Guadalajara, Jalisco

Guadalajara, capital city of the state of Jalisco, is surrounded by three municipalities: Zapopan, Tlaquepaque and Tonala.

Guadalajara it´s considered the origin of important Mexican symbolisms, like Mariachis and Tequila. Now a day, remains the tradition and folklore. Guadalajara is the second bigger city in the country and is famous due to its business, culture and its nice weather all year around.

Guadalajara features 4 important tourist zones. The Historic Downtown, full with architectural, colonial pieces, Tlaquepaque is the main pottery center and also features delicious gastronomy, Zapopan, home of the second most important catholic sanctuary in the country, and Tonala, the most important craftsman symbol in Mexico.

Guadalajara Expo Zone features many shopping malls like Plaza Universidad, Gran Plaza Guadalajara, Plaza Fiesta and of course, Plaza del Sol, among others. Besides, there is a specialized mall dedicated only to shoes, which is called Gallery of the Shoe ware.

The Industrial Zone is in southeast section of Guadalajara, and it represents the industries of the city. Here is where the industrial park has been developed.

The expanding western sections of the city have witnessed the building of neighborhoods with numerous trees, green areas and stylish houses along the wide boulevards and avenues. For instance, the Minerva-Chapultepec district is a zone in West Guadalajara that features large buildings, some of them still inhabited by families but many of them have been turned into shops and restaurants.

When visiting Guadalajara, tourists should visit wonderful sites, among which are the Cathedral, the Government Palace, the Degollado Theater, the Regional Museum, the Central Square or "Plaza de Armas", the Laureles Square, the Roundabout of Illustrious Men, the Liberation Square, the Cabañas Cultural Institute, the Libertad Market, the Mariachis Square, the Modern Art Museum which presents interesting work pieces of both National and International artists or Las Calas Cultural Center, University of Guadalajara, redecorate building which offers two astonishing murals. Another beautiful building is called Los Arcos, a neo-Roman monument from the late 30´s. A tourist office is located at the bottom of it and visitors like to go to the top and enjoy a panoramic view of the city. An important site in this part of Guadalajara is the Basilica of Zapopan.

Beside its wonderful architecture, Guadalajara offers a great Zoo and a children amusement park named "Selva Magica" or Magic Forest. It features its own marine park with dolphin and seal shows.

Other attractions include bullfights at Plaza Nuevo Progreso from October to march, as well as soccer matches at Jalisco Stadium.

Between Mariano Otero Avenue and Cruz del Sur Avenue, two sites are of special interest: Expo Guadalajara and the World Trade Center. These two complex house everything you can think of regarding expositions, business center, financial services, travel agencies, restaurants, hotel accommodations, and entertainment offers.

Expo Guadalajara opened its doors in 1987 as the largest exposition center in Latin America. More than 120 event are held every year to which million of visitors have come. To get a rough idea of the size of this complex, it covers a surface of more than 500 thousand square feet, housing nine convertible modules to serve around 50 thousand visitors in one single day.

Recreational activities are held at Los Colomos Park, which is located in a forest within the city. And The Castle, a cultural center that offers nice green areas for picnics.

A large outdoor auditorium is known as "La Concha Acustica" or the Acoustic Shell and it often holds cultural activities. It is located within a traditional place of the city known as "Parque Agua Azul" or Blue Water Park.

Shopping in Guadalajara is a marvelous experience since here visitors will find the highest concentration of craftsmen in the world. From huge shopping malls to small stores and shops on shady side streets, Guadalajara offers it all.

"Libertad" Market, considered the largest in Latin America, is in the city center. Moreover, a few miles from downtown also Tlaquepaque is another great option for shopping and to appreciate handicraft processes.

Guadalajara's Japanese sister city, Kyoto, donated the Japanese Gardens which are an incredibly peaceful sanctuary for visitors of all ages.

In and around Guadalajara there are many excellent restaurants. From gourmet International cuisine to sidewalk taco stands, this city is proud to offer outstanding food options as music as well, visitors and locals have more options than in most tourist centers. From Opera, ballet, and theater, to piano bars, jazz, blues, rock, disco, or mariachi music establishments. All count for a very varied entertainment scenario.

Consulates from the United States, Canada, Holland, Germany, Spain, and France are located in Guadalajara.

Given the support of state authorities, the installation of business has been a growing trend in Guadalajara. This has led to an increasing number of Canadian and American residents in this city, the second most populated of the country.