| Bulletin Board
| Spotlight Destination
Four things, purely Mexican, came from Guadalajara: Tequila, the Mexican hat dance, maricachi love songs, and traditional Mexican rodeos.
573 KM from Mexico City, Guadalajara is the capital of Jalisco State.
Guadalajara was founded on February 14, 1542. Named after the birthplace of Nun de Guzman, the city was recognized by Charles V in 1542. Guadalajara became one of the most Spanish?cities, due in part to the Conquest when much of the population fled or was killed. In addition to silver mining, Guadalajara thrived on the export of wheat, cotton, wool, and hides. By the beginning of the 20th century, Guadalajara was the second largest city in the Mexican Republic. In the 1920s with the completion of a railway with California, Guadalajara experienced a jump in population and development.
From November to March, evenings are chilly enough to require a sweater. From June to September, many of the afternoons and evenings are rainy. Year round, the weather is mild.
Expensive hotels are well worth the price. They may include, indoor/ outdoor heated pools, fitness centers, a 24-hour doctor, saunas, steam rooms, secure parking, dry cleaning, business centers and bilingual secretary services. Rates range from US$60 to US$400 for a suite.
The Restaurant With No Name is a popular favorite. With no menu, waiters will recite the daily special, full menu, and drinks available. Peacocks wander around while diners are eating. El Sacromonte is noted because of the way food is served, with great presentation and an artsy design. Guadalajara is packed with restaurants, with most of the fine-dining ones located on the west side. Making reservations are recommended for evening meals, particularly restaurants on the west side
The string of nightclubs in Guadalajara are targeted to the under-30 crowd. Many of the lobby bars are considered hotspots for locals and tourists. Most dance clubs and discos are open until the early morning. Live Latin bands, salsa music, Colombian dances, and folk music can be found and enjoyed. Symphonies, orchestras, and folkloric dances are performed at many venues.
Shopping hours are generally Monday to Saturday, 9 - 6, Sunday 10 ?2. There are over 30 malls in Guadalajara. La Gran Plaza has 334 stores, a cinema, food court, and a few restaurants. El Baratillo, one of the worlds largest markets, takes up thirty city blocks. One of Latin Americas largest indoor markets, Mercado Libertad, has over 1,000 stalls selling everything from jewelery to crafts, art to clothing, and even live animals.
Though most restaurants serve international cuisine such as Italian, Japanese, and Chinese, they also do serve traditional Mexican dishes and thats what many Mexicans and foreigners come here for.
Banks: There are many money exchange desks in the city, most are located downtown. Desks are open from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Banks are generally open all day, from 9 ?6, Monday to Saturday.
Internet: Most of the major hotels have a business area with computers that you can use. Internet cafes are popping up all over Guadalajara, hourly rates are inexpensive.
Transportation: Taxis are the easiest way to travel the city. Many hotels post taxi price lists for specific destinations, but its best to agree on a price with the driver. An electric bus runs from downtown to the west side and back. There are six different varieties of public buses. The best is the Linea Turquesa, with air-conditioning and padded seats. These buses only carry as many passengers as there are seats, so you wont be left standing. Guadalajara has a rapid transit system, Tren Ligero, but it doesnt travel to areas of interest to tourists. Car rental outlets are located in various areas of the cities. Some of the hotels offer car rental services.
Tlaquepaque: Located just 7 km southeast of downtown Guadalajara, Tlaquepaque is known as an arts and crafts town. Silver, jewelery, copperware, pottery, blown-glass miniatures, leather and hand carved furniture and hand woven clothing are sold in the 300 shops and stores.
Lake Chapala: Located 45 km south of Guadalajara, Lake Chapala is Mexicos largest inland lake. With the jagged mountains that surround the lake and the spring-like climate, many families, retirees, and tourists are attracted to this quiet town.
