Introduction: What is San Miguel de Allende?
San Miguel de Allende is a small city in the state of Guanajuato and is near a natural reserve that covers more than 19,000 hectares (about 50 square miles) of forests and meadows. San Miguel de Allende was named after the 16th century Spanish Franciscan friar, san miguel calderon. Since pre-Hispanic times, the area has been inhabited by various indigenous tribes including Huastecos, Totonacs, Otomis and Mazahuanes. The main religion was mesoamerican religion. The city was founded on May 15, 1633, by the Spanish conquistador Alonso de León Giraldez. The town is surrounded by a mountain that hosts rocky hills and valleys and indigenous haciendas (farmhouses) that have become hotels for travelers. San Miguel de Allende has about 30,000 people. The city is known for its thermal springs and its Plaza Mayor de San Miguel de Allende. The town is located next to the Salto de Cortés, a waterfall that can be seen from many places in San Miguel. The city also has 12 churches and many houses that show Mexico’s colonial architecture.
Where to Stay in San Miguel de Allende?
Several hotels and hostels are available to suit every budget, with many located in the historical centre of town. The more upscale options include the Hotel Matilda, which features an elegant and inviting boutique style. There is also the Hotel Posada del Rey, a charming hotel that looks like a 17th-century hacienda. Another great choice is Hotel Casa de Carmen, which has hosted several Nobel Prize nominees.
The Hotel Matilda and Hotel Posada del Rey are located in the historic centre, both within walking distance of the Plazuela de San Francisco and host on one of the seven terraces of the Iglesia de Santa Clara. Public transportation is close by with trolleybuses (red and white) that stop at numerous points throughout town. There is also a horse-drawn carriage that transports passengers from Place to Place.
Other hotels located within walking distance in the historic center are Hotel Santo Thomé, Hotel Los Altares, the Hotel Casa de la Moneda, and the Hotel Posada del Carmen.
Hotel Matilda is a charming boutique hotel located in San Miguel de Allende’s historical centre. The building is an elegant colonial style structure with swirling wrought-iron balconies and balconied rooms with wrought iron beds. Each room is unique with gilded ceilings, painted wood furniture and a large window.
The Hotel Matilda also features four separate hostel rooms, a sauna and an indoor pool. There is also a kitchen with all the amenities needed to cook your own meals, including a coffee machine, blender, microwave oven and a gas stovetop. The hotel also has a beautiful terrace where guests can enjoy breakfast and fizz in the afternoon.
What to Do in San Miguel De Allende?
For a quick overview of the area, you can ride a horse or simply enjoy the amazing views over Guanajuato from the observation towers. It is also worth visiting the city’s cathedral, which was originally built in 1606 and is located in a place known as “la Plaza Mayor.” Other popular sites include the San Miguel Market (a weekly market) and Plaza de Armas (a square close to the Cathedral). There are several restaurants in the historic centre of the town, including Casa de la Cultura and Restaurante Lourdes. For a more traditional Mexican meal, try El Corralito with live music nightly. This is a great place to go with children because it serves traditional dishes like enchiladas and menudo (a traditional Mexican soup).
The City Hall is located within the historic center of the city and houses a museum, a library, and various meeting rooms. The town’s market is also located here. The local currency used in the city is the peso. A market place named El Corralito is located close to the city hall. There are also other markets such as La Paz and the Mercado de San Juan.
How Much Does it Cost to Travel to San Miguel De Allende?
A plane ticket from Mexico City to Guanajuato (about an hour flight) costs approximately 250 MXN. From the airport, public bus is also available for about 10 MXN. It is a 5-minute walk from the bus station to the historic centre of town and will cost about 1 MXN. A taxi ride in San Miguel de Allende costs about 5 USD. The price of simple accommodation ranges from 20 USD per night to 200 USD. The price of the more upscale options starts at 80 USD per night. Meals in San Miguel de Allende usually cost between 10 USD to 20 USD per person. Dishes included in the ‘menu del dia’ are usually served with soup, main dish, salad and dessert.
Ten minutes away from the city center is a museum called the ‘House of Culture’ that hosts art exhibitions and events. The entrance fee is about 4 USD per person. Children under 12 years of age get free admission if accompanied by an adult. There are museums dedicated to the local artist Fernando Castro Pacheco and one that exhibits the works of Mexican painter Jose Clemente Orozco.
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