Nestled in the central highlands of Mexico, San Miguel de Allende is a city that enchants visitors with its colonial charm, rich history, and vibrant arts and cultural scene. Its narrow cobblestone streets, colorful buildings, and ornate churches make it one of Mexico’s most picturesque destinations. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll take a closer look at San Miguel de Allende’s arts and cultural scene, as well as several things to see and do in the city. We’ll also discuss the benefits of San Miguel de Allende vacation rentals and provide some tips for choosing the best vacation rental for your trip.
Getting To San Miguel De Allende
San Miguel de Allende is located about 170 miles northwest of Mexico City. The easiest way to get to San Miguel de Allende is to fly into either Mexico City’s Benito Juarez International Airport or the Leon/Guanajuato International Airport. From there, you can take a bus or private shuttle to San Miguel de Allende.
If you’re coming from Mexico City, there are several bus lines that operate direct services to San Miguel de Allende. The journey takes approximately 3-4 hours, depending on traffic. Private shuttle services are also available, which can be a more convenient option if you have a lot of luggage or prefer not to travel by bus.
Arts & Culture Scene In San Miguel De Allende
San Miguel de Allende is renowned for its arts and culture scene, which is deeply rooted in the city’s history. The city was founded in the 16th century by the Spanish, and many of its buildings and landmarks reflect the colonial architecture of the time. Over the years, San Miguel de Allende has attracted artists, writers, and musicians from around the world, giving rise to a thriving arts and cultural scene that is still vibrant today.
Things To See And Do In San Miguel De Allende
Landmarks & Historical Sites
One of the best things to do in San Miguel de Allende is to explore its landmarks and historical sites. Here are some must-see attractions:
- Parroquia De San Miguel Arcangel – The iconic pink church in the heart of San Miguel de Allende is a symbol of the city’s identity. You can climb to the top of the church for panoramic views of the city.
- El Jardin – San Miguel de Allende’s central square is a bustling hub of activity, surrounded by shops, restaurants, and street performers. It’s a great place to people-watch and soak up the city’s energy.
- Instituto Allende – This art school was founded in the 1950s and has since become a cornerstone of San Miguel de Allende’s arts scene. You can take classes in a variety of subjects, including painting, sculpture, and jewelry-making.
- Casa De La Cuesta – This is a historic mansion which is now a museum and cultural center. It features exhibits on the history of San Miguel de Allende and hosts events such as concerts, art shows, and literary readings.
Museums & Art Galleries
San Miguel de Allende is home to numerous museums and art galleries, showcasing the work of local and international artists. Here are a few to check out:
- Museo Casa De Allende – This museum is located in the former home of Ignacio Allende, a key figure in the Mexican War of Independence. It features exhibits on Allende’s life and the history of the war.
- Museo Histórico De San Miguel De Allende – This museum is housed in a former convent and features exhibits on the history of San Miguel de Allende, including its role in the Mexican War of Independence and the Cristero War.
Food & Drink
San Miguel de Allende is known for its delicious food and drink. Whether you’re looking for street food or fine dining, you’ll find something to suit your taste buds. Here are a few must-try dishes:
- Tacos Al Pastor – These tacos are made with marinated pork and served with pineapple, onion, and cilantro. They’re a local favorite and can be found at street food stands throughout the city.
- Chiles En Nogada – This dish is a symbol of Mexican patriotism, featuring poblano peppers stuffed with ground beef and topped with a walnut cream sauce and pomegranate seeds.
- Mezcal – This distilled spirit is similar to tequila but has a smokier flavor. It’s made from the agave plant and is a popular drink in San Miguel de Allende.
San Miguel de Allende’s natural beauty makes it a great destination for outdoor activities. Here are a few options:
- Hot Air Balloon Ride – Take in the stunning views of San Miguel de Allende from above with a hot air balloon ride. Several companies offer tours that take off at sunrise and offer breathtaking views of the city and surrounding countryside.
- Hiking & Horseback Riding – The nearby countryside is perfect for hiking and horseback riding. There are many trails and ranches in the area that offer guided tours.
- Botanical Gardens – The El Charco del Ingenio Botanical Garden is a 170-acre nature reserve located on the outskirts of San Miguel de Allende. It features numerous walking trails and over 1,000 species of plants.
San Miguel De Allende Vacation Rentals
One of the best ways to experience San Miguel de Allende is by staying in a vacation rental. Vacation rentals offer more space and privacy than hotels, and they can be more affordable as well. Here are some tips for choosing the best vacation rental for your trip:
When choosing a vacation rental in San Miguel de Allende, consider the location. Do you want to be in the heart of the city, or would you prefer a more secluded location? Do you want to be within walking distance of attractions and restaurants, or are you willing to drive or take public transportation?
Vacation rentals can vary widely in terms of amenities. Make a list of the amenities that are important to you, such as a pool, a full kitchen, or air conditioning. Some vacation rentals also offer additional services, such as housekeeping or a private chef.
Read reviews from previous guests before booking a vacation rental. Look for reviews that mention the cleanliness of the property, the responsiveness of the owner or property manager, and any issues that guests encountered during their stay.
In conclusion, San Miguel de Allende is a city that offers something for everyone. Its rich history, vibrant arts and cultural scene, and delicious food and drink make it a must-visit destination in Mexico. With the numerous vacation rentals in San Miguel de Allende from HOLT, you can always find the perfect home base for your adventures.