Tequila City is a town of cultural, spiritual and spiritual heritage that is unparalleled in Mexico. This complete guide provides you with all the information so that you can fully enjoy the Magical Town of Jalisco.
Where is Tequila and how do I get there?
Tequila is the capital city of the municipality of the same name, located on the center – east side of the state of Jalisco.
It gives its name to the Mexican national drink, originally from the municipality, which constitutes the main economic foundation of the town since the 19th century. Tequila is only 69 km away. of Guadalajara and the Tapatíos are their most frequent visitors. Other state capitals near the Magic Town are Tepic, which is 154 km away. by Nogales / Mexico 15D; Aguascalientes, located 285 km. traveling towards Guadalajara; Colima, 247 km., And Guanajuato, 336 km.
How was the town founded?
The original tequileños were Chichimeca and Otomi Indians, who already got drunk with the juices without distilling the agave from long before the arrival of the Spaniards. The Iberians arrived shortly before 1530 and on April 15 of that year Santiago de Tequila was founded by Franciscan friars headed by Juan Calero, who would be executed in an indigenous uprising of 1541.
According to Christian tradition, Fray Juan was killed in the same space where the main altar of the church of San Juanito de Escobedo, a village located 45 km. of Tequila. The first tequila distillery was installed by Pedro Sánchez de Tagle in the year 1600, but the real takeoff of the drink arrived with José Cuervo at the end of the 18th century.
In 1824, Tequila was named head of one of the 26 departments of Jalisco. The designation as Magical Town arrived in 2002.
How is the Tequileño climate?
The climate of Tequila is of the semi-arid subtropical type, with springs and dry and temperate winters. The thermometer shows an annual average of 23 ° C, with the coldest season being from December to February, and the warmest from May to September.
In Tequila, about 1,075 mm of water are precipitated per year. The rainiest season runs between June and October. Between the months of November and May it rains little in the Magical Town of Jalisco.
What are the best things to see and do in Tequila?
You can start enjoying Tequila from the tourist railroad that departs from Guadalajara. In the Magic Town await you its picturesque streets and its tequila houses, old and modern, like the emblematic Mundo Cuervo. The National Museum of Tequila and the Los Abuelos Museum explain the traditional process of making the Mexican national drink. The Temple of the Immaculate Conception, the Municipal Palace and the old laundries, are places of obligatory visit. For outdoor entertainment accounts in Tequila with its extinct volcano and with the Los Azules Waterfall. Two places near Tequila that are essential to know are Amatitán and El Arenal. And of course, the festivities, standing out the National Tequila Fair; bars, taverns, restaurants and cozy hotels, complete the picture for an unforgettable stay, without forgetting the curious and traditional “blessing”.
How about you start on the railroad?
The railroad was the great ally of the production and distribution of tequila since the 19th century. It was used to distribute the drink throughout the national territory and to introduce it into the lucrative US market.
The picturesque but unproductive era of the tequila demijohns transported by the muleteers with their mule trains had come to an end. Currently, you can relive in a certain way the railway era of tequila with the José Cuervo Express. The train travels from the Guadalajara station to Tequila and the ticket plus includes an educational tasting conducted by an expert, tour of the La Rojeña factory and a Mexican show.
What if you continue with a walk in the streets?
An excellent way to start your tourist program in Tequila, immediately entering into a setting, is to walk the streets of the most representative blocks of the historic center. The picturesque streets are lined with shops selling all the liquid and solid products related to tequila. All the brands are present, from the industrial ones to the artisan ones and from those of national and world fame to others that you have surely never seen. In the craft shops you will get tequila ornaments, such as miniature agave pineapples, agave leaves and collection bottles. You can hardly do without the drinks on the road, but do not neglect it, because tequila makes you drunk fast.
How is Mundo Cuervo?
Cuervo is the founding dynasty of the tequila industry in Mexico and a name that has become a legend. It all started around 1781, when the founders acquired the first lands and received authorization from the Spanish crown to produce “mezcal wine”. The La Rojeña factory was founded in 1812, being the oldest beverage distillery in Latin America. When Cuervo began distributing tequila nationally in the 19th century, he decided to stamp the figure of a raven in the barrels, which is one of the first commercial brands in the country. Mundo Cuervo offers one of the most exciting walks through the history of tequila.
What is in the National Museum of Tequila?
This museum located in Ramón Corona 34 offers an entertaining walk through the origin of the drink in pre-Hispanic times until modernity. In the central courtyard you can see one of the old mills that were used to crush the huge agave pineapples and obtain the original must. Also, you can admire the containers that were used in the past for the fermentation process, as well as the distillation stills that give rise to the tequila. The museum also shows the old farming implements and tools that were used in the cultivation and care of agave plantations, as well as the bottles of tequila packaging used over time.
What awaits me at the Los Abuelos Museum?