Tequila: Tequila or "fire water", as it is also called, is distilled in this town, just 56 km northwest of Guadalajara. Tours of the famous Sanza Distillery, or one of the modern distilleries, are available daily.
|WHERE TO GO:
Bascilica de la Virgen de Zapopan: Declared sacred in 1730, this
church is known as the home of La Zapapanits, Our Lady of Zapopan.
Every October 12th over a million people pack the streets leading to
the church as the 10-inch-high statue is returned here. On the right
side of the church, there is a small gallery and a shop with beadwork
and handicrafts, for sale, by the Huichol Indians.
Catedral: This church has a mixture of Gothic, Baroque, and other
styles of design, a result of remodeling during its 57 years of construction.
Ten of the eleven silver altars were gifts from King Fernando VII, while the
eleventh, made of white marble, was carved in Italy in 1863. A 19th century
French organ, a 17th century painting by Bartolome Esteban Murillo, and
the many beautiful altarpieces are the focal points of the church.
Iglesia de San Agustin: The St. Augustine Church is one of the
oldest in the city. To the left of the church is the Escuela de Musica
(School of Music) originally an Augustinian monastery. Free concerts and
recitals are held on the patio.
Instituto Cultural Cabanas: Famous Spanish architect Manuel
Tolsa designed this landmark cultural center. Originally used as an
orphanage until the 1970s, rooms now house art exhibits. Murals painted
by Jose Clemente Orozco in 1938-39 are displayed on the central dome and
Museo de Arqueologica de Occidente de Mexico: Pottery and other
artifacts used by ancient people are housed in The Archaeological Museum
of Western Mexico.
Museo de las Artes de la Universidad de Guadalajara: This
contemporary art museum belongs to the University of Guadalajara.
Permanent collections of 20th century drawings and paintings are on
Mueso de Cera: Located in the historic downtown area, this 120-figure
wax museum has figures such as Madonna, Mahatma Gandhi, Mexican
comic Cantinflas, and other international and Mexican political people.
An underground Aztec sacrificial chamber and chamber of horrors are a
Museo de la Ciudad de Guadalajara: You will find artwork, artifacts,
and copies of documents about the citys development in this remodeled
Museo del Periodismo y de las Artes Graficas: Guadalajaras first
printing press was set up in this area in 1792. Historic newspapers,
printing presses, recording equipment and even a complete television studio
are on display.
Museo Regional de Guadalajara: This Regional Museum was first built
as a seminary in 1701. Artifacts, paintings, and memorabilia depict the
history of western Mexico from the prehistoric era to the Spanish conquest.
Palacio de Gobierno: Built in 1643 this structure houses the
government offices of Jalisco. Two of Jose Clemente Orozco, one of Father
Miguel Hidalgo and one of Juarez in the 1850s, are on display.
Palacio Municipal: Inside Guadalajaras city hall, built in 1952,
is a mural portraying scenes from Judgement Day.
Parque Agua Azul: With a childrens theater, a museum, carnival
rides, tropical birdhouse, and garden, this park is a popular place for
Teatro Degollado: Plays, orchestras, and folklore ballets are
performed in this theater modeled after Milans La Scala.
Templo de Nuestra de Aranzazu: With intricate designs on the walls
and ceilings, a Baroque style altar, and 14 life size statues of saints,
this church holds many sites to see.
Zoologico Guadalajara: This zoo is home to over 1,500 hundred
animals. The Magic Jungle amusement park and planetarium are located
on the same lot.
WHERE TO EAT:
Local specialties in Guadalajara are birria, a goat, lamb or pork dish
that is roasted and served in tomato broth; torta ahogada, a spicy pork
sandwich; and pozole, a hominy and chicken soup. The Santo Coyote, in
the former U.S. Consul Generals home, is an intriguing place to dine.
