Guanajuato was a city we had never heard of as we started our journey across Mexico, but after receiving a tip from our good friend Ivan in Mazatlan we knew we had to go. To say the town is gorgeous does not do it justice. Multicolored houses stair step their way up the sides of the hills surrounding the city center. The entire historic center is walkable, there are plenty of vegan options, and there is a whole host of fun, unique things to do.
To facilitate traffic to and from the city center a series of underground highways and tunnels were built which makes getting into the city a lot easier for the many tourists who visit Guanajuato every year. As we got out of our taxi with our 40 pound packs (plus another 10 pounds on our front) we climbed up to stairs into Plaza Los Angeles the starting point for our journey up to our AirBnB.
We had received instructions from our host but we quickly realized this was going to be a lot more difficult than anticipated. The streets are so narrow no cars can fit through and in some areas single file was required to navigate the labyrinth. After searching for two hours, hiking up and down steep skinny streets we elected to set bags down and plan our next step. Was tonight the night we sleep on the ground? Would we ever find our AirBnB? Was I going to pass out from heat exhaustion?
After several scouting missions and talking with several locals we decided to try and call our host as we weren’t getting responses on messages. Luckily he spoke English and gave us a set of 11 photos that step by step guided us up to our home away from home. As we set our bags down and collapsed on the bed, we exhaled, no street sleeping tonight.
Considering we had walked down every alley but the right one looking for our AirBnB, we had a good handle on navigating around the maze of Guanajuato. The city itself is a bustle of activity with interesting slices of culture. Part tourist destination and part college town, with some rich history. The town itself was founded on a lucrative mining industry that flooded the budding city with riches in the 16th and 17th centuries. The church of Guanajuato is evidence of this, it’s interior wall to wall gold.
We visited two museums while in Guanajuato, one that was the house of Diogo Rivera, infamous Mexican artist, and husband of the iconic Frida. The four story museum takes you through the many different styles of art Diogo produced, each progressively different yet profound.
Additionally we visited the mummy museum, which is as it sounds, a museum dedicated and full of local mummies. Vertical burial chambers devoid of oxygen mummified a whole host of early citizens of Guanajuato, including the youngest mummy in the world. The poor baby who died with their mother while still in the mother’s womb due to malnutrition.
Other iconic buildings that are must sees was the theatre and the university. Each has unique architecture either boasting Greco-Roman style columns or Neo Gothic spires with a big set of stairs.
Taking a break from some of the historical sights in Guanajuato we decided to go catch a baseball game at the local stadium. Being a die hard Seattle Mariners fan we have both been missing our baseball fix. What we were able to experience in Guanajuato was the perfect day at the park.
Starting at the local bar for a shot and a beer before the game we entered the stadium for a mere 25 pesos a person. The sun was shining and both the Miñeros and the Gallos were ready to face off. We caught nine innings of baseball complete with chants for both teams, two bench clearing events, and a lot of fun. Our Baseball itch was enthusiastically scratched.
As we left Guanajuato it was with a tinge of sadness as we both had such an amazing time. We will be back that is for sure!