Mexico: Mexico Expo - Guadalajara, Mexico


















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Guadalajara offers more surprises to the Mexico traveler than any other city in the country. Those who do not know this distinguished city are almost always amazed at how much Guadalajara has to offer. As Mexico's second largest city with over 7 million inhabitants, Guadalajara offers all of the conveniences of a big city with the charm and character of a small town. Like it's neighbor Mexico City, one could spend many days exploring and enjoying the flavors of Guadalajara and still leave wanting for more.

Like the rest of Mexico, Guadalajara has a tumultuous history. Founded in 1542, the city has experienced Indian uprisings, European invasions, and was even a key site during the Mexican Revolution. The mix of people living in Guadalajara today are the offspring of this diverse background, as well as a host of citizens from other parts of Mexico looking for a better life.

Today's Guadalajara is very provincial in nature, the local Tapatios are a warm and gracious population and a pleasure to meet. The city itself offers a special blend of colonial charm not usually found in such a large city. Well maintained plazas, public parks and gardens, sidewalk cafes, colonial buildings and well kept homes join together to present a very pleasant city with a strong sense of pride at every turn.

To purchase a good map of Guadalajara visit the web site of MEXICO MAPS.

The UNIVERSITY OF GUADALAJARA web site has information for students who wish to study and experience the Mexican culture.

Guadalajara is the heart of many of the cultural items we think of as truly Mexican. It is the home of MARIACHI MUSIC, the Mexican Hat Dance, and the Mexican Cowboy (Charro). Even TEQUILA, the national drink of Mexico, was developed on the outskirts of town and is still a very big part of the local economy. A visit to Guadalajara is a wonderful way to become fully immersed in the Mexican culture.

Located at an elevation of over 5,000 feet above sea level yet in the tropics, Guadalajara offers one of the finest climates in the world. The weather is generally mild all year long, with slight variations throughout the various seasons. Daytime temperatures are often in the 70's in the winter, and sneak up into the 90's in summer. Rainfall is minimal, and clear skies are common most of the time.

The on-line newspaper GUADALAJARA REPORTER is a good source of information to see what's happening in and around Guadalajara.

The charm and many advantages of Guadalajara could not be kept a secret, and now thousands of American and Canadians have chosen this town and neighboring Lake Chapala as their retirement home. Living is very affordable by most standards, and the international airport makes hopping home and easy trek. For more information visit the web site of CHAPALA LIVING.

Guadalajara draws a visitor looking to experience the true culture of Mexico. And even those looking for the more traditional Mexican vacation destination can enjoy this special city, and then hop down to the nearby seaside towns of Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo just a short drive away.

For more information on this special Mexican city visit the official GUADALAJARA TOURISM web site.

Click here for a MAP OF GUADALAJARA.

Check out today's GUADALAJARA WEATHER.

For the bigger picture check out the SATELLITE VIEW of the weather in Mexico.

For lots of good information on what's happening in Guadalajara visit MEX WEB!

Do you have a fun vacation option for Guadalajara that you would like to share with Mexico Expo? If so you can inform us on our SUMBISSION PAGE.

For a look at what's happening in Mexico drop by the MEXICO EVENT CALENDAR of Mexico Expo.


At first glance Guadalajara's immense size leads visitors to believe that there is no way to become intimate with the city. But a stroll along Plaza Tapatia in downtown Guadalajara proves otherwise. This 7 block long plaza is the perfect place to capture the flavor that many feel is the essence of today's Mexico. Restaurants, shops, flowered walkways and a constant stream of pedestrians makes Plaza Tapatia a great first stop. The colorful vendors, fountains, statues and pools only add to this unique setting. A visit at night will usually yield music and other types of entertainment.

The nearby town of Lake Chapala has captured the hearts of many Mexicans and folks from the U.S. For more information on this charming hideaway drop by our LOCAL INTEREST section.


Looking for a relaxing way to take in the sights of downtown Guadalajara? Horse-drawn carriages clip-clop their way down the streets allowing you to enjoy the sights and sounds of this classic city. This is also the perfect way to begin or end an evening of dining and entertainment!




Guadalajara does not have it's own beaches, but it's just a short drive to two of Mexico's best beach resorts. Both PUERTO VALLARTA and MANZANILLO are just a short drive from Guadalajara, and each of these two towns offers a different type of beach experience.

For additional information on protecting your skin while enjoying the tropical Mexican sun take a look at the SUNSCREEN TIPS section of Mexico Expo.






There is a pier in Puerto Vallarta at the foot of Francisca Rodriguez which compliments the facilities in Marina Vallarta north of town. Beaches run north and south of town in both directions for many miles!

