Mexico is one of the most fascinating travel destinations in the Americas. It has everything to offer, from the beaches of Los Cabos or Cancun to ancient archaeological sites; from remote jungles or deserts to large, bustling cities. People often forget how big a country Mexico really is. It’s often a good idea to have your own transport and if there’s one part of Mexico where it’s almost essential to opt for car hire with a driver Guanajuato is it.
Guanajuato is the name of a state in the central part of Mexico. It lies about halfway between Mexico City and Guadalajara, with the capital a drive of around four hours away. This state is very much at the heart of Mexico, not only geographically but historically too because it was the cradle of the movement for Mexican independence.
Guanajuato is also the name of the state capital, where the War of Independence’s first battle took place. This city with its colonial center is a World Heritage Site and often considered one of the country’s most picturesque cities. A popular attraction here is the Mummy Museum.
The state is home to the World Heritage Sites of San Miguel de Allende and the Sanctuary of Atotonilco too. San Miguel de Allende’s most famous son was Ignacio Allende, who was a leading figure in the fight for independence. The beautiful colonial city is known as a haven for artists too and has a vibrant cultural scene. Speaking of art, don’t miss the lovely Sanctuary of Atotonilco, which is reminiscent of the Sistine Chapel.
If you love history, you shouldn’t miss the city of Dolores Hidalgo. This is where Father Miguel Hidalgo famously called for Mexican independence and many of the sights here are related to that period in the country’s history. Lovers of ‘ranchera’ music should also pay a visit to the colorful tomb of Jose Alfredo Jimenez, the greatest star of this truly Mexican genre.
To make exploring Guanajuato state much easier, there are different tourist routes, each focusing on a certain theme. For instance, the Independence Route has the Mexican War of independence as its focus. You’ll also find routes focusing on ancient archaeological treasures, monasteries and action and adventure.
A route made for shopaholics is the one that has handicrafts as theme. It will take you to cities such as Dolores Hidalgo for its famous ceramics and to Leon, the most populous of Guanajuato’s cities, for the almost bewildering array of shoes you can buy here. Along the way you’ll also get to visit small towns that each specialize in something specific, such as silver, bronze, woodwork, glass, woolen clothing, tequila or other liquors and certain types of food.
To visit Guanajuato, simply fly into the state capital. The international airport here has flights to and from Mexico’s major destinations as well as several US airports. There are car-hire companies at the airport but if you’d like a driver as well, it’s best to book this before you come to Mexico. You only need to check online for companies that offer this service. Most offer online bookings as well.
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Author: Karina FrostThis author has published 246 articles so far.