Two weeks ago I shared with you my food experiences from my last trip to San Miguel de Allende Mexico in February. Today I'm giving you a peek into everything we did there, and maybe it will inspire you to have your own adventure...perhaps even in Mexico.
This was my first time ever staying at an Airbnb, and it was the best experience ever. I've seen my friends post pictures of their cute Airbnb rooms when they travel, and let me tell you, that yes, these places can really look as cute as pictures!
We stayed at a place that was about a 5 minute walk south of the main square. It was a perfect distance because we could start the day with a little walk on our way to get coffee. The hosts were wonderful, and we even got to know one of our neighbors and peek into her room. (third photo). We had a shared living room space, a kitchen, a garden, it was so inviting. I highly recommend it for a trip, and it will keep the cost lower.
A few blocks from our Airbnb was a pop-up flower market. I heard it was only there for the month of February, and then the space converts back to a little park. Last year this is where I would go running in the morning, so I was pleasantly surprised on my first day there when I saw this flower market set up. It smelled so good, and they had so many plants available varying in size. There was an area dedicated to selling clay pots for the flowers you buy.
On the first day we were there, it rained. The whole day. It was a bummer since we had hoped to spend our time in the sunshine, but this was a good day to go to some museums. My favorite one is an art museum near the center that is also an art school. It has beautiful murals, a courtyard, and a few featured artists displaying their work. When it's sunny, I like to sit in the courtyard with a book.
There are so many little boutique shops all around the town. So many. Everyday I went and discovered new shops selling art, ceramics, wooden creations, clothing, jewelry, home goods, pretty much everything. The level of creativity and talent in this town is so great. There's also a pretty large mercado that stretches about 8 blocks with little booths along each side, AND down the middle. At one end there's a food market where you can get fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as meats and spices. At this end there are people cooking food, so you can sit and eat a snack or a meal. Then as you make your way down you can buy pretty much anything else you need with so many options.
The Mexican culture has strong roots in the Catholic religion. There are so many beautiful cathedrals and churches in San Miguel and they're all breathtaking inside and out. You're able to walk in and see the inside when there isn't a mass happening. I love to sit for a little bit and take in the grandness of the church building. It brings back so many memories from my childhood.
San Miguel de Allende is a very artistic town as a whole. From all the handmade items that you can buy in the small shops, to the north part of San Miguel where you can see a whole collection of wall murals as you walk the streets. As you turn the street corners in this area, you're greeted with inspiring paintings. It's amazing. There's also an old textile factory that has since been converted to artist studios and galleries, small shops, and restaurants. You could spend a whole day in this area enjoying all the art.
Parks & Weddings
Los parques, or the parks in Mexico are little areas that are surrounded by trees and might have a gazebo in the middle. Seeing statues are also a common thing. These are really just spaces where families can hang out together enjoying the fresh air and street life. You'll usually see people setting up their little stands to sell things or food carts ready to serve up some treats. The main park in San Miguel is right next to a church so if you're there in the afternoon on a weekend you'll probably get to see a wedding parade. I wrote about the wedding parade a few months ago, being a popular tradition where it's like the whole town is invited to the celebration as the wedding party and guests follow mariachis and a wedding donkey around the square. It's such a fun experience.
The parks are a great place to hang out any time of day. There's always something interesting happening.
This last trip was a bit rainier and cooler than I expected, but I had a great time. I took great pictures that I'll be revealing in the summer with a new collection. I ate way too much food, and drank an excessive amount of coffee. I know I'll be back to San Miguel, hopefully with my family, but I'd also love to plan a trip where it's kind of a retreat for people who want to come along. I'll keep mulling it over and thinking through logistics, but if you're interested leave a comment or send me an e-mail to let me know. I love this city, and I know anyone else who comes will too.