The city of 'eternal spring'
San Miguel de Allende quickly made it to my ‘Top 5 Favorite Cities I’ve Visited’ as soon as the Primera Plus bus we were traveling on had SMA in sight. The journey we took to get to SMA was quite the trek – flying into Mexico City from NYC [5hr 15min], taking an uber to Terminal Norte [40ish min] and then purchasing tickets at the Primera Plus booth for a 3.5/4 hour bus ride to SMA. It only took us about 14 hours to finally get settled in SMA..
After some mishaps near Terminal Norte and suggestions from some SMA locals [& expats] that we met, I have concluded that these are perhaps the best ways to get to SMA instead:
✈️ Travel Option 1:
- Fly into Mexico City [MEX]
- Take the bus from MEX to Queretaro [3hr ~ $20 USD]
- Take an uber or taxi from Queretaro to SMA [1hr]
✈️ Travel Option 2:
- Fly into Del Bajio Airport, Leon/Guanajuato [BJX]
- Take an uber, bus or taxi from BJX [1hr 40 min]
I’ve checked out a few reviews from TripAdvisor and it seems that http://www.bajiogo.com/shuttle/ offers great car service/airport shuttle. Or you can call your hotel to see if they might offer airport transfers and for what prices.
Places to See/Things to Do ✴️
- Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel [the pink church!]
- El Jardin [center of town, across from the Parroquia]
- Art Galleries [they are everywhere! It is definitely an art lovers paradise in SMA]
- Cañada de la Virgen [Archaeological site - House of the Thirteen Heavens, House of the Longest Night.. YES YES YES! Just 51 minutes outside of SMA]
- Horseback Riding
My list is short and I didn't get to do all of these - but you can honestly just get lost in roaming around San Miguel de Allende. Sometimes the best part about traveling is not following an itinerary, but just discovering new things/places as you go.
The colorful buildings and cobble stoned roads make SMA super photogenic, but ladies be warned - flats are suggested as it will be difficult to walk on the cobble stone/tiny sidewalks.
- Buenos Aires Bistro [delicious Argentinean food, best skirt steak I've ever had]
- La Azotea
- Rosewood - Luna Rooftop Tapas Bar
- ocre [try a carajillo - a popular Mexican drink made with espresso and Licor 43]
- La Azotea [highly recommend for pre-going out drinks & dinner]
- DUKE [the best & probably only club in SMA haha]
We stayed at Casa De Los Olivos on Calle Correo. It was a beautiful, boutique hotel that only offers 5 rooms. There's a quaint courtyard when you walk in with outdoor seating, along with a rooftop terrace. We stayed in the Manzanilla Room which was in the front of the hotel. I was worried about the noise from the street, but it was relatively quiet and not too bright. They had Molton Brown products - which was a huge bonus for me. Not only was this hotel close to everything, service was top notch and everything overall was just wonderful.
San Miguel de Allende is a destination that I'd highly recommend. The restaurant scene is strong and continuously growing. I was very surprised by how modern and trendy the restaurants & bars were - definitely rivals with the NYC scene! Prices are unbeatable. This can be a budget trip if you're not looking to spend an entire fortune on one trip.