Querétaro is both a city and a state in central Mexico, but this guide is about the capital of the state, the city of Santiago de Querétaro, known commonly as Querétaro. Querétaro was once the wealthiest city in all of Mexico, and is surrounded by five beautiful mountain ranges, El Buey, Pie de Gallo, El Nabo, El Paisano, El Patol. These mountains, and the fact that the city has a number of rivers flowing through it, made the use of aqueducts a natural choice for residents of the city, which today stand as gorgeous reminders of how the city was able to flourish in the center of an unforgiving mountainous, desert landscape, especially during times of political instability in the country.
Santiago de Querétaro was one of my favorite places to visit in Mexico, because of the vibrant building colors, delightful regional dishes, gorgeous architecture, friendly locals, and rich cultural history.
Where to Stay
Casa de la Marquesa is a stunning pink-orange Latin-American style colonial era hotel was the perfect base for exploring Querétaro. The hotel staff picked us up from the Querétaro airport and brought us to the hotel, which was about a 45 minute drive. Thankfully I spoke Spanish, because the hotel staff did not understand us very well when we spoke English, so if you visit be sure to have a working knowledge of hotel lingo in Spanish, or Google Translate app loaded up with Spanish prior to your arrival. The hotel is situated in the center of the city, and is within walking distance of the Querétaro Museum of Art, the city center and town square, as well as a number of delicious restaurants. The building was much cooler than the ambient temperature outside, which was a welcome relief after traveling all morning from Mexico City.
The halls were hand painted by local artists and air-purifying plants were hung throughout the hotel, even though the air was much, much better than it had been in Mexico City, and Mexico City wasn’t even that bad. The staff member who showed us to our room was very eager to ensure that we were comfortable and he recommended several things to do and places to eat in the area. We immediately felt at home, and loved our stay here. Casa de la Marquesa is by far the most beautiful hotel in the area, and it’s very inexpensive, compared to comparable high-end hotels in the United States.
Where to Eat
Amador Cucina Rústica – Mexican Food
Argentila -Argentinian Food
Di Vino Querétarao -Italian
Las Locas Malteadas de Carranza -Giant, Ornate Milkshakes
Tikua -Mexican Food
What to Do
El Acueducto de Querétaro (Aquaducts)
El Centro Historico (Historic City Center – a UNESCO World Heritage Site)
El Cerrito Pyramid
Cerro de las Campanas
Iglesia de Santa Rosa de Viterbo
Plaza de Armas
Querétaro Art Museum (Next to Casa de la Marquesa Hotel)
Regional Museum (Museo Regional)
Reserva Sierra Gorda
Santa Clara Convent (Convento de Santa Clara)
Visit the Historic Center (Centro Historico)
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