Almost 2500m above sea level and crammed into a narrow gully between two hills, the old silver town of ZACATECAS is overflowing with ornate colonial architecture and intriguing museums, ranking alongside Guanajuato as the Bajío’s finest destinations – the obvious wealth projected by its fine stone buildings makes this another city that seems plucked straight out of classical Spain. Zacatecas is especially known for its high-quality art museums and subterranean tours of the old silver mine, Mina El Edén, but the main highlight is the ornate cathedral, from which all other main sights are within walking distance. Just a few paces from the market and from the important junction of Juárez and Hidalgo, the Jardín Independencia is in effect the city’s main plaza, where people gather in the evenings, get their shoes shined and wait for buses. West of the Jardín Independencia is the Alameda, a thin strip of stone benches, splashing fountains and a bandstand that makes a cool retreat from the heat of the day.
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Fiestas in Zacatecas
Fiestas in Zacatecas
Zacatecas hosts several exuberant festivals:
Festival Cultural Zacatecas (March/April). For two weeks around Semana Santa the city celebrates this enormous arts festival, with daily events all over town including everything from high-quality Mexican rock acts and even a few foreign bands to folkloric dance, opera and ballet. Most events are free.
Festival Zacatecas del Folclor International (late July–early Aug). Mexico’s top international folk festival with around fifty nationalities represented, mostly performing in the plazas around the centre.
La Morisma de Bracho (weekend closest to Aug 27). Festival with up to ten thousand people engaging in mock battles between Moors and Christians, acted out on the Cerro de la Bufa.
Feria Nacional de Zacatecas (Sept, first two weeks). Zacatecas’ principal fiesta features bullfights and plenty of traditional carousing. The activity happens at La Feria, 3km south towards Guadalupe.
The newest attraction on the Cerro de la Bufa is just around the corner from Plaza de la Revolución, the museum and chapel: Tirolesa 840, a zipline that whips you across a gorge on the north side of the mountain (around 1km total). It’s open daily 10am–6pm, with rides M$250. Contact
492 103 1122 or visit
vivazacatecasadventure.com for more information.