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Riding the train to Copper Canyon

Copper Canyon Express

Example 7 Day Tour
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This Mexico tour explores the Copper Canyon, the largest canyon in North America. Board the El Chepe train on the Chihuahua-Pacific Railway for a scenic train trip through the Copper Canyon as you travel from El Fuerte to the canyon's rim at Posada Barranca. Visit Tarahumara villages with your local guide to learn about the traditional culture and life in this beautiful and isolated region. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Arrive Los Mochis | Transfer to El Fuerte
Day 2 : El Fuerte River
Day 3 : Copper Canyon Railroad
Day 4 : Explore the Copper Canyon
Day 5 : Travel to Creel
Day 6 : Chihuahua
Day 7 : Return Home


  • Journey through the Sierra Madre's on a scenic six hour train ride
  • Boat the El Fuerte river in search of wildlife and petroglyphs
  • Visit Creel to learn about its history as a railroad and logging town
  • Book excursions in the canyon such as hiking, ziplining and via ferrata

Places Visited


Trip Type

  • Independent

Activity Level


Trip Snapshots

Riding the train to Copper Canyon Climb high to see the gorgeous view. Basaseachic Falls in the Copper Canyon The Mirador El Fuerte Museum exhibits history of the area. Enjoy some ziplining while on you Mexico tour. El Fuerte River The El Chepe as it travels between Los Mochis and Chihuahua. Copper Canyon

Day 1 Arrive Los Mochis | Transfer to El Fuerte

Arrive to Los Mochis airport where you will be greeted and transferred to the gateway of Copper Canyon, El Fuerte. In the afternoon meet the guide for an orientation of El Fuerte and take a walking tour and streetcar ride of this cobble-stoned, colonial city.

Day 2 El Fuerte River

Your bilingual guide will meet you at your hotel to head to the river to start your boat trip along El Fuerte River. As you cruise along the water, you will see tropical forest all around that is home to an abundance of wildlife. Your guide will point out local flora and fauna and explain all about the important of the river. Along the shores of the river, you will observe the ancient petroglyphs, which are believed to be over 4,000 years old and depict sun gods and shamans.

Upon completion of your visit, return to shore and drive back to your hotel, followed by an historic tour of El Fuerte city with a short visit to the town's eclectic museum with its collection of pre-Columbian, colonial, and modern artifacts, including items once belonging to outlaw Pancho Villa. Your afternoon is free for lunch and to independently explore El Fuerte.

Day 3 Copper Canyon Railroad

All aboard the world famous, first-class El Chepe train of the Chihuahua-Pacific Railway for the six hour journey into the Sierra Madre Mountains. Considered one of the world’s most scenic rail journeys and an engineering marvel, the train crosses 36 bridges and passes 87 tunnels along its 655 km route from Mexico’s interior to the Pacific coast.

Arrive to Posada Barrancas after lunch (on your own in the restaurant car) and be greeted at the station and transferred to the hotel. Meet the guide, your host for the next three days, who will give you an orientation and discuss the options for the next day's activities. The evening is free to take a short walk to explore the grounds, or relax on your private balcony that overlooks the canyon before dinner.

Day 4 Explore the Copper Canyon

  • Hotels
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today's activities are completely customized based on your preferences and interests, and the guide and a vehicle are at your disposal. Visit a Tarahumara village or the Copper Canyon's most spectacular view points at Oteviachi, Barranca de Laja, or Urique. Light walking excursions or more extensive day hikes can also be arranged, and ziplining and via ferrata (rock climbing/ropes course combination) are options with an additional cost for any thrill-seekers.

Lunch and dinner provided at the hotel, and the spectacular views are complimentary!

Day 5 Travel to Creel

  • Hotel
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Spend the morning free to explore on your own. In the afternoon travel to Creel with stops along the way at Piedra Volada, the tallest waterfall in Mexico. Next, visit the Valley of the Mushrooms, known for its namesake-shaped rocks, and Lake Arareko with unusual rock formations and surrounding pine forest.

Creel's history as a railroad and logging town and its picturesque location among the pine forest makes it an interesting stopover. Spend some time visiting the main plaza or the arts and crafts cooperative that contributes directly to the Tarahumara community. Settle in for the evening at the cozy lodge.

Day 6 Chihuahua

  • Hotel
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch
Continue north from Creel towards Chihuahua and stop en-route for lunch and to visit a "Menonita" community near Cuauhtemoc. After arriving to Chihuahua and settling into your hotel, you are free to explore the parks, plazas, impressive cathedral, and museums of this important historic, regional capital.

Day 7 Return Home

  • 1 Breakfast
Transfer to the airport for your flight to return home or to your next destination in Mexico.

El Fuerte - Hotels

Posada Barrancas - Hotels

Quality Inn Chihuahua

The Lodge at Creel

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  • 6 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners
  • 6 Nights Accommodations
    • 6 Nights Hotel
  • 5 Days Guide Service
  • Both International Arrival and Departure Transfers are included.
  • Park Entrance Fee


  • International Flights


  • $160 Meals not Included
  • $17 Airport Departure Tax
  • $50 Optional Excursions
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Everything was amazing! The planning with Adventure Life went smoothly. The actual trip was fantastic! One of the best trips I have experienced. The cruise staff members were knowledgeable and attentive. I will be writing more about this on the blog!
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When to Go

Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
Chance for unpredictable weather but with fewer visitors.

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