Tuesday June 18, 2013
In Guadalajara you'll find a wonderful blend of the old and the new. The city was founded in 1542 and has many historical buildings, but it underwent a major modernization project in the late 1940s and early 1950s which changed the face of the city. In Guadalajara's historical center you can appreciate historical buildings, lovely plazas and green spaces and stores and markets. One of the most impressive historical buildings in Guadalajara is the Hospicio Cabañas (now the Cabañas Cultural Institute), which is a World Heritage Site. Besides its elegant and functional architecture, this building also contains over fifty murals by Jose Clemente Orozco.
The main attractions of Guadalajara's historical center are best visited on foot. Our Guadalajara walking tour will guide you through the most important attractions of this fascinating area: Walking Tour of Guadalajara.
Photo of Guadalajara's Plaza de Armas © Suzanne Barbezat
Wednesday June 12, 2013
You may think of Los Cabos as a beach and party destination, but there are lots of things to do there beyond having fun in the sun and partying til you drop. Visitors to Los Cabos who are interested in art, culture and nature will also find activities to interest them. Here are a few that I enjoyed on a recent visit:
- Whale Watching: Seeing the whales frolic around our boat, even shooting up out of the water, is an experience that I won't soon forget! This was a highlight of my trip to Los Cabos and I recommend you add this activity to your itinerary if you visit during whale watching season. Find out more: Whale Watching in Los Cabos
- Ride a Camel: I never expected to ride a camel on this side of the Pacific, but as it turns out, the hot, dry climate of Los Cabos is ideal for these desert animals, and Cabo Adventures offers an tour that allows you to get up close and personal with them. Read more: Camel riding in Los Cabos
- Art and History in San Jose: Los Cabos is made up of two towns and the 20 mile stretch of coastline between them. Of the destination duo, San Jose del Cabo is the town with more history. It was originally a Jesuit mission, founded in the 1700s. A stroll around the town will allow you to learn a bit about its history and enjoy its many galleries, restaurants and shops. Take a walking tour of San Jose del Cabo.
Photo © Suzanne Barbezat
Wednesday June 5, 2013
It's been raining in Cancun for several days now, and there has been some flooding both in Cancun and along the Riviera Maya. I visited the area a couple of weeks ago to witness the Sacred Mayan Journey and enjoyed good weather the whole time - it rained only twice during my visit, both times showers that lasted less than an hour. Visitors this past week haven't been so lucky. According to the regional report of Conagua, Mexico's National Water Commission, the amount of rain that has fallen since last Sunday in the northern part of the state of Quintana Roo is equivalent to 35% of the state's average annual rainfall. The worst flooding has been in Cancun city, with the water level rising up to a meter above the street level, but Kukulcan Avenue, the main road that runs along the hotel zone, has also been affected.
An overcast day in paradise
© Suzanne Barbezat
The tropical depression that caused the rain in Cancun has now developed into Tropical Storm Andrea in the Gulf of Mexico which is now heading toward Florida. Andrea is not expected to develop into a hurricane. More information from the National Hurricane Center.
Rainy season in central and southern Mexico lasts roughly from May to October. In general rainy season is not a bad time to visit; it's rare that you will get several days of rain in a row. If you do happen to get rain on your vacation, there are other things to do. In Cancun, visit the new Maya museum that's located in the hotel zone, go shopping in the many malls, enjoy a spa treatment, and take advantage of the city's legendary nightlife. Read more about rainy season in Mexico.
Friday May 31, 2013
If you're planning a trip to Mexico in the summer months, you may want to time your trip to coincide with one of the many festivals that will be taking place in Mexico's delightful colonial cities. These destinations offer plenty to see and do throughout the year, but when you visit during a festival, you're guaranteed to see them at their most vibrant.
July is a great time to visit Oaxaca. A traditional dance festival called the Guelaguetza takes place every year in mid-summer in this beautiful and colorful city. This year's Guelaguetza will be held on July 22nd and 29th. The traditions behind the festival date back to ancient times, but this will be the 81st edition of the festival in its present form. Read more about Oaxaca's Guelaguetza festival.
If you enjoy classical music, you won't be disappointed by a visit to San Miguel de Allende during the International Chamber Music Festival, from July 26 to August 17. Now in its 35th year, the festival's line-up includes the Enso String Quartet, the Onix Ensemble and the Gryphon Trio. Concerts will take place in the Teatro Ángela Peralta, as well as in other venues.
Guadalajara's annual Mariachi Festival takes place from August 28th to September 8th. The festival kicks off with a parade of the mariachis in their finery. Other events include gala dinners, rodeo shows, concerts, music workshops and art exhibits. This is an opportunity to enjoy some of the best mariachis in the world in the city that is considered the birthplace of mariachi music.
More ideas for summer travel:
Photo © Suzanne Barbezat