The magic towns, which in Spanish are referred to as Pueblos Mágicos, are Mexico's towns joining a program launched by the secretariat of tourism in 2001. They are small settlements that the nation intends to exploit from the tourist point of view, attracting visitors.
Why do this? Because these are towns that have been able to keep faith with the Mexican spirit, through customs and traditions. The characteristics that have been taken into consideration are the influence of an indigenous past or of colonialism, the preservation of ancestral customs, or for having been the scene of important historical events.
If you are planning a trip to Mexico, it is really worth putting them in your itinerary, for example some of those that we present below.
Chiapa de Corzo is a pretty town in Chiapas, crossed by the Grijalva river. Its most interesting feature is the presence of interesting Renaissance buildings in bright colors. It offers plenty of natural attractions, including the nearby Cañón del Sumidero.
A walk through the historic center reveals interesting aspects of local life, such as shops with carved wooden objects or elegantly embroidered fabrics. In January, in Chiapa de Corzo there is the Fiesta Grande, a very participated event declared Unesco heritage.
It is thought that Cholula is the oldest city in America, having been inhabited without interruption since its origins. The city also houses one of the oldest convents in America, the former Franciscan convent of San Gabriel, next to the impressive Popocatepetl volcano.
Among the other beauties of the city is also the shrine of Nuestra Señora de los Remedios, dating back to the sixteenth century and characterized by beautiful domes decorated with colored tiles. The church was built on a pre-Columbian pyramid, which can still be visited, along tunnels and labyrinths. Do not miss a visit to the local market, full of handicrafts and traditional ceramics, alongside modern objects.
Traditional music, excellent food, pleasant climate and blue skies: the town of El Fuerte is truly an idyllic place, where the indigenous roots of the Mexican people are clearly visible.
If you choose to stop in El Fuerte, you cannot miss the visit to Tehuoco, an important ceremonial center, Iglesia de Dolores, the observation point, the ruins of the Jesuit temple, and the Miguel Ángel Morales Ibarra museum, where masks, and clothes from the traditional dances of the Yoreme population are on display.
Creel is a town surrounded by wild nature, lakes, forests, waterfalls and rivers ... a place imbued with Raramuri culture, where the traveler leaves his heart.
Those who love nature will find themselves at ease walking through the forests of the Sierra Tarahumara, observing the rock carvings of the Valle del Monje and letting themselves be transported by the heat and customs of the local population.
Here we are in Baja California Sur, a wild and desert land, an extension of the much more famous California of the United States. Loreto is a lively town on the ocean, considered a magical town because of the many attractions also in the surrounding area: for example, in the Sierra de San Francisco, you can admire ancient engravings and petroglyphs many years old and protected by UNESCO.
Even the town itself is fascinating, with the charm of a fishing village, overlooking the sea of Cortez and dominated by the Sierra de la Garganta. Here it is even possible to spot whales, while the more sporty can devote themselves to kayaking, diving, snorkeling, hiking and fishing.
Palenque in northern Chiapas is a town and ancient archaeological site where to rediscover the Mayan civilization. The pre-Columbian people built a settlement there, which can be reached following a road surrounded by waterfalls.
The archaeological site, dotted with ancient Mayan pyramids, is wrapped in the jungle vegetation of Lacandona, inhabited by monkeys and jaguars, dotted with waterfalls. For all these riches, both natural and historical, Palenque has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.
San Cristóbal de las Casas is located in a valley, surrounded by mountains, in an area inhabited by Tzoltzil and Tzatzal populations. The square is the heart of the city, a very lively and colorful center, with the town hall and the cathedral. From here there are small cobblestone streets, traditional neighborhoods with brightly colored houses and markets selling beautiful local products, including jewels and vases.
The pleasant climate and the coffee aroma of Chiapas make this place even more fascinating, where it is not difficult to see residents wearing traditional clothes. Do climb of the steps leading to the Temple of San Cristobal, from which you can admire a unique view of the city and the mountains.
Tequila is located near a volcano, the Tequila, at the foot of the Rio Grande canyon, surrounded by agave crops that are protected by UNESCO. The city of Tequila is famous for the homonymous liqueur, which is produced in local distilleries and ranch and is a symbol of the culture and history of this place.
The agave cultivations in fact model the landscape, while the distilleries perfume the environment of aromas.
Todos Santos is a town in Baja California Sur with colorful buildings, cobblestone streets and lots of cactuses, overlooking the ocean and close to the desert.
A pleasant and characteristic holiday resort, however, Todos Santos is also rich in art galleries, being inhabited by different artists. A stop that deserves to be included during an itinerary to discover Baja California.
Tulum is a seaside resort overlooking the Caribbean Sea, declared Unesco heritage because of its Mayan ruins: here is the only archaeological site in the world directly on a beach, a very photogenic corner of Mexico.
Paradise Beach in Tulum is considered one of the most beautiful beaches of the entire Mayan Riviera, with the possibility of taking excursions to the coral reef and the Sian Ka'an biosphere reserve, which includes beaches, reefs, tropical forests and sand dunes.
Valladolid is interesting for its ancient and picturesque colonial mansions, but also for its natural beauties, including the underground springs of the X'kekén Cenote, accessible only through a small natural entrance, or the Cenote Zaci, in the open air.
Valladolid also boasts evidence of the ancient Mayan culture, found in its temples.