Guanajuato was home to the Otomi Natives in the 15th Century and the name comes from the Purepecha language, Guanaxhuato, meaning hilly place of the frogs.
The city of Guanajuato was founded due to the rich silver mines that were discovered by the Spanish in 1548. In the 16th century it became the richest city in Mexico and the mining splendour of this period is reflected in the cities magnificence.
Guanajuato boasts some of the finest examples of baroque and Churrigueresque architecture in the New World with beautiful art and architecture of the age of Viceroys and a style that continued into the 19th Century. Magnificent Neoclassical structure such as the Teatro Juarez and the Plaza de la Paz, which is lined with some of the city's most striking palaces, including Guanajuato's city hall, the Palacio Legislativo. The picturesque gardin, the Jardin de la Union, is the city's favourite gathering place, where one can enjoy excellent international cuisine in the Valadez Restaurant.
Owing to its particular topography, the city is made up of alleyways where one can find picturesque recesses.
The International Cervantes Festival began in 1972 and has become Latin America's most important festival. Every year the city welcomes all branches of the Arts, including theater, dance, music, literature and fine arts, who perform in the three major theatres, University as well as street performances.
Guanajuato's unique underground streets, form a network across the city, and from 1963 to 1966 the dry riverbed of the River Guanajuato was converted to a street 3km long. One can admire some of the city's charming archways and balconies, which loom over every opening in the tunnel system.
The Monument, Al Pipila, was erected in 1939, honours Juan Jose de los Reyes Martinez who was the hero of the struggle for Mexican Independence who, by setting fire to the portal made possible the taking of the Alhondiga de Granadias, on Setember 28th, 1810.
Also, below, Lovers' Lane, so-called due to the narrow alleyway where lovers could kiss from opposite balconies.
The Teatro Juarez is a majestic structure: Construction began in 1872 and was completed in 1903. It is the only theatre in Mexico that has conserved its original furnishings. The neoclassical fascade is crowned by bronze statues of the Greek Muses. The auditorium is Mauresque, with arabesque detail throughout.
The little downtown Plaza has at its centre a beautiful Florentine style iron fountain
The house of Diego Rivera and its Museum is located in one of the alleyways of Guanajuato.
Also above the Palacio Legislativo.
Clockwise: The Basilica of Our Lady of Guanajuato dominates the Plaza la Paz: The Templo de San Francisco (18th Century) with its baroque fascade: The University of Guanajuato goes back to the Jesuits founding a College of the Holy Trinity in 1732: The Jardin de la Union with its lovely bandstand and fountain.
Your Vacation Paradise.