Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

Around San Miguel there are other small Colonial towns dotting the mountains and offering perfect opportunities for day trips. My friend Linda Rose suggested we drive over to Delores Hidalgo a historically significant town about an hour away. It is not really on the Gringo tourist trail like San Miguel or Guanajuato but more of a Mexican tour destination due to its history. This area is high desert and the drive over is a series of brown arid hills dotted with scrub trees and cacti. It conformed to my idea of Mexican countryside and I kept expecting to see burro’s walking the dusty roads.

Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

Plaza Principal

It was here in Dolores Hidalgo on September 16, 1810 that Father Miguel Hidalgo issued his cry for Independence from Spain. His proclamation “Grito de Delores”  stirred the population to action and thus began a 10 year struggle for independece.

Delores is what I think of as a “real” Mexican town! I say that because it is in no way a Gringo tourist town. Known for its Talavera (ceramic) production it supplies inexpensive, mass produced colorful ceramics to much of Latin America and the United States.  Half of the 55,000 people in the town work in the ceramics industry.  On the day we visited we were the only Gringo’s visible and I got a sense that we were being looked at with curiosity. Rightly or wrongly, I was told that the town had a rule of not renting to Gringos.Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

We visited the usual tourist sites…the church in the main square where Father Hidalgo made his proclamation, the Plaza Principal with its statue of Fr. Hidalgo and the Mercado (market). The market in this flat low rise town is the heart of the town with it food stalls, flower stands and lunch counters. I loved walking around just feeling the ebb and flow of the market. As in every Mexican town the neighborhoods are dotted with old Baroque churches each with its gold guilt interiors and statues of a bloody Jesus…we visited a few but the main church in the Plaza Principal is by far the most interesting.  Be sure to look at the massive carved and gold covered alter in one of the side naves.Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

On the way back we stopped in the little town of Atotonilco…pop.597…which is home to “The Sistine Chapel of Mexico”. Now I might think that is a bit of a stretch but it is a charming little church. It was pouring down rain when we arrived and as in all Mexican towns when it rains, the water was six inches deep in the street. The Convent of Jesus Nazareno was constructed between 1740 and 1748 by Father Louis Felipe Neri de Alfaro who had a vision of Jesus wearing a crown of thorns and carrying a cross, directing him to build a church. It was a good choice of sites to build on being as it was situated next to a series of hot springs.

Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

Convent of Jesus Nazareno

It is the interior of the little chapel that attracts visitors to this out of the way place. The interior was completely covered in paintings depicting scenes from the bible. Painted by a local folk artist Miguel Antonio Martinez de Pocasangre in the 18th century the interior is lovely and well worth a visit.Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

About Larry Bosco

In 2010 I had one of those “Is this all there is” moments and so in January 2011 I retired from Real Estate Appraising, sold off all my worldly goods and headed out as a solo traveler in search of a new place to live. Since then I’ve traveled around the world, made new friends and had many great adventures and some not so great. After staying almost a year in Cuenca, Ecuador I have headed back to South East Asia where I began the journey in 2011. Currently I am living in Chiang Mai, Thailand
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One Response to Delores Hidalgo…a perfect day trip.

  1. Thanks for the update! Always good to hear from you.

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