Aguascalientes Mexico: Your Complete Visitor’s Handbook

aguascalientes mexico
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Aguascalientes Mexico: Your Complete Visitor’s Handbook

Out of the 32 states in Mexico, Aguascalientes is one of the smallest yet beautiful and with interesting qualities.

It is located in the central region, just shy of 500 kilometers from Mexico City.

For the record, the capital city is called the same as the state: Aguascalientes City.

As you have guessed, the name derives from the several hot springs in the area (Aguascalientes means hot waters).

This charming Mexican region enjoys excellent weather most of the year. In fact, there are a few vineyards here that I will talk about later.

Aguascalientes has a unique historical richness, due to the great relevance it gained during the colony, leaving traces of it in its architecture, streets, and facades.

Let’s now take a closer look at all the interesting things to do and see here.

Where is Aguascalientes, Mexico?

aguascalientes mexico
ETN is my favorite coach line. They offer two-story units super comfortable.

Aguascalientes sits in the middle of what I like to call: The Mexican Triangle, formed by Guanajuato, Guadalajara, and Mexico City.

To get there, you have several transportation options depending on your starting location:

By Air: You can fly into the Aguascalientes International Airport. There are direct flights available from major Mexican cities such as Monterrey, Guadalajara, Mexico City, and Tijuana, as well as some international destinations.

By Bus: Aguascalientes is well-connected by coach services. Several bus companies operate routes to and from Aguascalientes from various cities across Mexico.

You can check schedules and purchase tickets from ETN, Primera Plus, and Omnibus de México.

By Car: If you prefer driving, you can reach Aguascalientes via Mexico’s high-end highway system. Major highways connect Aguascalientes to cities like Guadalajara, Mexico City, and surrounding states. Make sure to plan your route and consider factors like tolls and driving conditions.

TOP 6 things to do and see in Aguascalientes, Mexico

1. José Guadalupe Posadas Museum

aguascalientes mexico
aguascalientes museum

This iconic building used to be a curial house over two centuries ago. But in 1972, it became the first art museum in Aguascalientes.

This museum pays homage to famous Mexican engraver José Guadalupe Posada, a native of Aguascalientes, it exhibits a large collection of his work in a permanent room.

There are also works by authors such as José Fors, Tamayo, Mimo Paladino, among others, and it is the site of the National Engraving Contest.

Don’t forget to take a picture with La Catrina, the original metal engraving from 1912.

The museum is open Tuesday to Sunday from 11 am to 6 pm.

2. Plaza de las Tres Centurias

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In this site, three emblematic buildings were built in three different centuries: XIX, XX, and XXI. Hence the name “Square of the Three Centuries.”

As a tribute to the railroad tradition of the city at the end of the 19th century, it is now an important tourist and recreational area.

Enjoy its main attractions: the steam locomotive known as La Hidrocálida, the Fountain of Dancing Waters, the monumental Clock, and the Flagpole and Flag.

3. San Marcos Island and Fair in Aguascalientes

aguascalientes mexico
isla san marcos

With almost 45 hectares, San Marcos Island Park offers several activities, such as a boat ride on its artificial lake.

You can also visit the largest mechanical clock in Latin America or the Megavelaria dome, home of the National Fair of San Marcos.

If you visit during the fair and enjoy extreme activities, take advantage of the largest roller coaster in Latin America.

The internationally famous San Marcos Fair takes place around mid-April until the first week of May.

4. National “Death” Museum

aguascalientes mexico
Not only an interesting Museum, but the building is very pretty
death museum

The goal of this Museum is to show the iconography of death and funerary art of different historical periods in Mexico.

It also shows through its multiple rooms, the different cultural manifestations related to death in Mexico throughout its history.

The following are the rooms of the National Museum of Death:

  • Underworld
  • Pre-Hispanic Vision
  • Novo-Hispanic World
  • Independent Mexico
  • Contemporary Era
  • Exterior Gallery
  • Multipurpose Hall
  • Hall of popular art of Calaveras (skulls)
  • Neo-prehispanic folk art
  • Room of popular funerary and ritual art

It also has temporary exhibitions that, through different artistic expressions, show death as a central theme.

5. Temple of San Antonio

aguascalientes mexico
The Temple of San Antonio is worthy of admiration

In the very heart of Aguascalientes is this masterpiece designed by the self-taught architect Refugio Reyes Rivas.

