When first arriving in the Riviera Nayarit, contentment is achieved by enjoying the sun’s warm rays and splashing in the sparkling Jaltemba Bay waters… while listening to the Zac Brown Band sing “I got my toes in the water, a_ _ in the sand. Not a worry… life is good.” After two or three months of sun and surf, it’s time to venture further afield to investigate the many nearby beautiful vistas and remarkable sites.

Our first day trip was planned nine months ago in June 2013, after reading Rob’s Ramblings article featured in Jaltemba Bay Life. A copy was made to become our road map to drive north toward San Blas to discover El Cora Cascades. Without fail, Rob’s explicit driving directions successfully directed us to the dry weather road leading to the waterfalls.

After parking the Xterra, we continued on the eroded roadway for a short 10 minute hike to the trail head. We climbed a short pathway to a rocky viewing platform which offered us the first glimpses of El Cora Cascades with its massive water flow plunging into the large lower pool. Upon descending to the pool one could hear the thunder and feel the rush of the river flowing over the upper lip to plummet into the lower pool. After our hike in the hot mid-afternoon sun a dip into the cool waters was a welcome relief. We enjoyed a poolside lunch and a final cooling dip before our climb to the top to return to Los Ayala.

El Cora Cascades is a lovely spot tucked away, but near enough and worth the effort to discover and enjoy the raw power and spectacular beauty of the cascading waters providing an impressive sight.


Along our drive to El Cora Cascades, we enjoyed a brief stop at Playa Platanitos to check out the restaurants and beach. Met a fisherman bringing in his catch of 65 kg of Sierra, a tasty fish. Easily found the small village of El Cora and followed the dry weather road as far as we could. Parked and hiked 15 minutes to the trailhead. Rough concrete steps made the descent to the fall’s base easier. After our hike in the hot afternoon sun, the cool swim was a welcome relief. Enjoyed our lunch poolside and had a second cooling dip before heading back to the jeep. Few stops on the way home to conclude a great adventurous day!

The “Shark” boat has been on Playa Platanitos for years.

Pay Day! Morning total catch of 68 kg. of Sierra.

Driving Directions:

You can refer to Rob’s Ramblings: Hike to El Cora Cascades as your map. We’ve added a shorter set of directions that should take you to the falls.

Round trip from Rincón de Guayabitos to El Cora Cascades and back is 298 km (185 miles).

Drive north to Las Varas and take the highway towards San Blas, and after Platanitos look for a Pemex station on the right. It is located at the intersection of Highway 76. Here turn right toward Tepic. When you reach the 37 km marker you’ll be at the entrance to Tecuitata. Turn right and drive 10 km to El Cora. Continue into El Cora turning right at the Zocalo, and after one block turn left. Now drive out of town passing a graveyard. Note the newly constructed sidewalk and the finely crushed gravel smoothing out the cobble stone road. A green sign “Cascades” points left. Continue a short distance reaching a dry weather road. The scenic road passes numerous jack fruit orchards. Watch for an obvious parking pull out. Park and walk the steeper eroded roadway passing an old palapa to the trail which goes uphill at first to a viewing spot where the corner posts of a palapa are still standing. From here the trail consists of numerous cement steps dropping steeply to the pool – about a 15 minute descent. At the bottom, enjoy the view and cool waters.

by John and Doreen Berg

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