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Resting upon the slopes of a hill facing the Laja River is the charming colonial city of San Miguel de Allende. The winding cobbled streets and Spanish architecture attract tourists and artists seeking inspiration.
The town’s artistic merits have attracted a large arty community which in turn has created a vibrant cultural scene. This is highlighted in December’s San Miguel Music Festival, which features Mexican and international performers. Religious festivals are also frequently held, with the most important being the San Miguel Arcangel, commemorating the city’s patron saint. Highlights of this festival include a running of the bulls, traditional dancing and copious amounts of food and alcohol.
Its artistic air makes the town a perfect place to shop for local arts and crafts. The expatriate community has also ensured a healthy restaurant scene, with eateries catering to all tastes and budgets. The open air pavement cafes give the city a Mediterranean feel and music performers add to the festive atmosphere.
The downtown district contains most of the ancient monuments and distinctive architecture. Its heartbeat is El Jardin, the main square, upon which stands the city’s famous Gothic church, La Parroquia.
Visitors to the city should take a trip to the nearby Sierra Gorda. This landscape of gorges, streams, forests, mountains and arid plains covers some 380,000 acres and showcases nature at her most spectacular. Numerous towns of historical and cultural significance dot this inspiring landscape.
San Miguel is a four-hour drive from Mexico City along Highway 57. Along this route, you will pass the Tequisquiapan turnoff, where you will see an exit on the right marked A San Miguel. After this exit, the road narrows to two lanes and becomes Highway 111. San Miguel is about 32 kilometres from this point.
San Miguel de Allende's nearest international airport is Aeropuerto del Bajio, located 110 kilometres from San Miguel. This airport is serviced by the Mexican domestic carriers AeroMexico and Mexicana, and by Continental and American Airlines. Buses to San Miguel de Allende depart from Mexico City’s Terminal Norte on an hourly basis. The bus trip is approximately four hours. From Guanajuato, Flecha Amarilla has nine buses a day to San Miguel.