Thursday, January 21, 2010

Vampires in San Miguel de Allende?

A few months ago, we took this picture of the recently restored gas pump on Calle Juarez. Looking over our archived pictures today, we noticed a very peculiar thing with this particular picture. There is a shadow of what appears to be a man to the left of the shadow cast by the gas pump, but there is no man!

Could it be a special kind of shadow casting vampire. Could the spirit of Ignacio Allende still be in limbo right here in San Miguel de Allende after all these years? Is the man perfectly situated directly behind the pump as we snapped the shot? We're voting for the shadow casting vampire!


Getting around Mexico City Airport with Lots of Luggage

You just cleared customs, and the guard informs you that you cannot take your luggage cart beyond this point. What do you do? You hire a luggage valet. These guys can haul literally hundreds of pounds of luggage, and they will escort you anywhere you need to go within the airport. Think of them as your personal human airport GPS system with muscles.

The tip amount is up to you. Keep in mind what you would pay for a luggage cart with no GPS system at a US airport ($4 USD at SFO,) and factor down from there.

For information on getting to Antigua Capilla B&B in San Miguel de Allende from various airports look at our blogs labeled "Transportation."


Getting From MEX Customs to the Airport Bus Terminal

About a 5 minute walk -

It is very easy to get to the Mexico City International Airport Bus Terminal from the Customs area. We’ll get to that in a second, but first you should know the following two important things:

1. You are not permitted to take your luggage cart beyond the Customs area. If you have lots of luggage, once you clear Customs you'll need to hire an official airport luggage valet (you decide on the fee/tip, but $20 to $40 Pesos depending on the load should do it.) See our “Getting around Mexico City Airport with lots of Luggage” blog for more information.

2. If you need to withdraw Pesos from the ATM, do it inside the Customs area. The area is secure and relatively calm compared to the rest of the airport. You'll find a couple of ATM's near the luggage carousels.

Upon exiting Customs, head to the left and walk about thirty meters or so (look up and you will see ground transportation signs.) Turn left and head towards the ramp. Go up the ramp to the upper level.

At the top of the ramp walk straight ahead (check the overhead signs) to the very end of the hall.

You’ve made it to the Primera Plus ticket counter. If you're headed to Antigua Capilla Bed and Breakfast in San Miguel de Allende, purchase your ticket to Queretaro. Read our “Mexico City International (MEX) to San Miguel by Bus” blog to learn what to do once you get to Queretaro. With ticket in hand, head right and down the stairs.

Once downstairs, make a U-turn. The Primera Plus busses are parked at the very end of the terminal (below the ticket counter). Now, wasn’t that easy!

For the rest of your journey read our “Mexico City International (MEX) to San Miguel by Bus” blog.


Monday, January 11, 2010

Winter Bike Ride from Dolores Hidalgo to San Miguel de Allende

From left to right, our guide Daniel, Bob, Sang, Chris, Deb and Paul

Last December, we joined a few of our guests on a bike trip from Dolores Hidalgo to San Miguel de Allende. From Antigua Capilla Bed and Breakfast, we walked to Bici-Burro, a local bike outfitter, and hopped in their van for the 27 mile drive to Dolores Hidalgo.

Riding the Camino Real back to San Miguel de Allende

After a quick drive in and out of Dolores Hidalgo for the benefit of those who had never been there, we were dropped off at a gas station just outside of town to begin our ride back to San Miguel. We road on the Camino Real, the colonial era road that originally linked the two towns. We could still see some of the original cobblestones in certain sections.

The majority of the trip was through scenic farmland, and occasionally we came across an interesting chapel or colonial era building. We saw very few people. A couple of times, however, we had to move off the road to let pass a procession of catholic pilgrims on multi-day journeys.

Bicycles share this road with pilgrims!

About 7 miles before reaching San Miguel de Allende, we stopped at the UNESCO site of the Sanctuary of Atotoniclo for a quick rest. We refueled on liquids and gorditas, hand formed thick tortillas that are split open and stuffed with various meats and/or vegetables (like a pita). We never pass up an opportunity to munch on street food!

Deb and Paul in front of the Sanctuary of Atotonilco

Bob and Sang Enjoying a Gordita

What a great winter activity. There were a couple of ascents, but they were manageable. If you’re relatively active, you will definitely enjoy this trip.

If you're interested in seeing more pictures, click here.

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Monday, January 4, 2010

Looking for a Place for Drinks in San Miguel de Allende? Go to Drinks!

Drinks is a new boutique bar located on Correo 17, up the street from the Jardin in San Miguel de Allende. The bar has an excellent selection of international beer, wine and bubbly.

We especially like the beer selection, as good quality beer is hard to find in San Miguel de Allende. Apart from the beer at El Gozo on Zacateros 85, you'll find nothing but the usual Mexican national brands, the ones that require a squeeze of lime or spicy tomato to mask their skunkiness. You know the ones.

The interior decor at Drinks is modern, which seems to be very popular these days with some of the newer establishments. Everything is painted white, and the back wall becomes the focal point with its colorful selection of alcoholic beverages.

Recently, we attended the Drinks Grand Opening Celebration hosted by the owners Katharine and Jose Antonio. They did an excellent job at transforming their cozy modern bar into a grand space for the event, complete with trapeze artists hanging from the ceiling!

Katharine and Jose Antonio, Owners of Drinks in San Miguel de Allende

From Antigua Capilla Bed and Breakfast, walk down to the Jardin, and look for Correo Street. You can’t miss it. Then, when you’ve had your fill, take a taxi back to the inn. Navigating the cobblestone streets after consuming a few drinks can be tricky!

Grand Opening Celebration at Drinks in San Miguel de Allende

By the way, Jose Antonio also owns San Miguel Rent a Car on Codo 9, Local 2. If you need a car, he’s your man. Just remember to drop off your car first before heading to Drinks!

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