The Sauza family is another name historically linked to Tequila Jalisco. There are already 5 tequila generations, so the current Sauza are great-great grandchildren. In the beautiful Los Abuelos Museum you will be able to see through photographs the origin and history of this family belonging to the “aristocracy of tequila” and learn about the process of making tequila by its most traditional method. On the tour you can admire the tools used 150 years ago in the production of tequila, as well as the furniture in use during the time. They have a small shop where you can buy local crafts. The Los Abuelos Museum is located in front of the main square.
How is the Church of the Immaculate Conception?
The temple of the Purisima, built in 1649, is a sober building made of stone blocks in colonial architectural style located opposite the main square of Tequila. It has a single tower with a double-arched bell tower and on the façade the entrance arch is flanked by Doric columns and has a niche with an image of San Miguel Arcángel. In the parish there is a chapel dedicated to Santo Toribio Romo González, Jalisco priest martyred in 1928 during the Cristero War. The interior of the church is of a single nave, standing out for its vaults, stained glass windows and for its main altarpiece of neoclassical style.
What is the interest of the Municipal Palace?
The Municipal Presidency of the town is not distinguished by the architecture of its construction, but it is one of the places most visited by tourists, who go especially to admire the monumental mural allegorical to the history of Tequila Jalisco, the work of the artist Manuel Hernández. The enormous fresco shows a bit of each historical facet of the Magical Town, including the indigenous origin, the agave and the transport of the pineapples on the back of a mule, the main characters during the Independence and other political periods and the typical charro shows of Jalisco, among the most important images.
When is the National Tequila Fair?
The Mexican national drink has its annual fair in Tequila, between November 30 and December 12. They are two weeks of overflowing party, since December 8 is the day of the Purísima Concepción, patron saint of the city, and the 12th is the feast of the Virgin of Guadalupe. The most important companies of the tequila industry mount their stands in which they exhibit their main products, offer tastings and attend the requests of tourists who wish to tour the plantations and factories.
The program of shows is very rich and intense, including folkloric dances and typical music, concerts, cultural events, gastronomic fair, palenques and charrería events.
How is the tradition of blessing?
If you go to Tequila for the first time, do not be surprised if you walk down the street at 9 o’clock at night and people suddenly start turning in the direction of the parish church to receive the Christian blessing. At that time, the priest goes out to offer his congratulations to the faithful, making them reach people who are far from the church by a triple ringing of the bells. Not only the Tequileños passers-by comply with the rite; also the people in their houses turn off radios and televisions and paralyze what they are doing to meet the wishes of health and prosperity imparted by the priest.
What are the old washing boards by the riverside?
In 1918, in the middle of a severe shortage of water, the tequileños requested to the city council that constructed some washings of clothes. The water from the streams that supplied the population was being stolen by the tequila factories. Cipriano Rosales, municipal president and owner of the La Castellana tequila, preferred not to disturb his colleagues and ordered the construction of 83 laundries with their water supplies and their slabs where the women washed and scrubbed the garments. These wash rooms are at the end of Tabasco Street and today constitute a tourist attraction that visitors go to see them to remember past times.
How do I get to Los Azules Waterfall?
This beautiful waterfall located a few minutes from the city of Tequila is reached by a narrow path down a steep ravine, so you have to be careful. To avoid getting lost in the inmense canyons tour companies offer a
Los Azules Tequila Waterfall Tour
The path is most picturesque and you may even be able to eat a fruit taken from the trees and bushes that grow wild in the place. The access in itself is a hiking exercise, so you have to wear the appropriate clothing and footwear. You can take a dip and swim in the pools formed by the fresh and crystal clear waters and practice some adventure sports, such as rappelling.
What interest does the Tequila Volcano offer?
The extinct Tequila volcano, with its summit at 2930 meters above sea level, is the natural sentinel of the Magical Town. It was considered a sacred mountain by the prehispanic indigenous peoples, mainly for providing obsidian, the hard volcanic stone with which they carved their sharp tools. In fact, the meaning of the word «Tequila» is «Place where it is cut». The predominant vegetation in the lower part is the oak forest and the flora changes as it rises, including the curious dwarf oaks. You can do some comforting walks on the slopes of the mountain and if you reach crater, you can practice sky-diving.
What can I see in Amatitán?
Amatitán disputes to Tequila the cultural hegemony around tequila. The agave plantations and the tequila factories constellate the landscape. In 1870, Don Felix Lopez founded the Herradura House in Amatitán and the brand is one of the best known nationally and internationally. In 2007 it was acquired by the US company Brown-Forman, but they still make their tequila in Amatitán by roasting the agave in clay ovens and using wild yeast in the fermentation. A museum currently operates in the original factory of Herradura. Other attractions of the town of Amatitán are the temple of the Immaculate Conception, the Chapel of Carmen and the Cola de Caballo waterfall.
