Nota: Este contenido tiene una versión original en español

The Laguna de Chignahuapan, also known as Laguna de Almoloya, is located in one of the nine Magical Towns of Puebla, as its name refers.

It is formed by nine springs and that in turn feeds the Tuliman waterfall and the Quetzalapan waterfall, also flows into the Tecolutla River in Veracruz.

Due to the presence of water lilies, the lagoon manages to remain in a blue tone, which is extremely attractive for tourists.

Among the activities that can be carried out in the lagoon are:

  • Renting a boat or kayak: Some people offer the rental service for visitors.
  • Renting a boat or kayak: Some people offer the rental service for visitors.
  • Have a picnic: There are spaces where people can sit and enjoy food while relaxing with the view of the lagoon.
  • Have a picnic: There are spaces where people can sit and enjoy food while relaxing with the view of the lagoon.
  • Having a barbecue: All around are kiosks with grills for grilling meat.
  • Eating with a view of the lagoon: There are also restaurants that offer typical local snacks, which visitors can eat while they have the lagoon in the background.
  • Fishing: It is mainly the locals who fish in the area. Although, it is temporarily prohibited by Temporada de Veda, between December 17, 2019 and until March 31, 2021; this is done in order to preserve the biodiversity and maintain its balance.
  • Trout Fishing Tournament: Every year this typical contest takes place in the area.

Festival of Light and Life

Every year around the Day of the Dead celebrations, the Festival of Light and Life is also held.

It was born as a pre-Hispanic ritual to achieve purification and remains to this day. This celebration begins with The Way of a Thousand Lights in the center of town and at dusk people gather around a huge colorful carpet that tells stories of Day of the Dead, illuminating the scene with candles, torches or candles.

Afterwards, there is a tour along the Calzada de las Almas to the Chignahuapan Lagoon, where the locals believe that it serves as the Mictlan; that is, the entrance to the underworld, according to Mexica mythology.

Also, during the festival there are activities of music, dance, chants, gastronomy, fireworks, among others.

The legend of the Chignahuapan Lagoon

There is the legend of "La Sirena Tlanchana", which tells that in ancient times there was a huge variety of fish and aquatic fauna, so that the villagers were characterized by being fishermen.

At the center of the lagoon there was an islet, a protruding stone or perhaps many roots together ... on one occasion a group of fishermen were attracted to approach observed a woman who combed her long hair, they approached feeling more and more attracted.

She wore a necklace of flowers that adorned her neck and on her head she wore something resembling a crown. The villagers decided to call her Tlanchana, creature of the water and stave of the Cienega.

They also considered her to be the mother and creator of everything in the lagoon. She often appeared as a normal woman, but sometimes the lower half of her body looked like the tail of a black snake.

Laguna de Chignahuapan
Photo: Karen Mojica

The fishermen said that she used to call them and invite them to live with her in the center of the lagoon, enchanting them and clouding their judgment, but they could run away from her... everyone said she was very kind.

With the passage of time and the arrival of new people to the place, the story of the Tlanchana was disappearing and her figure was demonized by the idea that she had a black snake tail, and that for many people was a demonic presence, so later her story was changed and she had a fish tail in the stories and was called a mermaid... and little by little her story was fading until it almost disappeared.

How to get to the Chignahuapan Lagoon?

Access to the lagoon is completely free, open to the public, that is to say, it has no cost. You can access this link, to find the route that takes you to the site.

Translation done by: Karla Giselle Bonales Ramírez