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Allegra Hanlon

Acapulco’s beaches and luxury resorts may get all of the attention, but the area is also a surprisingly rewarding place to view wildlife. According to the Mexican Tourism Board, Mexico is home to 1,500 of amphibians, mammals, and reptiles that inhabit protected areas across the country. Here are five places in Acapulco to give you as much proximity to these animals as possible.

Photo: Alamy

Coyoca Lagoon

Considered one of the most colorful parts of Acapulco, Coyoca Lagoon is famous for its vegetation and wildlife and has been the site for several Hollywood films, including Sylvester Stallone’s Rambo II. Exclusive tours to the lagoon are offered to experience Isla de los Pajaros, a bird sanctuary that’s home to 250 species. 

 

Photo: Alamy

Grutas de Cacahuamilpa Caverns

Though a three-hour drive from downtown Acapulco, the Cacahuamilpa Caverns in the Grutas de Cacahuamilpa Caves National Park are more than worth a visit. They’re widely considered one of Mexico’s most beautiful natural wonders and are one of the largest cave systems in the world. They encompass a one-mile pathway that winds through centuries-old caves with chiseled stalactites and stalagmites, illuminated by a state-of-the-art lighting system. Be on the lookout for green iguana, rattlesnakes, ocelots, cougars, badgers, and lynxes. 

Photo: Alamy

La Roqueta Island

Just 30 minutes from downtown Acapulco, La Roqueta Island is an impressive ecological reserve and a federally protected area. Not only is it perfect for snorkeling, but the island offers glass-bottom boat tours for visitors to fully appreciate the ocean’s creatures as well as the Virgen of Guadalupe statue submerged in the island. 

 

Photo: Alamy

The Acapulco Botanical Garden

Located in the Southern Sierra de la Madre Mountains, Acapulco’s Botanical Garden extends across 6 acres of jungle. It houses two creeks, native and desert plants, and a myriad of native species of animals such as parrots, fisher eagles and Penelope pheasants. 

 

Photo: Getty Images

Sea Turtle Release

Sea turtles are making a comeback in Acapulco and during your stay, you can help out by taking part in a turtle release project. Campamento Tortuguero Playa Hermosa Amigos del Mar Acapulco finds endangered sea turtle nests and incubates and protects the eggs. In summer months, sign up for a tour to help release the newly hatched turtles to sea.

 

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