earth. We will take a boat to "Monkey Island" in the middle of the lake. The bananas and fruit we provide are to feed the monkeys on the island. We will visit a couple of nurseries as well as check out some of the local landscape where large varieties of palms, begonias, orchids, ferns, heliconias, etc. grow.
On some trips and if conditions are clear, we will try to schedule Chiapas, but as of this date this state does not look too good for tourism. We may elect to spend some time in the high desert north of Mexico City. Centuries old Old Man Cactus exist here with many other species found no where else on earth. Oaxaca is also an option as well as Xalapa and Cardel. There is so much to see and do and so little time. We will keep busy.
Costs includes round trip air fare from Miami, all lodging (dbl occupancy), all ground transportation (over 1500 miles), all meals , admission to several areas, permits to enter non CITES regulated plants into the US will be provided, but brokerage fees here will be split on a per bag basis. Incidentals, some beverages and some tips are not included. Also not included are bicycle rental ($50.00), Kayaks ($30.00), Tomatzcal ($18.00) and horseback riding (nominal) only if you elect to partake. Rapelling equipment is ours and there is no charge for its use. We will practice procedure before dropping into the caldera or other areas of opportunity.
Items to bring: A light jacket, long pants, Bermuda shorts, walking /hiking shoes you don't mind getting dirty, possible rain gear or umbrella, sun screen, walking stick, swim suit if you want, camera with plenty of film, small flash light, prescription medicines (although
many medicines may be purchased for much less in Mexico.) Pruning shears are handy if you plan to collect. A portable fishing pole might be fun. Local kids enjoy American candy during our travels. Clothes to give away especially shoes are greatly appreciated by
many in our area. Wear them and then toss them is a common practice. We will see to it that they find an appreciative home if you don't.
Items not to bring: Bottled drinking water (plenty of beverages and snacks are available most everywhere in Mexico). We have plenty of bottled and potable water at our finca. Travel light--Laundry services available if need be. Groups are limited to 16 people so make your reservations early. Liability insurance is not included. We appreciate you helping supply our open bar policy.
Trips are conducted March, May, June, July, August, October, and November. Other times when demand warrants. Groups are limited to 16 people. If you would like to be notified of pending trips please call Tropical World Nursery (561-732-8813) to be put on the notification list. Trips are usually 9 to 12 days.
Cost of 10 day trip is tentatively $1797.50 . This includes all air from Miami , ground transportation, meals, and lodging. ( We do not provide cost of souvenirs). Air allowance is $360.00