We met Patrice and Tom the winter of 2006, on a beach, in Progreso, Yucatan. We share a "small world" moment. Patrice and Tom are from our home state of Wisconsin, and lived within an hour of our former residence! With so much in common, the friendship came fast and easy. Ten years later, Patrice and I refer to each other as "Sis" and "Little Sis". These are not just words of endearment, in my eyes and heart she is a sister to me, as well as Tom being a "Big Brother". El Señor and Tom are great pals, bonded by a mutual love for sports and all things Green Bay Packers. Last week Patrice and Tom joined us in Querétaro, for a few days, as they made their way to Guanajuato. We in turn caught up with them in their travels.
Guanajuato is a must see destination. It is the San Francisco of Mexico filled with continuous hills, winding roads, narrow sidewalks, tight alleyways and long sets of stairs to carry you up and down the mountainside. Oh, and it is incredibly beautiful! Strong legs and good walking shoes are required. The streets can be so narrow that a passing bus will have the hair on your arms standing at attention!
Here is a look at some of the city's prized landmarks.
|Teatro Juarez / Theater Juarez, 1903|
The Diego Rivera House and Museum. Childhood home of Mexico's famed painter and husband to the equally famous artist Frida Kahlo. Diego was born in this house and spent most of his childhood here.
|La Señora Taking Direction From Diego Rivera|
The Alhondigas de Granaditas or House of Grain. Site of the September 28, 1810 "Siege of the Alhondiga". This was the first battle of the Mexican War of Independence, between the insurgents and the royalist troops. The royalist troops made their stand by taking refuge in the House of Grain. With few windows, thick walls and only one entrance, the insurgents were unable to take this building until a poor miner known as El Pípila made his move. Pípila strapped a large stone onto his back and crawled to the wooden door carrying a flask of tar and a torch. Upon reaching the door, using the tar and torch, he set the door on fire. This allowed the insurgents entry to retake the building. El Pípila's actions are commemorated in the form of a huge stone statue, that overlooks the city, sitting proudly on San Miguel Hill.
|Alhondigas de Granaditas / House of Grain|
|City view of El Pípila|
|El Pípila Monument on San Miguel Hill|
Due to the city's steep hillside, flooding was a serious problem. Tunnels were constructed to divert the overflowing waters during the rainy season. In 1960, the construction of a dam, brought the flooding problem under control. Today, the tunnels are used as underground roads and walkways for moving traffic more efficiently throughout the city.
The University of Guanajuato
|University of Guanajuato|
Artwork by: Leonora Carrington
Cathedral Basilica Nuestra Señora de Guanajuato.
|Basilica of Our Lady of Guanajuato 1696|
|Plaza de La Paz / Plaza of Peace Monument|
In honor of Miguel Cervantes, author of Don Quixote.
Callejón del Beso or Alley of the Kiss, is only 66 inches wide. It is the city's most famous and photographed alleyway. According to folklore, couples who kiss on third step, painted red, are guaranteed 7 years of happiness together. A newer tradition to this site are the locks of love, securing your love for eternity.
|Locks of Love|
Not one to pass up good karma, El Señor and I couldn't resist..........
Next stop, Bernal!
I hope you have enjoyed,