The construction started in 1895 and was completed in 1908; it includes various architectural styles: Gothic, neoclassical, baroque, Arabic, and Russian.

You may want to read: Calvillo Aguascalientes – Where Tradition Meets Enchantment

Inside you can enjoy the frescoes with evangelist themes, its double drum dome, and the chapels dedicated to Santa Rita de Casia and the Holy Sepulcher.

6. Try the food in Aguascalientes, Mexico

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Delicious regional food at La Estacion

Aguascalientes is also home to good traditional food that I’m sure you will love.

The following are the two best restaurants known for their good food and ambiance.

  1. Messicana: A beautiful and delicious place in downtown Aguascalientes with walls full of history. The menu, of varied international dishes, features Mexican and signature touches; cocktails are good and authentic.
  2. La Estación: It is distinguished by its Mexican breakfasts, among its specialties are tacos de nata, huevos rieleros, and cecina; the atmosphere is familiar and with a nice view of the Plaza de las Tres Centurias.   

Where to stay in Aguascalientes?

mexico travel and leisure
Quinta Real Boutique Hotel in Aguascalientes is my favorite!
lodging in aguascalientes mexico
Quinta Real Aguascalientes is within walking distance of major parks and museums and 10 minutes away from Isla San Marcos

Aguascalientes offers a range of accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets.

Here are some recommendations:

Historic Center: Staying in the heart of the city gives you easy access to attractions like Plaza de la Patria, the Cathedral of Aguascalientes, and various museums. There are boutique hotels, guesthouses, and budget accommodations in this area.

Zona Dorada (Golden Zone): This area is known for its upscale hotels, shopping centers, restaurants, and nightlife. It’s a good choice if you prefer luxury accommodations and want to be close to entertainment options.

Near the Feria de San Marcos: As I mentioned earlier, this vibrant city hosts the Feria de San Marcos, one of the largest fairs in Mexico, usually in April. If you’re visiting during this time and want to experience the fair, consider staying near the fairgrounds.

Suburbs and Outskirts: If you prefer a quieter environment away from the hustle and bustle of the city center, you can look for accommodations in the suburbs or on the outskirts of Aguascalientes. This option is ideal if you have a car.

Online Booking Platforms: Websites like Booking.com, Airbnb, and Expedia offer a wide range of accommodation options. You can filter your search based on your preferences, such as price, location, and amenities.

Aguascalientes Wine Route

aguascalientes mexico
4 Soles Vineyard
mexico travel and leisure
Las Cruces Vineyard

Remember earlier when I said that Aguascalientes has excellent weather?

Well, that also includes ideal climatic conditions and altitude for grape growing, which has given Aguascalientes important fame in wine and brandy making since colonial times.

Although the wine boom in this region went dormant for a while, it resumed in 2005 with lots of private investment.

Thus producing several labels with varietals such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Parrellada, Blanc de Zinfandel, Syrah, Petite Syrah, Mourvedre, Nebbiolo, Garnacha Blanca, Touriga Nacional, Tempranillo, among others.

Currently, Aguascalientes has around 200 wine grape hectares, with 10 established wineries and vineyards, as well as complementary attractions that offer the public a unique tourist experience.

The wine route includes several vineyards such as:

  • Viñedos 4 soles
  • Viñedos El Potrerito
  • Centro de Estudios de la Vid Viña Estación
  • Viña Las Cruces
  • Hacienda de Letras
  • Viñedo el Aguaje
  • Vinícola Santa Elena
  • Bodegas Origen
  • Viñedos Casa Leal
  • Bodegas de la Parra

In each of them, you can walk through the vineyards and the barrel room, in addition to wine tastings and the wine-making process.

Aguascalientes Mexico: Conclusion

In conclusion, Aguascalientes, Mexico offers a rich menu of history, culture, and natural beauty that captivates visitors looking for new places.

From its vibrant festivals and meticulously preserved colonial architecture to its lush landscapes and vineyards, Aguascalientes beckons travelers to immerse themselves in its unique charm and warmth.

Whether you’re exploring its museums and parks, sampling its renowned wine, or simply strolling through its picturesque plazas, this dynamic destination promises an unforgettable experience for every type of traveler.

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