Choosing to come to this city is the best decision you can make if you’re looking for the ultimate Mexican experience; here you will witness a beautiful colonial city and discover its old-world charm alongside modern-day Mexican culture.
The name Zacatecas comes from nahuatl zacatl or zacatecatl, and it means "city where grass (zacate) grows". Before the arrival of the Spaniards, this area was inhabited by Chichimecas who established themselves near Cerro de la Bufa. The city with immensely attractive architecture carved into the pink limestone was given the nickname of Ciudad Rosada (the Pink City) and now is known as a United Nations World Heritage Site.
This state is centralized right in the middle of Mexico that’s why we say, “The Heart of Mexico”, and the state capital, Zacatecas, is a necessary stop when visiting Mexico. Although filled with rich historical, cultural, and natural sceneries, Zacatecas is not as popular to tourists compared to other locations, but it is definitely worth adding this city to your list. Below, we have listed a guide of our favorite places to visit such as La Bufa, Mina El Edén, and Museo Rafael Coronel, but there is no need to limit yourself to the many more sites that will make you fall in love with the beautiful city of Zacatecas!
The beautiful and colonial city of Zacatecas was built by the region's mining boom, mostly of silver, which provided plenty of wealth to the Spaniards and caused it to establish itself as a mining city. As a consequence, this city bloomed with riches and astonishing architecture formed with it. Most of the astounding buildings that were built with these riches are still standing, which allows for a breathtaking view when walking around the city. When visiting Zacatecas it is essential to walk around downtown and its historic main plaza. There, you can take in all the cultural riches with street vendors alongside its architectural sites. Being there, you must visit the Templo de Santo Domingo, San Agustín church, Calderón theatre, the Basílica Catedral de la Asunción, and the local government building, known as Palacio de Gobierno. To do so, you can take a cable car and take in all its beauties from above. Lastly, this is a romantic city as well, filled with local coffee shops and delicious restaurants that will make walking around the city the most enjoyable experience!
León Felipe Guevara Chávez, Flickr
The word "Bufa" comes from the origin of the word aragonés which means "pig's bladder" and it was named by Juan de Tolosa. Back in the day, La Bufa was a guard protecting the city from invasion and is such a tall mountain that it can actually be seen from anywhere in the city!
The Cerro de La Bufa has an elevation 2,657 m and is one of the main attractions when visiting Zacatecas. You can visit this place several different ways using a taxi, bus, or even a cable car depending on the weather. This historic site is home to the last battle from the Mexican revolution in 1914 where Francisco Villa defeated the army of Victoriano Huerta and opened up its way towards Mexico city. To honor it, there is a large plaza, "Plaza de la Revolución" and sculptures of Pancho Villa, Felipe Ángeles y Pánfilo Natera mounting their horses. There, you will also be able to find a museum, a periscope to see the whole city, a mausoleum, and a meteorological observatory. What you should get from this is that Cerro de la Bufa is *the* place to visit when wanting to take in views from the top as well as learning more about Mexico's history, especially its revolution.
La Mina "El Edén"
If you want to have an unforgettable experience, La Mina "El Edén" is the place to go. Have you ever heard of a mine with a club inside of it? Well, here it is! La Mina Club. This popular attraction is an old silver mine that produced the wealth of the Spanish crown and later the entire republic. In 1960, it was the end of the exploitation of mining and on January 1st, 1975 it was open to tourism. If you suffer from claustrophobia there's no need to worry since they built the passageways wide and tall. If you want more a fun night experience, make sure to visit the bar/club that's located at the same place. Who's interested to go and check it out... and maybe party a little?
All in all, Zacatecas is magical. You won't get enough of the music, food, and scenery wherever you go in this city! Some of the most famous foods is the traditional asado de boda which is a regional mole with an orangey flavor and of course, its birria de chivo (goat stew). If you're planning to visit here make sure you choose the perfect weather which can be around April-May. Remember that Zacatecas is located in a desert region and during the summer time the temperatures can be very elevated and during the winter it can get really cold. Feel the heart of Mexico, and have the experience of your lifetime!
So, what do you think? Did you add Zacatecas to your travel list or was it there before this? What other cities would you like us to add? We would love to hear from you!
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