The Diario Xalapa reports that the lowest temperature of an October day in Xalapa in thirty years was recorded on Sunday. The low temperature was 5.8 degree Celsius, which equates to 42.4 degrees Fahrenheit.

I can report that Sunday was a beautiful, sunny day, of which I took advantage by motoring to Naolinco with Tere, from whom I buy produce, as my guide. The clear day afforded some spectacular views of Pico de Orizaba, the highest peak in Mexico and third highest in North America, and of Cofre de Perote, also one of the highest peaks in Mexico, both from the town and along the drive there. Both mountains are also visible from various places around Xalapa, most notably from El Parque Juarez and from the glass enclosed lounge on the roof of my apartment building.

Naolinco is a small town about 15 miles North of Xalapa know for its shoemaking and other leatherwork. The entrance to town is adorned by a large statue of a shoemaker sitting over a work in process and there must be at least a hundred shoe and leathergood stores in the small town. There are also a number of homes and shops vending wine produced from local grapes. I haven’t yet tried the vintage, which I am guessing is of last week. The town’s central park is amongst the prettiest I’ve seen in Mexico and is directly connected to a small plaza in front of the cathedral, which you see in the photo.

The hillsides surrounding the town reminded me of the Appalachian mountains, with small farms stretching up the hillsides sporting cattle, mostly Holstein, grazing on the lush, vivid green hillside pastures that fade away into the forest. There were also the omnipresent horses and burros, often tethered aside the road to take advantage of the fodder that otherwise would go to waste, with the remnants of their manure present in the town’s streets.

The area is amongst the most picturesque of the areas I’ve visited in Mexico and its locale a bit higher in elevation makes for a climate a bit more temperate than here in Xalapa. All-in-all a good place to have an acre or so upon which to garden, keep chickens, and perhaps even a sheep or two.

If you look carefuly you can see Pico de Orizaba in the lower picture between the two street lights to the left of the church dome.



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6 responses to “Naolinco

  1. Marie McC

    Yay! You’re back! Hope you’re going to share what you’ve been up to for the last couple of weeks. Hmm…Naolinco has better weather, eh? Is there possibly another relocation in your future?

  2. You Know Me

    Hi Marie,

    A future relocation is entirely possible. However, I plan to remain where I am for the foreseeable future, though I do miss a place to garden and am pained when I must dispose of my kitchen wastes that I previously composted.

    As for what I’ve been doing. Not too much really except getting settled into my apartment and waiting for the MegaCable folks to show up to install internet service. I was told it would be 10 – 15 day and today is day 16. The CableMas folks in Merida had me up and running within a day and a half.

    So I really haven’t had anything to post about. This weekend, though, I will be giving the first English lesson to Tere’s son and two sisters.

    On Sunday I will drive to Miguel de Torre to buy a pickup load of oranges for Tere’s shop as they are about 25% of the price there. She will be able to sell them at a lower price than she sells the orange she buys from wholesalers here, which she thinks will attract more business. If it works out I will take future trips to Puebla to buy other fruits and vegetables with the same aim.

    So I get a tour guide for a bit of help with transportation and the trip will provide material for posting.

    Take care.

  3. Stephen


    I just found your Blog through a referral from —,15,174#msg-174

    We are moving to southern Mexico near the end of next year and would like to survey Xalapa. We have only been tourists in the state of Oaxaca since 1998 mainly to Huautlco and Oaxaca City.

    We will be following your Blog very closely.

    My Xalapa e-mail address is — which I monitor daily. I think I am using a gmail address to respond to your Blog, however.


  4. You Know Me


    Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. Let me know when you will be in Xalap and perhaps we can get to gether for a libation and conversation.

    Take care.

  5. Anonymous

    Lovely to see a little bit of Naolinco again! We lived there for over a year 2001-2002. Straight up the hill behind the town with the most wonderful morning views of Orizaba and Perote….oh, I miss it every day, I think. We moved from there to Merida and have lived here ever since, but not a day goes by that I don’t think of our friends in Naolinco. And, yes, you would love the gardening there…it was great….everything loves the climate, it seems. And the birds and butterflies were an extra added joy!

    LeAnn Roberts

  6. You Know Me

    Hi LeAnn,

    Nice to hear from you.

    This weekend I took drive to Martinez de la Torre, through Perote as I missed the turn. I was astounded at the radical change in vegetation and climate once atop the mountains where there were irrigation system in the corn fields and few trees.

    As for Naolinco there were even butterflies swrming over vacnt lot when I was there.

    Take care.

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