After our last post where we announced that the blog hit one million views, we decided to take a short break from blogging and travel a bit.
We broke out the jeans, jackets and closed-toed shoes and headed to the city of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. Since the name of the city is a little long, I’ll be referring to it as simply SMA for the rest of the post.
The change in wardrobe was warranted because SMA is located 6,200 feet above sea level and the temperatures are much cooler than what these two beach bums are used to. During our stay, the temperature ranged from a high of 72°F during the day to a low of 58°F at night.
Where Is It?
SMA is a city of approximately 170,000 people located in the Mexican state of Guanajuato. Since many of our readers are geographically challenged when it comes to Mexico, I’ve taken the liberty of including an interactive map.
A Popular Expat Destination
SMA’s low cost of living, low crime rate and comfortable year-round temperatures make it one of the most popular destinations to settle among retirees from the United States and Canada. We had heard so many great things about this area from our fellow expats, that we had to check it out for ourselves.
Our original plan was to visit the area in the Spring of 2018, but we moved up our timetable after hearing about a new project from a real estate developer whose past projects impressed us a lot.
Although we’ll always be beach people, it wouldn’t be bad to have a little place in SMA whenever we want to take a break from the heat or a hurricane is headed our way.
I absolutely loathe long car rides, so when I heard that it would take 24 hours to drive there from Akumal, that only left us one option: going by plane.
We flew from Cancun to Querétaro Airport (2 hours and 25 minutes) and then took a transport van to SMA (1 hour and 22 minutes). I slept most of the way, so it felt like a 20 minute trip to me — not bad.
Our First Impressions
As we approached our hotel which was located a short walk from the cathedral, we were both impressed by the colonial architecture. The streets were narrow and it reminded us of our trip to Italy a couple of years earlier.
We quickly learned that much of the beauty and old world charm of this city is not visible from the street. We would go to restaurants or shops whose facade may have looked plain but once we passed through the entrance, we found ourselves in beautiful interior courtyards and gardens.
We had a wonderful time visiting as many restaurants and shops as we could, just to see what the interior spaces looked like. When we entered each location, it was like opening a present on Christmas morning.
Since it would have been rude to just look around a restaurant without ordering anything, we ended up putting on a couple of pounds in the interest of being polite. By the way, there are some excellent restaurants in SMA so it really wasn’t much of a sacrifice on our part.
We snapped a lot of pictures during our trip and we included some of our favorites in the photo gallery at the bottom of the post.
Let’s Wrap This Up
Since this was our first trip to SMA, we don’t have any useful insider tips to share with our readers — sorry about that.
If it’s any consolation, we plan on returning in the near future to further explore the city and open more presents — maybe we’ll be able to share some tips then.
Click on the thumbnail to see the full size image