San Miguel de Allende is a magical city located in central Mexico. Close to twenty percent of its population are expatriates from different nationalities. Once you visit this colonial-era town, you will want to come back. Here are 10 things to do in beautiful San Miguel de Allende:
Walk Around the City
When you walk around the city and its historic center, you will find cobbled streets, alleys, and narrow paths free of traffic lights. Admire its colonial architecture and beautiful buildings during your stroll. You will see for yourself why San Miguel de Allende is considered one of the most beautiful cities in Mexico.
Admire its Architecture
San Miguel de Allende is known for its vibrant blend of Spanish and Colonial architecture. The most iconic building is the Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel which was inspired by European Gothic cathedrals. This church houses a significant number of artistic treasures, with gold and red Italian marble details. Other buildings have a Mexican Baroque style that gives this city its cultural, romantic, and historic charm.
Learn About its History
Recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, this city was named after General Ignacio Allende, a key figure in Mexico’s War of Independence. It was founded in 1542 by Franciscan Fray Juan de San Miguel, and it had a key role as a hub in the silver trade. Many historical tours guide you through the town’s glorious history.
In addition to the tallest building in the city, the church of San Miguel Arcangel, there are over 40 chapels inside city limits, and many of them are centuries old. Nuestra Señora de la Salud chapel houses the oldest bell in the city. The neo-classical architecture of the San Francisco church is a frequent wedding venue.
Book your stay in one of the many exclusive boutique hotels that used to be colonial mansions. These houses have been remodeled to offer comfort suites surrounded by dream gardens and amenities such as luxury spas and temazcal baths. Top recommendations include the Rosewood Hotel, Live Aqua Urban Resort, Casa Misha, and Hotel Casa Blanca.
International Fine Cuisine
Savor the best traditional and international cuisine in this melting pot of culinary influences. Most of the traditional restaurants are located near the central plaza. Visit The Restaurant and La Parada for the food and vibrant atmosphere. For breakfast or brunch, be sure to check the famous Lavanda Café.
A favorite spot to savor San Miguel Allende’s enchanting skyline is at the Rosewood Hotel’s Luna Rooftop Tapas Bar. This relaxing venue lets you absorb the town’s colors against the blue sky with a breathtaking view of the iconic La Parroquia. It is a spectacular restaurant to enjoy with family and friends.
A few minutes from San Miguel and near the old dam, you will find the botanical garden El Charco del Ingenio. This 67-hectare reserve includes an exhibit of 1,300 species of cactus. Popular for hiking and camping, this natural reserve was designated as a “Peaceful Zone” by the Dalai Lama.
You will find many art and sculpture galleries, artisanal souvenirs, furniture shops, modern boutiques, and stores that have been there for many years. The Botica de Santa Teresita, a pharmacy with homeopathic remedies, has been in business for centuries. And a few blocks from the main square, you will find the Handicraft Market with over 45 local vendors.
There is a pulsating community of artists in San Miguel, where you will find many studios and galleries. Wherever you go, you will find all types of stores selling one-of-a-kind crafts. Visit the Fabrica la Aurora, is the most important art and design venue located in a former textile factory. The Skot Foreman Gallery is the largest gallery at Fabrica la Aurora and features contemporary art from the last centuries.
San Miguel de Allende is a fascinating city with its unique Baroque and Neo-Gothic architectural styles within a 16th-century Spanish colonial layout. With its old-world beauty and breathtaking views, you need to plan your visit and enjoy many things to do in this fabulous town.
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