Saturday, December 02, 2006

A day trip to Taxco

We drove to Las Grutas (Grutas de Cacahuamilpa) near Taxco from Cuernavaca and when "the kids" found out it cost 50 pesos apiece to take the tour ... they didn't have enough money to go. They offered to wait two hours while I went but. instead we decided to drive to Taxco where Rake is from. A tour of the city and food in the market was cheaper than the tour of the caves.

Political rally in the Plaza

Looking up from the Plaza

Cathedral on the Plaza

Dance troop on the Plaza

An almost typical street in Taxco

Originally called Taxco de Alarcon, the silver capital of Mexico is located in Mexico’s southern region, 138 km (85 mi) north of Chilpancingo, the state capital of Guerrero, and 151 km (93 mi) south of Mexico City, off Highway 95. The climate is warm and humid, with an average year-round temperature of 19º C (66º F).

Considered one of Mexico’s most picturesque towns, this charming destination offers cobblestone streets, colonial buildings and white houses with red tile roofs. Another notable attraction of unparalleled beauty is the Catedral de Santa Prisca (Santa Prisca Cathedral), one of the most representative examples of baroque architecture in Mexico. During your stay, you also can visit the Humboldt and Borda houses, which have great historical and cultural value, or you can check out the Viceregal Art Museum and the Silver Museum; in the latter you’ll see incredible silver objects, such as earrings, necklaces bracelets and other items. Silverwork has long been a vital part of Taxco’s economy, thanks largely to American silversmith William Spratling, who had a strong influence on Mexican silver design.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006


The Spanish school (Encuentros) arranged a trip to Xochicalco one Saturday - approximately 20 miles from Cuernavaca. There is a small museum at the entrance to the site. Our guide knew the caretaker and we got a tour of the tunnel used by priests for celestial sightings. These pictures are from a trip back in 2002

Some much better pictures than my old ones - Xochicalco Park and Museum

Two other students and our guide in little town below after the trip

The ball court

Guess what

Another view

Looking down on a cold beer

Xochicalco whose name means "Place of the House of Flowers" in Náhuatl flourished between 700 and 900 A.D. It was once one of the most important cities in Mesoamerica and home to as many as 15,000 people. During the 20th century the ruins of this heavily fortified complex were extensively restored, and in 1999 Xochicalco was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Today, it is the largest and most-visited archaeological site in the state of Morelos.

The city of Xochicalco rose to prominence during the decline of Teotihuacan, whose immense ruins lie to the north of present day Mexico City. This powerful civilization had exerted its influence over most of Mexico for almost a millennium. Teotihuacan's collapse in the eighth century A.D. has still to be fully explained. Its demise left a power vacuum in Central Mexico that was filled first by Xochicalco and later by the Toltec city of Tula.

Xochicalco's origins remain something of a mystery. Its buildings bear the marks of several different cultures, including the Olmecs, the Zapotecs, and the Aztecs. However, the city's architecture and artwork are essentially Maya, leading archaeologists to believe that Xochicalco was founded by Maya traders from the Gulf Coast of the Yucatan peninsula. The strategic location south of Teotihuacan would have given them access to trade routes radiating out from the Valley of Mexico.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Balneario Las Palmas near Tahuixtla - Morelos

Balneario Las Palmas near Tahuixtla
I visted this place about 6 years ago with friends from Mexico City. Wasn't sure I could find it again but I did. All the pools are spring fed - not from the river. Very clean and nice management. It's about 40 kilometers from Cuernavaca on the Acapulco Autopista. Take the Tahuixtla exit but take the road to the right if you are headed south (don't cross the Autopista). As you come into the second small town about 12 kilometers from the hyway you'll see a sign on the left. Drive in about 1/4 km and you'll be at the front gate. The cost is 45 pesos for an all day visit and 110 pesos for over night camping.

Their Web Site - Balneario Las Palmas - Tehuixtla, Morelos

The front gate

There are three pools and this is the medium sized one

The drive thru the property

The second larger pool

The restaurant and wading pool

The river very full from summer rains

Monday, February 06, 2006


Tepoztlán is only about a 40 minute drive from Cuernavaca either on a Cuota or a Libre thru a few small towns. The most interesting part of Tepoztlán is it's location in a valley surrounded with striking rock formations. There is also a cool church, an ex-convento with a museo and a large market. Other than that, it's a small town worth a few hours.

View of the church with backdrop of mountains

The church

The museum

The market

One of the most interesting side-trips from Cuernavaca is to TEPOZTLÁN , just 20km to the northeast, and dramatically sited in a narrow valley spectacularly ringed by volcanic mountains. Until recently this was an entirely different world, an isolated agrarian community inhabited by Nahuatl-speaking people whose life can have changed little between the time of the Conquest and the beginning of the twentieth century. It was on Tepoztlán that Oscar Lewis based his classic study of Life in a Mexican Village and traced the effects of the Revolution on it: the village was an important stronghold of the original Zapatista movement

It's also the village where Quetzalcóatl, the Plumed Serpent god of the Aztecs, was born.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Cuernavaca Morelos

Part of the Cathedral with Jardin Borda a block ahead

Cuernavaca is the Capital City of the State of Morelos, Mexico. Located only 45 minutes from Mexico City (one hour and thirty minutes from the international airport) by the way of the Mexico-Acapulco expressway. Actually world-wide known as "The City of Eternal Spring" due to its excellent template climate with an annual average of 20ºC.

La Barranca del Amanalco - makes a nice city park

One of a few fountains in Jardin Borda - Free on Sundays

The ancient name of Cuernavaca is "Cuauhnahuac" in Nahuatl which means "Place near or by the side of the groove". Founded seven centuries ago almost a mile high in the Sierra Madre Mountains.

Until 1910, this state was the third major sugar cane producer world wide, after Hawaii and Puerto Rico, but peasants slaved without hope on the enormous sugar cane haciendas. When the Mexican Revolution began, most haciendas were burned to the ground.

For many years, Cuernavaca has been known as a resort where both Mexicans and foreigners come to enjoy the clean air, relax and enjoy the incomparable climate.

Popular restaurant on the Plaza

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