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Dan and I wanted to visit the vineyards in San Miguel de Allende but we didn’t want to take a guided all-day tour. So, we had quite the conundrum on our hands… until I came across Rancho Toyan, that is.
Have you ever been to a winery with a space rock and healing crystals?
What about one with an underground cave guarded by monks?
If you’re interested in visiting the vineyards in San Miguel, Rancho Toyan should be a the top of your list because it has a tour, tasting, incredibly memorable atmosphere, and is easily accessible from San Miguel de Allende without a guided tour from the city.
To get there, this guide has everything you need to know, including:
- Why visit Rancho Toyan?
- How much does it cost to visit the vineyards in San Miguel?
- What’s included in the Rancho Toyan winery tour?
- How to get from San Miguel to the vineyard (without a car)
- And much more!
So, keep reading to turn your budget winery dreams into reality with this detailed guide to visiting one of the best vineyards in San Miguel!
Enjoying the view (and celebrating Dan’s 29th birthday) at the Rancho Toyan vineyards in San Miguel de Allende
Why Visit the Rancho Toyan Winery?
I knew we wanted to visit at least one winery in San Miguel, but it was hard to narrow down my choice.
I started by looking for the closest wineries to San Miguel on Google Maps (that we could hopefully Uber to without spending a fortune) and eventually clicked on Rancho Toyan.
A quick look through their pictures and the positive reviews had me convinced.
Rancho Toyan is owned by a Mexican couple who bought the ranch in the 1990s. The wife began working in wine as a passion project, and she bottled their first batch in 2008.
It’s the first organic vineyard in San Miguel de Allende, and all the wine is (obviously) organic and preservative-free. That means they can’t ship it or sell it anywhere else, making it incredibly exclusive – this the only place in San Miguel you can try the Rancho Toyan wine.
The vines had just been harvested when we visited Rancho Toyan in late September
But that’s not what really makes Rancho Toyan stand out.
Instead, it’s the quirkiness and interesting beliefs of the owners that endlessly fascinated me on our tour, like:
- The space rock surrounded by crystals (that you can lay your hands on to reduce negative energy).
- The temazcal structure for spiritual healing ceremonies with a shaman.
- The largest tricycle in the world (verified by The Guinness Book of World Records).
- Protective angel statues on each row of vines
- And a deep, hand-dug cave (created by eight men over four years) housing the Rancho Toyan wines and spectacular tasting room.
The entrance to the cave is lined on either side by monk statues that guard the wine cellar and tasting room. When the Spanish came to Mexico, they shut down the wine industry across the country – but they let the monks continue to make it.
So, the monks kept the vineyard legacy alive in Mexico, and now they protect the wine at Vinedo Rancho Toyan as well.
One of many monks protecting the entrance path down into the wine cave
How much does it cost to visit the vineyards in San Miguel?
Rancho Toyan offers three different tours. They’re at 12 and 2 pm from Monday through Friday and at 11 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm on Saturdays.
The first tour is 500 mxn / 25 usd and lasts 1.5 hours. It includes the vineyard tour and a wine tasting paired with meat, bread, and cheese.
The second tour is 800 mxn / 40 usd and lasts 2.5 hours. It includes a buffet or three course meal and a glass of wine as well as the tour and tasting.
The third tour is 350 mxn / 17.50 usd and is more of a ranch tour than a vineyard tour. It includes a walk through the fields, seeds to take home, a pot decorating activity, and lunch.
Wine barrels resting at the perfect temperature in the Rancho Toyan wine cave
Dan and I chose the first option and – because we were the only ones signed up for the 3 pm slot on the day we went – we got our own private tour!
In total, our DIY vineyard tour in San Miguel cost:
- 135 mxn for the Uber from San Miguel to Rancho Toyan
- 1000 mxn for the Rancho Toyan winery tour and tasting for two
- 250 mxn for a bottle of sparkling wine to take home
- 300 mxn for the taxi from the Rancho Toyan vineyard to San Miguel
Our total cost for the tour, tasting, transportation, and bottle of wine to take home came out to 1685 mxn / 85 usd for two.
Our tasting platter in the eerily awesome wine cave
What’s included in the Ranch Toyan Vineyard Tour?
First, we began with a tour of the vineyard and some information about the vines, grapes, and wines they produce.
Then, we visited the temazcal structure (similar to a sweat lodge) and learned about the cultural significance of the ceremonies that shamans hold inside them, stopped by the largest bicycle in the world, and let the space rock infuse us with some healing energy.
Finally, we went down into the wine cave and walked among the bottles stacked against the walls where they’re kept at the perfect temperature (there’s a private room for small events, but the maximum time per event is only 45 minutes so guests’ body heat doesn’t disturb them).
Then, we went to the jaw-dropping tasting room where we tried two white wines and two red wines (clearly I remembered a lot about them), each a generous pour and each with a bread, meat, or cheese pairing.
Finally, around 5 pm, two hours after we arrived, our taxi pulled up and we headed back to San Miguel de Allende, buzzed, relaxed, and ready for a night out on the town.
The largest tricycle in the world ’cause… why not?
How to get to Rancho Toyan from San Miguel de Allende
The easiest way to get to Rancho Toyan from San Miguel is with Uber.
Download the app (if you don’t already have it) and call a ride from your location to Rancho Toyan when you’re ready to go. You should budget about 30 to 40 minutes for the trip and the Uber should cost about 135 mxn / 7 usd.
Once you complete the tour, simply ask your tour guide to arrange a taxi home for you.
The one downfall of this is that the drivers can charge pretty much whatever they want and you’ll be stuck paying it. But, keep in mind they have to drive both ways. Our ride from Rancho Toyan to San Miguel cost 300 mxn / 15 usd but my guess is that this price can vary.
If you speak Spanish and have a Mexico SIM card, you can also call your own return taxi with this number: (415) 113-7519
Expect to wait about 15 to 20 minutes for your ride to arrive at Rancho Toyan.
Visiting Rancho Toyan is completely possible on your own, but you can also book one of the San Miguel vineyard and wine tasting tours on Airbnb if you’d prefer to relax and let someone else do the planning!
The underground tasting room and wine cave at Vinedo Rancho Toyan
Use This Guide to Visit One of the Best Vineyards in San Miguel
In total, we spent $85 usd on the tour and came away with pretty pictures, some hazy knowledge of wines, full stomachs, and a delightful buzz.
Our tour lasted two hours and with the travel time on each end, you should budget three to four hours total for this half-day trip from San Miguel.
If you still want to see more, the San Lucas Vineyard and Dos Buhos Vineyard are on either side of Rancho Toyan so with a bit of preplanning (and a bit of a walk) you could add on a visit to one or both of the other vineyards to your DIY winery tour in San Miguel as well.
Ready to go?
Explore accommodation like unique stays on Airbnb (we stayed in this lovely apartment) or the top-rated hotels on Booking.com to plan the perfect night, weekend, or long-term stay in the city. Then, browse tons of San Miguel food, culture, and nature experiences on Airbnb to round out your itinerary!
This article is part of the San Miguel Day Trip series. Read the rest below:
Then, explore the Mexico Series for more tips on what to see, do, eat, drink, and discover in San Miguel de Allende and beyond.
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