La Planta (Power Plant) – San Agustín Etla, Mexico - Atlas Obscura

La Planta (Power Plant)

San Agustín Etla, Mexico

Pause in an abandoned hydroelectric station, now overrun with wildlife, to consider a thought-provoking poem. 

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Some old buildings in San Agustín Etla have been repurposed and found new life in unexpected ways, like the Centro de las Artes de San Agustín. But others have been left to crumble and fall where they once stood tall.

On the side of the mountain above the village of San Agustín Etla sits a former water-powered electric power plant. Now in ruins, it’s a frequent spot for hikers and picnickers to spend an afternoon overlooking the city and contemplating the intersection of people and nature.

Furthering the meditative qualities of this spot, a poem has been posted nearby that reminds visitors of the value of money, and of nature. It reads: Sólo después de que el último árbol sea cortado… sólo después de que el último río sea envenenado… sólo después de que el último pez sea apresado… sólo entonces, entenderás… que el dinero no se puede comer. (Only after the last tree is cut… only after the last river is poisoned… only after the last fish is caught… only then, you will understand… that you cannot eat money.)

Know Before You Go

The plant is located at the top of the Old San Agustín Aqueduct. Upon arrival, you must register with the water filtration plant located at the start of the hike. The trail involves some narrow walkways and uneven surfaces, and you may encounter wild animals. Local ecotourist group, Coyote Aventuras, can offer additional assistance, transportation, and private tours.

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