What are the attractions of El Arenal?
Only 22 km. El Arenal is a beautiful locality that is part of the “agave landscape and old industrial facilities of Tequila” along with Tequila and Amatitán, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2006. The Arenal plain of El Arenal is a Beauty and its tequila factories invite you to enjoy the ancestral drink. In the center of town you can see the main square, with its fountain and nice kiosk, as well as the parish church of Nuestra Señora del Rosario. El Arenal is surrounded by former haciendas that still preserve testimonies of the manufacture of tequila in the past, such as tahonas for the grinding of agave.
How is the local cuisine?
In Tequila you can taste an excellent jalisciense birria. The original recipe of this emblematic dish of Jalisco is with goat, but the relative scarcity of this meat has determined that sheep, pork and beef are also used. Apart from the meat, the essential ingredients in a Jalisco style birria are roasted chiles (guajillo, morita, bell and red width) and pulque.
To drink, we are not going to recommend a combination of tequila or pulque, but we are going to suggest you try a tejuino, a typical Mexican drink made with fermented corn and piloncillo, which in its Jalisco version has lemon and salt.
Can I buy a genuine tequila gift?
The Jalisco craftsmen of the wood make beautiful little barrels with red stick, a regional species of oak with an attractive reddish hue. These small barrels can be decorated with motifs agave and tequila and are a magnificent piece of practical and decorative use in the bar of the house. Another artisan line that the popular tequila makers work with are some amphoras lined with pork skin that tourists hurry to fill with freshly made tequila at an excellent price. They also make pieces of clay and weave clothing accessories with pita or candelilla, a vegetable fiber.
What are the main Tequila Events and Celebrations?
Apart from the feasts of the Immaculate Conception and the Virgin of Guadalupe, which are celebrated in December as part of the National Tequila Fair, in the Magical Town there are other festivities, among which we must mention the cantes, the days of San Juan and San Pedro, on June 24 and 29. This party gets its name because the locals play throwing in the field small clay figures in the shape of pitchers, with pebbles inside, which turn them into rattles. For the occasion, tradition dictates that the Tequila girls wear a red suit similar to that of the ticks that circulate in the grass.
Can I do a tavern tour in Tequila?
The word “tavern” is globally associated with an establishment of a popular atmosphere in which alcoholic beverages are served; nevertheless, in the Mexico of the commercial origins of the tequila, the tavern was the place in which the drink was distilled and of course the place where the circuit of sale began.
Hire a local expert guide for a Best Tour to Tequila The taverns were installed in the agave haciendas and some of those who worked clandestinely to circumvent the Spanish crown’s prohibition were La Rojeña, Villa Tequila, La Chorrera and La Estancita. Several of these old “taverns” are now industrial emporiums and you can tour them. For the the best Tequila Experience try Tour Tequila departing from Guadalajara Every day. Now, if what you are looking for is a tour of taverns understood as canteens, you can also do it in an unforgettable night of clubs and bars.
Where do you recommend staying?
The Hotel is a nice lodging that works in a colonial building located at Calle Mexico 138 in the center of Tequila. It is spacious and comfortable rooms and has a spa and sauna. Hotel Solar de las Ánimas is another charming accommodation, with impeccable cleanliness, located in Ramón Corona, 86. Hotel Boutique La Cofradía, in Calle La Cofradía 1297, is an establishment of cabins surrounded by agaves, which has a small museum about the elaboration of tequila.
Hotel La Rienda, Plaza Rubio and Casa Dulce María are other magnificent accommodation options in Tequila.
What are the best places for a time of clubs and bars?
In the list of the “50 best bars in the world” published in 2013 by the prestigious magazine Drinks International Magazine, there is one single Mexican establishment: La Capilla. This Tequila bar has become famous for its cocktail “Batanga”, an incredibly simple preparation, based on white tequila, cola, salt and lemon juice. The Bar Destilados is located on Calle Juárez 91 in downtown Tequila and offers not only distilled spirits. It is the favorite of the local young people for the ambientazo and many tourists arrive asked by him. It has karaoke and the prices are reasonable; The only bad thing is that it closes at 2 AM, usually between the protests of the tipsy parishioners.
What are the best restaurants in Tequila?
La Antigua Casona, in front of the main square, in a house of exquisite Mexican and international food in a beautifully structured and decorated environment. Fonda Cholula, located in José Cuervo 54, next to the La Rojeña factory, is a place praised for its regional dishes and snacks.
The Palomar has a good view of the square and the customers praise the breast of tequila, the chilaquiles, the freshness of the bread and the excellent coffee.
If you fancy some fruit of the sea or Spanish food, you can go to El Marinero; and if you are looking for an authentic Jalisco-style birria, we recommend Fonda Chivo & Vaca.