With a shrine to the Virgin of Guadalupe, murals of goddesses, and
flowing waterfalls this restaurant deserves a visit. On the menu is
grilled goat and ribs in a pepper sauce, the house specialties. One of
the superior restaurants in the historic center, and one that has been
featured in several Mexican movies, is La Rinconada. The dining room,
with its high vaults and pillars, was once a farm in 1897. Seafood, such
as wine-marinated fish, steaks, and enchiladas are served at this popular
eatery. Reputed to be Guadalajaras top Italian, La Trattoria serves up
items such as seafood spaghetti, homemade bread, and beef with Marsala
and mushrooms.Locals come to Casa Bariachi for the mariachi music, steaks
and drinks. The atmosphere can become so festive that waiters and diners
sing along with the music. La Feria offers entertainment with your meal.
Mariachis, Mexican folkloric dances, bingo, and cowboys come with meals
such as shrimp tacos, Mexican chorizo, and parillada. Karne Garibaldis
holds the Guinness Book World Records title for the fastest service.
Appetizers are delivered within seconds of your arrival and the only dish
served there, carne in su jugo, takes only a minute to prepare.
|WHAT TO DO:
Bullfighting: Weekly from October to November and every other week
from January to March, bullfights begin at 4:30 at Plaza Nuevo Progreso.
Guided Tours: Many tour agencies offer guided city tours, and
trips to Tequila, Lake Chapala, Tlaquepaque, and Tonala.
Golf: The Atlas Country Club is an 18-hole course. Green fees
include caddy, light lunch, and transportation to and from major hotels.
El Palomar Country Club is another 18-hole course in a wooded, hilly
terrain. The oldest and only one hundred percent private club is the
Guadalajara Country Club. Several important tournaments are held at
this 18-hole course. Reservations and proper attire are required at the
Santa Anita Club de Golf. This 18-hole course is located in a residential
area four miles west of the city.
Studying Spanish: Spanish lessons are given at the Foreign Student
Study Center, also at the IMAC Instituto Mexico American de Cultura.
Spas: Located just 20 km outside of Guadalajara, this spa is where
people go to "get away from it all". Hikes, yoga, pool exercises, steam
rooms, massage, mud wraps, anti-stress and aging therapies, sightseeing,
horseback riding and more is offered here.
Other Activities: The Iceland Pista de Hielo has public skating as
well as a restaurant and an ice cream parlor.
|WHERE TO SHOP:
Guadalajara is known as the leader in Mexicos shoe industry. High
quality footwear is available at a fraction of the price in the United
States. All 60 stores located in the Galeria del Calzado sell shoes.
The metropolitan area of Guadalajara has over 30 malls. Centro Magno,
a three-story mall, has upscale shops, boutiques, and bistros. A Hard
Rock Caf?as well as a large Cineplex is located here. La Gran Plaza
has over 334 stores, a large food court, several restaurants, and a
14-screen theater. Guadalajaras second most popular mall, Plaza
Mexico, has 120 shops, stores, and boutiques. Guadalajara has one
of the worlds largest flea markets, El Baratillo. Approximately
30 city blocks long, this market has stands, stalls and tents filled
with new, used and antique wares. The Instituto de Artesanias
Jaliscienses is run by the state government and has items such as
pottery, crafts from other parts of Mexico, and blown glass. Prices
are fixed so bartering is not needed. The Mercado Libertad, also
known as the Mercado San Juan de Dios, is one of Latin Americas
largest indoor public markets. Over 1,000 privately owned stalls,
that sell everything from crafts, jewelry, food and produce, live
animals, and clothing take up a three-square block area. Bartering
is practically a tradition at this market. People from all over
Mexico, specifically charros, or cowboys, and Mariachis come to
Guadalajara for the leather boots and belts, embroidered shirts
and sombreros. Many people come to Guadalajara to shop in
Tlaquepaque and Tonala for the crafts, arts, jewelry, leather,
blown-glass, silver, pottery, wood furniture, and clothing. No trip
to Guadalajara is complete without a stop at these towns, located
just 4-5 miles east of the city.
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