Local tour operators guide hiking and bird-watching tours to archaeological zones, coffee farms, pilgrimage and sacred sites, springs, and waterfalls in the jungly foothill hinterland north of Huatulco .
One of the most experienced and environmentally sensitive operators is Aventuras Huatulco in Crucecita  (Blv. Guelaguetza Local 12, C-9, Sector J, tel. 958/587-1695, local cell tel. 044-958/589-3907, erastorojas [at] hotmail [dot] com). They offer a range of options, from one-day walks along the Río Copalita (ruins, bird-watching by canoe, mud bath) and jungle jeep safaris and lunch at a coffee farm to jungle overnights (waterfalls, rock hieroglyphic paintings) and complete five-day excursions from Oaxaca City  including much of the above.
Or try other agents, such as reliable Servicios Turísticos del Sur (at the Hotel Castillo, tel./fax 958/587-1211, huatulco [at] prodigy [dot] net [dot] mx), for similar services. You might also contact your hotel tour desk for more options.
A sprinkling of jungle coffee farms (fincas cafeleteras) invite visitors. One of the best prepared is foothill Finca El Pacifico (in Spanish, local cell tel. 044-958/584-6094, cafeplumahua [at] huatulco [dot] net [dot] mx), which offers cozy country lodging and hearty food, jungle nature walks, bathing in cool natural springs, and viewing their coffee processing operation. You can access them directly or through a guide or tour operator.
José Aussenac, owner-operator of Copalita River Tours, (at his Hotel Posada Michelle, tel. 958/587-0535) organizes and guides outdoor adventure tours in the east-side Río Copalita wildlife sanctuary . Options include bird- and animal-watching walks along riverine forest trails, kayaking river rapids, and mud baths at a riverside ranch. Contact him for more information and reservations.
Another good choice is to go with Cascadas Magicas (Chacah 310, a block south of the Crucecita plaza, tel. 958/587-1470, cascadasmagicas [at] hotmail [dot] com) to the luscious tropical foothill forest headwaters of the Río Copalita and hike forest trails for a refreshing swim and picnic (about $30 per person) in the waterfalls of Copallilla creek.
Alternatively, you might plan a trip with Aventuras Piraguas (www.piraguas.com ), a rafting outfitter that guides groups, mostly during October and November. They have no office in Huatulco . They operate out of Veracruz and meet their clientele in Huatulco by appointment.
Local travel agents offer other tour options: several hours of sunning, swimming, picnicking, and snorkeling at a couple of Bahías de Huatulco beaches cost around $20 per person. Tours to Puerto Ángel , Puerto Escondido , and wildlife-rich Laguna Manialtepec  or Parque Nacional Lagunas de Chacahua  go for $30–50 per person. For reservations, call Paraíso Huatulco (tel. 958/587-0181) or Prometur (tel. 958/587-0413).
Savvy local folks recommend the services of ecologically sensitive guide Mario Cobos (tel. 958/587-1833, info [at] mariocobos [dot] com, www.mariocobos.com ). Although Mario’s first love is bird-watching, he also offers fishing excursions and backcountry eco-tours. His fee begins at $50 per day, for one or two persons, with your wheels. Jeep rental (figure a minimum of about $50) is extra.