Historical data from the people of Huatulco shows that the human settlements found upon the arrival of the Spanish in 1522 included the village of Huatulco, some five hours walk inland, and the seaside village called the Port of Huatulco.
In reaction to pirate invasions, the Port of Huatulco abandoned its location in 1697 and moved to where today we find the municipal seat of government, established in the year 1700. The route they took on the 8th of January left from what is now Santa Cruz and passed through La Garita, Arroyo González, Piedra de Moros, Las Pozas, Todos Santos, Arroyo Limón, Hacienda Vieja and the municipal seat.
The part of the journey that goes from La Garita to the municipal seat was opened in the late 1940’s. Before then the old route went from Santa Cruz to La Garita, the junction of the mountain stream in Arenal, to el Zapote, arriving at the municipal seat.
All of the pirates who came to find and plunder the town of Huatulco traveled along this same route. They included Thomas Cavendish and others, as well as the Viceroy who disembarked in Santa Cruz on the way to Peru. In 1812 Lieutenant Vicente Guerrero also took this route and did so again in 1831 this time with the title of General and ex-president of the Mexican Republic. In 1850, while in Santa Cruz for the founding of Villa de Crespo, then Governor Benito Juárez also walked this route.
Cruz del Monte, since time immemorial, has been considered by the indigenous people as a holy site where ritual offerings were made to secure good harvests and other favors from the gods. It was not just a local site for making petitions. It is said that people came from as far away as Tlaxcala, the Valley of Oaxaca, and the Lower Mixteca. The Chontales and the Zapotecs from the isthmus among others visited as well.
Piedra de Moros was established in the next to last decade of the 19th century by the family of Luciano Lavariega and his workers. The community of Hacienda Vieja was re-established in 1910 by the family of Aurelio Figueroa Ramos and Elvira Cortes Surita, a married couple from Miahuatlán.
Every January 8th this route is walked to commemorate its history.
Translation By Sue McClam