La Malinche or Malintzin (4,420m) is a Mexican volcano situated in the State of Tlaxcala, less than one hour away from Puebla, and two and a half hours from Mexico City. It is the fifth talles mountain, after Pico de Orizaba, Popocatépetl, Iztaccíhuatl and Nevado de Toluca. It is a great experience to climb La Malinche. Under normal conditions, it is a one-day trip, involving trekking rather than technical climbing.
This mountain is ideal to get started in alpinism, as its normal route is simple. The trailhead is at 3,000 meters, which helps you with the acclimatization process. In fact, it is common to climb this volcano in preparation for one of the nearby major summits, such as the Iztaccíhuatl or the Pico de Orizaba.
We leave our cars in the outer parking lot of the Centro Vacacional “La Malinche” (or inside, in case we are overnighting there). A walk of circa five kilometers through a beautiful forest takes us to an altitude of 4,000 meters, where the trees disappear. Here we go up a scree slope, for an additional 400 vertical meters, and we reach a rocky section close to the summit. The descent is typically done following the ascent route.
The duration of this trek is between six and eight hours, depending on your fitness and acclimatization level.
How to get there?
From Mexico City we drive towards Puebla, and take the exit to Tlaxcala/Apizaco. From Apizaco, you go on in the direction of Huamantla. On a clear day, you will see the La Malinche on your right. You take the exit to San José Teacalco, and arrive at Centro Vacacional “La Malinche”.
Where to eat?
At the restaurant of the Centro Vacacional del IMSS “La Malinche”.
Where to sleep?
You can rent a cabin at the Centro Vacacional itself.