Guadalajara

Welcome to Guadalajara

As Mexico’s second-largest city, Guadalajara delivers a less frenetic alternative to the nation’s capital. And, while many of the images recognized as Mexican have their roots here – mariachi music, wide-brimmed sombreros, the Mexican hat dance and charreadas (rodeos) – Guadalajara is as much a vanguard of the new Mexico as it is guardian of the old. An embarrassment of museums and theaters drive the cultural life forward, fusion chefs have sharpened the edges of an already legendary culinary scene and foresighted local planners are doing their damnedest to tackle the traffic.

Guadalajara can’t match the architectural homogeneity of smaller colonial cities, though its historic core, anchored by the wonderful cathedral and Instituto Cultural de Cabañas, is handsome. The hipster Chapultepec neighborhood is sprinkled with fashionable restaurants, coffeehouses and nightclubs. The mellow suburbs of upscale Tlaquepaque and grassroots Tonalá are folk-art shoppers’ dream destinations, while Zapopan has some interesting colonial architecture.

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Guadalajara on the map

Trip Ideas

More Destinations in Mexico

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Wandering through the delightful colonial heart of Querétaro with its shady squares, grand fountains and historic mansions, you’d never guess that this is one of the fastest-growing cities in the northern hemisphere thanks to a booming aerospace and technologies industry. Except perhaps you can, as in order to reach the colonial heart of Querétaro, you’ll have to first pass through some fairly striking examples of urban sprawl and contend with the powerhouse city’s legendary bad traffic. However, it’s well worth the effort to do that, as Querétaro’s star is clearly in the ascendent, with an optimistic and mercantile population rising to the challenges of life in modern Mexico. The town’s historic heart is characterized by charming andadores (pedestrian streets), gorgeous plazas and historic churches. The sophisticated restaurants serve up quality cuisine and the many museums reflect Querétaro’s important role in Mexican history.

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