Grutas de Rancho Nuevo

Las Grutas - Grutas de San Cristóbal

Useful Information

Location: Near the town Rancho Nuevo. Carretera 190, 10 km southeast San Cristobal de las Casas. Comitan, San Cristobal de las Casas, Mexico
Open: All year daily 8-17.
Fee: Adults USD 5.
Hard Hat rent USD 2.
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: L=10,218 m, VR=550 m, T=12 °C.
Guided tours: L=754 m. Selfguided.
Photography: Allowed
Address: Grutas de Rancho Nuevo, Sr. Marcelino, Tel: +52-992-103-3871.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1947 discovered by Don Vicente Kramsky.


The Grutas de Rancho Nuevo was named after the nearby town Rancho Nuevo. The Mexican term simply means new farm, so it is a sign how recent this country was settled. The limestone hills are full of caves, but this is the only show cave in the area. The park is open all year, but a visit during the dry season from November to April is recommended.

The cave is well developed, with a paved path and electric light. Unfortunately the light is coloured, but thats nothing special in México. The cave is visited on self guided tours, there are local boys who guide visitors for a small fee. At the end of the cave is the possibility to rent a helmet with a headlamp to explore a short passage without trails. Your shoes might get muddy, so sturdy walking shioes are recomended.

The cave is located in a dense pine forest which was transformed into a park named Parque Ecotouristico Grutas de Rancho Nuevo. Here you can see lush vegetation, including medicinal plants like chamomile. Typical animals are skunks, weasels, bats, armadillos, doves, deer, little riverside birds and opossums. It is possible to rent a horse for horseback riding and there is a small restaurant and picnic area.

About 9 km south east of San Cristóbal, in a pine wood, a five minute walk south of the Pan American Highway. A single passage, but only the first 350 feet are dimly lit with a wooden walkway. If you want to go further, bring your own lights.

Text by Tony Oldham (2004). With kind permission.