The discovery of rich silver and gold deposits (especially the former)
boosted the development of the colonial city, founded in 1570. Later
a Royal certificate would grant it the title of "Loyal City of Santa
Fe and Royal Mines of Guanajuato
Such a pompous title was explained on a weighty and irrefutable economic reason: two thirds of the silver that poured out of the coffers of the Spanish Crown during the colonial period, was extracted from La Valenciana, a mine deposit discovered in 1548.
When times began to change and rumours of independence grew in Mexico,
was the scenario of a notable historic
event: the capture of the garrison and prison of Alhóndiga de Granaditas
(currently turned into a museum), which took place on October the
28th of 1810 and meant a victory for the libertarian forces.
History has another bastion in the town of colonial roots of Dolores de Hidalgo, located at 54 kilometres from Guanajuato. Father Miguel Hidalgo would start the struggle for independence in this place on September the 16th of 1810, with the famous "Cry of Dolores", a call to break the colonial chains.
These are events of the past that are useful to understand the importance
, a city that was declared Cultural
Patrimony of Humanity by UNESCO in 1988, due to the value of its
architectonic legacy, which is clearly evident on the Basilica of
Our Lady of Guanajuato
, built between 1671 and
Other constructions of great interest are the Temple of San Diego (of characteristics proper of the Spanish style of Churriguera) and the mansion of the Earls of Rul and Valenciana, a splendid work of neoclassical style built during the XVIII century. It is currently the seat of the Superior Court of Justice.
The most transcendent cultural event in Mexico takes place in Guanajuato
capital of the homonymous state: the International Cervantino Festival,
which has its origins in the representation of the so-called Cervantino
Interludes, brief plays of one act that began to be staged in 1953.
The Cervantino Iconographic Museum surged from this cult to the so-called "One-Handed of Lepanto", which exhibits artworks inspired on Quixote of La Mancha, the chevalier of the sad figure and his loyal squire, Sancho Panza, universal characters created by the renowned Spanish author. The artworks are fruit of the geniality of Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso and Mario Orozco Rivera, amongst others.
, located at 2000 metres above sea level
and 300 plus kilometres north of the City of Mexico, is nowadays
a city loaded with a past. Today its treasures do not pack the coffers
of the Spanish Crown, but they contribute to enrich the memories
of the travellers that get delightedly lost in its steep and narrow