In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, Mexico was home to a booming silver-mining town. The region of Bajio produced most of the silver that kept Mexico afloat during the years of Spanish rule. The wealth poured into the rolling hills of the Bajio area. Today, the magnificence of the colonial architecture serves as a reminder of how grand this region used to be.
For history loving travelers, Bajio is the home of the Mexican revolution against Spain. La Cuna de la Independencia, or the Cradle of Independence is home to many towns that played a special role in the revolution.
The historic city centers of this area are full of charm and colonial relics. If you only have time for one, though, you may want to make it the one in Zacatecas. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is so jam packed with steep and narrow streets; you'll feel like you've stepped back into medieval times. Nearly every building here is from the nineteenth century or before. Simply wandering through the town is like touring a living museum. With several colonial monasteries, churches and houses, Zacatecas should sit on everyone's history bucket list.
If you're more interested in visiting places steeped in history, Queretaro is another UNESCO World Heritage Site, and for good reason. Visit the Theater of the Republic to stand in Mexico's most important theater. This is the spot where Emperor Maximillian I had his trial, and where the 1917 Constitution was written.
However, to see what many call the most beautiful city in Mexico take a tour of Guanajuato. Not only is this full of the colonial architecture of the region, but it also has cities built on a slant and a network of underground tunnels that locals continue to use as roads.
There are plenty of things to do in this hotbed of history Bajio, Mexico. For starters, you can take the teleferico, or cable car, to see a full view of the city center. After you've seen everything from the sky, take a trip underground. By visiting the once active silver mine of El Eden, you'll see how the entire mountain was hollowed out by hand for three hundred years.
If you find yourself in Queretaro, there are plenty of tours to enjoy. For example, the "Leyendas" tour features people dressed as historical characters as they tell the stories of the city in a colorful and entertaining way.
If that's not enough entertainment for you, Queretaro is home to one of the most unique experiences you can find on vacation bullfighting. This city is home to two bullrings. The Plaza Santa Maria is one of the most important in Mexico, and Juriquilla is considered the most beautiful ring in all of Latin America.
For travelers who are striving to stay active on their vacation, hike the trail that goes to the top of the mountain that overlooks Guanajuato. The trail takes approximately thirty minutes to get to the top. It's a simple hike and well worth the trek. If that's not to your liking, the whole region is full of mountains for hikers of every skillset
Food and Dining
Because this region has remained more remote than many other areas of Mexico, you'll find more untouched, traditional dishes. Food in Bajio is delicious and prepared in the old style.
Be sure you try the chicken, local vegetables and the miner's enchiladas that are served nearly everywhere.
Within the different cities in Bajio, there are bus systems and taxis available for speed and convenience. However, if you're staying in just one town, walking is really the only form of transportation you'll need. By not walking, you do yourself a disservice since there are so many unique things to discover and explore walking around these colonial towns.
If you're travelling between cities, you may be able to find local bus routes to take you to different towns. Your most efficient and convenient option, however, is to rent your own car. Be very cautious, especially if going in and out of Guanajuato. To enter and exit the town, you'll have to use the underground tunnels. These are one way only; so taking the wrong tunnel could derail your route leading you to an impromptu tour of the entire city.
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