The charming city of Zacatecas is located at a height of 7,500 feet in a valley between two hills in the state of Zacatecas. It was founded in 1546 and grew into a rich and elegant colonial city thanks to the region’s mining boom. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the architecture here is immensely attractive. The city cathedral which was completed in 1750, has the best façade among all the cathedrals in Mexico. A famous Saturday night ritual in Zacatecas is the Callejonada Zacateca, which begins at around 9 pm with a walk around the city’s alleys, passageways and plazas with enthusiastic people singing, playing instruments, dancing, drinking and having a great time.
The luxurious Hotel Quinta Real is constructed around the ruins of the old bull ring in such a manner that the centre of the old bullring is now the centre of the hotel’s courtyard. An old aqueduct runs past. It is fun exploring the town, walking on cobbled streets and climbing up the steps leading to narrow paths and alleys, which curve around to a new street at a higher or lower level, which in turn open out into colourful plazas and courtyards. There are some nice museums around – the Museo Rafael Coronel is famous for having the largest display (over 2000) of traditional masks in the country.
The city’s silver mines were among the richest in the country in the colonial period. An old silver mine, called Mina El Eden (it stopped production in 1964) is one of the major attractions of the place. There were originally seven levels in this mine of which the fourth level is open to visitors. A train ride takes visitors wearing yellow safety helmets, some 600 meters deep into the mountain, Cerro del Grillo. The train stops inside and the rest of the tour is undertaken on foot deep into the mines, as a guide points out major points of interest, relates legends and myths, and explains how the miners of the earlier times worked to get gold, silver, iron, copper and zinc out of the rocks. Inside, there is an amazing museum housing a stunning collection of precious metals and gems from all around the world. Another unique feature of this mine is its night club, the only night club in the world to be totally underground, with a capacity to hold 240 people.
From the mine, there’s an elevator which goes straight up to the entrance of the cable car station. A seven-minute cable car ride across the city brings one to the Cerro de la Bufa, the highest peak in the area.
You can read about my travels and experiences in Mexico as well as the tourist destinations in this beautiful country in my ebook Discovering Mexico
Click here to read the book synopsis and sample chapters and to know how you can buy a copy of my ebook.
I leave you with this rockin’ song from Pitbull : Back in Time Enjoy 🙂
Take care… hasta luego