/ The Mexico City Guide
Mexico — By Laura Nazimiec on May 24, 2010 at 2:40 pm
Filed under: City Escapes, featuredarticle

City Escapes: Taxco

The former silver mining town turned popular tourist destination of Taxco in the Mexican state of Guerrero is one of my favorite weekend getaways from Mexico City.  I love the steep, winding cobblestone streets, the beautifully restored colonial buildings painted bright white with red terra cotta rooftops, the fleet of white VW taxis that cruise the narrow streets and the tasty comida corrida served at the food stalls in the local market.


Taxco, Guerrero, Mexico

A former silver mining town built on a hillside and surrounded by mountains and cliffs, Taxco’s colonial architecture and status as a national historic monument help to make it one of the most picturesque towns in central Mexico.  Buildings cling to the hillside and the elegant Templo de Santa Prisca, a lovely example of 18th century baroque architecture, overlooks the central plaza.  The town is home to a history and archaeology museum, religious art museum, silver museum and cultural center.

There are a wealth of sleeping and dining options for travelers ranging from basic backpacker dorms and simple market fare to modern resorts and candlelit fine dining.  On a weekend night grab a balcony table at one of the restaurants or bars overlooking the plaza to take in all of the action as taxis and motorbikes zip through the streets and stray dogs beg for scraps from nearby street vendors.

Shopping for silver is a popular activity in Taxco and the town is home to hundreds of silver shops and small factories.  Be sure to check out the wholesale silver market located next to the Templo de Santa Prisca for low prices on some of the more traditional designs.  In late November and early December Taxco hosts a silver fair which includes a silver works and sculpture competition.

Taxco is a great place to explore.  While the center of town is relatively flat, most of the outlying area is built up the hillside.  Climbing the steep streets and stone staircases is exhausting but the part of town located up the hill and away from the center is worth visiting not only for the views, but to venture outside the tourist zone and catch a glimpse of what life is like for the local residents.  Fortunately, it’s easy to find your way.  All streets heading back down the hill eventually seem to converge on the central plaza.

Taxco, Guerrero, Mexico

Hotel Monte Taxco

For spectacular views overlooking the town take a ride on the teleférico, or aerial cable car, up the hillside to the Hotel Monte Taxco.  Non-guests are welcome to tour the property and enjoy the scenery, however if money is no option consider spending a night or two at this hilltop resort and country club which offers golf, tennis, swimming, spa services, an onsite restaurant, nightclub and some of the best views in town.  Prices start at MX$1,250.00 ($100) per night.

The town of Taxco (map) is located 160km (99 miles) southwest of Mexico City.  First class buses depart every hour from Mexico City’s South Bus Terminal at Taxqueña (map).  The ride takes between 2.5 and 3 hours and costs just under $9.00 each way.  It’s also possible, though more expensive, to rent a car, take an organized tour or hire a driver.

Photo Credits: Laura Nazimiec

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Tags: City Escapes, featuredarticle

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