Bernal is another beautiful Magic Town in Mexico, making a Day Trip to Pena de Bernal is something you can not miss if you are near to Queretaro or Mexico City.
Like all the Magic Towns of Mexico, it is full of colors, traditions and a very special charm.
This is the name of the town located in the state of Queretaro, which was declared a Magic Town in 2006, its full name is San Sebastian Bernal. Inside this charming town, it is located, Pena de Bernal.
What is Pena de Bernal
Pena de Bernal is the name of the monolith that is located in Bernal Town. This is the third-largest monolith in the world and yes, it is majestic!
The monolith is more than 288 m. high at an altitude of 2515 m. above sea level. It is known so far that this monolith was formed from a volcano, the lava inside solidified. Over time, the rock of the volcano was eroding and leaving the solid magma that is what we know today as Pena de Bernal.
Day Trip to Pena de Bernal
Visiting Bernal from Queretaro City is very simple, the town is located less than an hour away from the City center.
If you are staying in Queretaro City you can easily make a day trip to this magic Town and return in the afternoon to continue exploring the wonders of this state.
If your idea is to make a visit from Mexico City, it is also possible, it will take you approximately 2 and a half hours.
What to do in Bernal
The cobbled streets, pretty colorful houses, and the charm of Mexican town make walking through its streets the best activity, but there is much more to enjoy here.
Climbing Pena de Bernal
Declared by UNESCO as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2009. Admiring the immensity of this wonder of nature is the main activity, but it is also possible to climb it.
*My grandparents were climbers since they were young and my mom started climbing and rappelling since she was a little girl. For them to climb here would not be very difficult, but for us who are not very athletic, there is a path that helps the ascent.
Definitely not a simple ascent, the first part can be done in a not so difficult way, but there comes a point when it is necessary to be very careful or go in the company of a specialized guide.
You need to have a good physical condition because of the height of the place. If you want to try it, you can hire a guide to make the hiking safe, and also show you the Skull Cave and the cave paintings. There are different climbing routes depending on the difficulty.
The monolith is visited by international climbers to practice rappel, rock climbing and enjoy the view.
Tips for climbing Pena de Bernal
Wine Tasting and Vineyards
In the post I wrote about The Best at Queretaro City, I told you about the different wineries that can be visited in the state. Bernal is so close and therefore, it is possible to do the same wine tours as in the city of Querétaro.
In the town, you can hire an art, wine, and cheese tour or you can do it on your own if you like it.
There are so many wonderful vineyards to visit near the Mexican Town.
Casa del Dulce Museum
You can’t miss this sweet experience in the town, you will learn the importance of pre-Hispanic cuisine in Mexico, its colors and flavors. You can also watch the preparation of some of the sweets that you can buy at the Candy Museum.
I’m sure it will be a delicious memory of the Mexican candy!
San Sebastian Temple
Built between 1700 and 1725 one of the most important buildings of Bernal, colorful, and photogenic.
In this 17th century building that simulates a medieval castle, you will find the Mascara Museum.
The Mascara Museum
An interesting collection of pre-Hispanic masks made by local artists. In addition to some that have been acquired from different parts of the world.
Buying Mexican Handicrafts
In Bernal as in almost all Mexican towns, you can find a lot of beautiful crafts. Wool textiles, embroidered clothing, colorful decorations, and many more options.
Walking through the streets you will find a great variety of handicrafts at great prices.
Day Tours in Queretaro State
In the state of Queretaro, you can make different day tours for eco-tourism activities such as bike tours, hiking, hot air balloon flight and more.
Where to Eat
I assure you that eating in Bernal will be a pleasure!
The street food it’s delicious, do not miss the traditional bread, the different types of cheese, and the Esquite on its different varieties, prepared with corn and seasoned with chiles and spices. Beware with the Habanero!
If you prefer to enjoy a delicious Mexican meal with a beautiful view of the monolith, then you have to visit El Mezquite Restaurant.
Where to Stay in Bernal
I still have not stayed there, because I’ve always done a day trip to Pena de Bernal, but it is definitely a place where you can spend a very pleasant night or even more.
You will find different types of accommodation with spectacular views and perfect to relax. Hotel, Hostel, Boutique Hotel, Cabin or even Camp.
El Cantar del Viento, Hotel Boutique.
Casa Mateo, Hotel Boutique.
Chichidho. Where you can camp, stay in a cabin or hostel.
Weather in Bernal
The weather is quite pleasant during the day, warm and sunny. But at night the temperature decreases considerably, I recommend you to bring fresh and warm clothing since you could have a great variety of climates during your visit.
I really like to visit places wherein a single day I can enjoy different climates, but it is important to know in advance.
If you’re looking for a pretty Mexican town, you’ll love it!