Querétaro, Mexico: It’s Oh-So-Pretty

Queretaro Mexico

This weekend we took a three-hour bus trip north of the D.F. to Querétaro, a lovely city of about 700,000 people. (Why does that now seem tiny? Must be because I’ve spent the last 8 months among 20 million.)

Querétaro is unique. It’s a “heartland city” like San Miguel de Allende, but has far fewer Americans and tourists. The streets are spotless and the economy is thriving, something that was obvious the moment I saw an Auto Zone store and other American outlets (sadly, this is one way to measure a strong economy here — are multi-nationals opening chain stores?).

The Centro still looks like Mexico, though — whew. On Saturday afternoon, it was downright sleepy, but beautiful. At night, of course, things got a bit more exciting (more on that on my next upcoming post), but overall, still quite manageable.

More photos:

Crazy ficus tree in Queretaro

These extremely landscaped spherical ficus trees were all over the city. That’s Brendan’s head over there on the lower right, to give you an idea of the scale of these trees — which normally only grow as indoor house plants in the U.S., but are planted all over Mexico.

Another church view. Many of the buildings are painted deep red or orange, a perfect contrast against the blue sky.

Queretaro Sculpture
A lovely sculpture. His Quetzal feathers even shook in the wind.

Bocho (VW-Bug) on a Queretaro Street
One of my favorite cars (they call them “vochos” here) in front of one of my favorite churches in Querétaro. Notice the tiled domes of red, white and green (Mexican flag) above, and below:

Tiled domes of Queretaro church

Like Mexico City, there’s no shortages of VW bugs. Here’s a stretch vocho.
Stretch Bocho (VW-Bug)

My favorite thing about Querétaro’s centro is that many of the streets are closed off to traffic. Perhaps because cars simply wouldn’t fit:
Queretaro Street

10 thoughts on “Querétaro, Mexico: It’s Oh-So-Pretty

  1. Jorge says:

    I love Queretaro, I’m living here (or there) and yes, the economy of the city is at its best, we have the best GDP per capita in the country.

  2. Joy says:

    Jorge, how is Dia de los Muertos in Queretaro? I’m wondering where to go this year. I’ve heard Patzcuaro is great, but it probably gets too crowded for me.

  3. Jorge says:

    You will be right, Patzcuaro is amazing but WAY TO CROWDED, but worth it, just get a hotel room on time, it get full.

    In Queretaro there are a lot of activities, like a gigantic altar in many plazas, and the special sale of day of the dead crafts, bread and some shows and plays in public plazas.

    As you may already know there are a lot of cultural activities in the gardens and plazas, every month has a topic.

    Besides that, you can always go to the graveyard, in which you will see thousands of people offering stuff to their parted relatives and friends.

    http://my.opera.com/Yorch/blog/index.dml/tag/Day%20of%20the%20Dead

  4. elsa says:

    hello, i am just writing to let you know that if you happened to remember a beautiful tree on corregidora and Av. universidad, IT HAS BEEN KILLED by the hospital in front of it (because of renewal), the tree has stand there for over 100 years, and now it is dying away. I ralized that there isn’t any information on this matter in English, and sadly that is why I am writing. So if you know somebody who can help us bring it back to life, or actually provide some evidence of the truth, please do something. I am sending another blog where you can find some other exmples where out Govn’t has killed trees that support the lives of birds, and probably were filtering our underground water. We also have to consider, that if the tree was killed, the substance (whatever they used) will go directly into the river and it will kill all other plants and trees that feed from it. Of course, birds no longer drink from the river’s water, and the ducks that lived there had been moved (for us not to see them die probably). A link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/27947102@N05/3187292794/ . We have to recognize that tree as part of Querétaro, becuase it is, it has always been there, and if you happen to drive on Corregidora and ended up staying at the stop light, you must remember such a beautiful tree full of life. It was one of the things that was supposed to be permanently there, huge and full of life.

  5. Romy says:

    Joy,

    Great pictures – you captured the “centro” atmosphere! I happen to live in Querétaro, and love it. I’ve called it my home for the past 25 years and I just happen to live downtown. Wow, that is amazing. So anytime you want to come back make sure to give me a call and we will have some “elotes” (corn on the cob) from downtown.

    I would recommend Día de Muertos here. The food stands serve delicious typical food. Like pozole and buñuelos… yum!

    So just let me know if you plan to come and I will gladly show you around.

    -Romy

  6. Jitender says:

    I will be coming to Querétaro after 2 months for job. I am married person with a son from India. How safe is Querétaro for the people from outside country(especially Indians).

    Thanks

  7. Joy says:

    I visited Queretaro once during a weekend, so I can’t really comment on its safety. I do not live there. It is my understanding that it is a safe place.

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