Sunday, February 02, 2014

If NOT San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, then WHERE?

No pictures with this blog.  I don't feel like digging through boxes to pull out the photos I took when I visited each of these places.  Besides, each is available in my mind's eye!

Having traveled quite a bit of Mexico, although not enough to satisfy me, there are several places I have been in the past that gave me pause to say, "Wow, this is something else!"  That's not to say that there aren't other places I enjoy immensely, but the places I'm going to tell you about are unique in a way that has caused them to stay in my mind for many, many years.

MALINALCO  - A tiny village with an ancient history that precedes the arrival of the Spanish, all I could think of as I walked around the town was the word "Shang-ri-la"  The climate was luxurious, the trees and views were magnificent and it was one of those places that if you watched or read National Geographic, you would say, "Want to go there some day."  Located, I believe, southwest of Mexico City, it is an easy drive from either Cuernavaca or Mexico City.

The monastery there has been restored - all in black and white.  I was told the reason it is in black and white is that when they started making copies of the drawings they found, they did them in black and white since they did not know the original colors.  It is quite spectacular.  Add to that a pyramid and a close proximity to Chalma, the most visited religious site in Mexico, right behind the Virgen of Guadalupe's site and you have a place to do some research on.   Add it to your must visit list.  You won't be disappointed in my opinion.


TLAXCALA - The state of Tlaxcala is tiny.  Not very far from the City of Puebla, it is a great day trip if staying in that city.  I knew nothing about the State of Tlaxcala or the town until I visited.  I was enchanted.
Besides the wonderfully executed folk art museum and gift shop, there is also some of the most beautiful murals to see inside a building on the main square.  Sorry, the name of the building escapes me.  Instead of staying for a few hours, as initially intended, I spent a whole day there strolling and looking.  Lounging and eating at a sidewalk cafe.  A soft, peaceful, calm vibe was what I took away from this little gem of a town.
Check it out.  It's a delight!

CHIAPA DE CORZO  The State of Chiapas is an exquisitely beautiful place.  All of it that I saw caused me to yearn to return for an extended visit.  Maybe some day.  I had no expectations of Chiapa de Corzo so imagine my  joy when we arrived in the town square to see a Moorish arch that was built eons ago along with the port where the boats leave from to traverse the Sumidero  Canyon.

Add to that the fact that the painted gourds used in the dances that are covered with flowers in Oaxaca dances come from this area and I felt like I had found a golden rainbow.  Stayed a couple of days, walked and walked.  Liked the vibe of the tiny town feel and intend to go back again.  Well there are lots of places I could live forever in Chiapas.  This just being one of them!

All of the above are landlocked, no beaches.  Isn't that amazing?  I, the "water baby" who until I moved to San Miguel had lived on or near the water for the previous 34 years!

Here are the beach places that I could live and would like to stay, at least for a long while:

CHACALA  A hidden gem about 1 1/2 to 2 hours north of PV, it is a hidden gem that won't be much longer.  Darn.  Just recently I saw an article in a travel publication and said, "Drat" .  It reminds me of Puerto Vallarta in the 70's!  Last time I was there there wasn't even a road sign to tell you where to turn....

The absolutely fun thing to do, in my humble opinion, is to get out, take a road with interesting names and check out places.  I haven't done enough of that lately, I'm sad to admit.  But, you might just find that little hidden gem as I feel these places are to me.

I could write about at least twenty more and maybe, some time soon I will.  In the meantime, just google the places I mentioned above.

And, if I disappear from San Miguel, just check out Chacala or Malinalco.  Look for the wacky red-headed Norte Americano.....

If you have some favorite hidden gems, I'd love to hear about them    Happy Trails!


11 comments:

Peter Kouwenhoven said...

Ha! What a crack up! No matter where you go Babs, I will find you!

Steve Cotton said...

And without the military power of the Tlaxcalans, Cortez would never have been able to conquer Mexico.

Babs said...

Steve, interesting information that I did not know.

Peter, interesting comment. I'll be watching over my shoulder!

redshoesarebetterthanbacon said...

Patzcuaro, of course.

Valle de Bravo, if money were no object

Morelia, because it's Goldlilocks Land. Wait. I'm already in Morelia.

Babs said...

The only reason I didn't write Patzcuaro or Morelia is because I think many people know about them....

Unfortunately, I have yet to go to Valle de Bravo! Want to very much though.......I used to know someone who flew to Mexico City with the finest Irish linens and marketed them to the hotels and restaurants in Valle de Bravo. Exquisite items. She more then paid for her trip with all the sales!

Retired Teacher said...

I agree with you on Malinalco... with good reason it was named a "Pueblo Mágico" by the government tourism board. It truly is magical.
Another "Pueblo Mágico" that I just discovered is Zacatlán in the Sierra Norte de Puebla, 2 or 3 hours from Mexico City. The center of town is charming, and it is perched on the edge of a dramatic ravine. Well worth a visit!

Babs said...

Thanks for that info Retired Teacher. Have never heard of it.....some day I'll check it out. Mexico is FULL of surprises. Another place I didn't write about is Vallodolid in the Yucatan. I was amazed at how lovely it is.....

Retired Teacher said...

Yes, Vallodolid is very nice, and not far is Izamal which is also lovely. It's called the Yellow City, because all the buildings were painted yellow (or more of a yellow ochre) when Pope John Paul visited. I have some pictures of Izamal on my blog.

Babs said...

Retired Teacher - With your permission, I would like to add your blog to my blogroll. It would be a welcome addition.
I enjoyed the article on Toluca. I look forward to having the time to read the rest of your posts......
Thanks. A friend of mine has either bought a house in Izamal or is building there. Looking forward to seeing the town.
When I went to Merida last year in February, it was SO HOT that I didn't do as much as I would have liked to do. It was disappointing.

Retired Teacher said...

Of course you have my permission! Thank you so much. I have added your blog to my blogroll also.
Last winter was exceptionally hot in Mérida. I was there last January and they were saying that it was shaping up to be the hottest January on record.

Babs said...

Thanks Retired Teacher......