Northern Beaches and Southern Beaches.



The northern beaches are the beaches that start just north of town and go all the way up to the northern part of the bay at Punta Mita.

North to south:



    Located next to the Nuevo Vallarta Marina.
    The further you get from the marina entrance the better the beaches area.



    Located north of town below the cruise ship docks.
    Great beaches with hotels right behind the sand. Lots of action!



    Located in front of the Plaza las Glorias Hotel.
    Nice sand and a good swimming beach.



    Located just north of town, the closest beach accessible from downtown as you head north.
    A good beach attracting locals and tourists...busy on weekends.



Southern beaches start at downtown Puerto Vallarta and head south all the way to Mismaloya Beach and beyond.



    Located just south of town, accessed by Calle Olas Altus.
    A good beach for just hanging out and getting sun.
    Not as good for swimming because it is so close to the river.
    Can get somewhat crowded and very active on weekends.



    Located approximately one mile south of Playa de los Muertes.
    A series of small beaches and coves within walking distance to town. Easy access down from Highway 200.
    Good for relaxing, surf fishing, and minor snorkel excursions.
    Most popular because of it's proximity to town.



    Located about 2 miles south of town off of Highway 200, just south of the Hotel Camino Real.
    A very pleasant beach for sunbathing and relaxing.
    Used by the locals and tourists alike. For more privacy walk 200 yards north to the beach at Hotel Camino Real.



    Located one half mile south of Playa el Gato.
    A beautiful beach more prone to locals, especially on weekends.



    Located about a mile past the Hotel Camino Real.
    Another quiet beach, rarely crowded.



    Located just past popular Mismaloya Beach, past the Mismaloya River.
    The main attraction here is the incredible rocks just offshore, which offer waters perfect for snorkeling. Watch for boat traffic as this is a popular spot!



    Located about 6 miles south of town, off of Mexico Highway 200.
    A beautiful protected cove with clear water and white sand surrounded by a lush green jungle.



    Located three miles south of Mismaloya.
    A remote jungle-fringed beach and river mouth where you can rent boats to explore beaches further south!



    Located south along the coast from Boca de Tomatlan.
    A beach paradise! A quiet beach with seafood palapa restaurants and wonderful snorkeling.



    Located south of Las Animas.
    A very remote beach with few crowds, accessible by boat.
    A nearby waterfall is a great place to cool off!



    Located 30 minutes south of Puerto Vallarta, accessible only by boat.
    This clear warm cove surrounded by verdant green hills is home to a few dozen Mexican families and a few ex-patriots from the U.S.
    Accessible only by boat, Yelapa will take you back in time to a much slower pace. Palapa restaurants are located on the beach, and a waterfall cascades in the hills above the beach. Overnight rustic accommodations are available at Hotel Lagunitas for about $25 U.S. per night by calling 011-52 (329) 8-0554.




Manzanillo offers two beautiful bays, each with sandy beaches for those who want to spend some time along the coast. Manzanillo Bay is the closest bay to the city of Manzanillo, and therefore has more boat traffic. Santiago Bay is located just west of Manzanillo Bay, and tends to be more removed from commercial boating activity. Both bays offer nice beaches.






The beaches in Santiago Bay, on Manzanillo's north side, are the city's best. Free of the commercial boat traffic usually found on Manzanillo Bay to the south, the beaches in Santiago Bay are perfect for enjoying Manzanillo's great coast.



    Located in the center of Santiago Bay, north of the Santiago Peninsula.
    Great for sunning, windsurfing and boogie boards.



    Located to the south end of Santiago Bay, just in from the Santiago Point.
    Calm and protected for swimming and snorkeling, lush background.



The beaches of Manzanillo Bay receive some commercial boating at the south end, so the better beaches here are at the north end.



    Located in the northwest corner of Manzanillo Bay.
    A steep sand drop off creates currents. Better for sunning than swimming.



    Located right in the middle of Manzanillo Bay.
    A good swimming and sunning beach, especially at the southern end.



    Located towards the southeast end of Manzanillo Bay.
    A popular beach for tourists with restaurants right on the beach!



    Located 30 miles south of Manzanillo.
    Famous for huge waves, black sand and bright green water.




Guadalajara is a huge city and the hotel accommodations are very diverse. The hotels cater to Guadalajara's many business needs, to destination visitors, and to travelers just passing through.

Most visitors choose their hotel based on where they will be spending the majority of their time. For visitors with a cultural interest there are many hotels located in downtown Guadalajara, just a short walk or cab ride to the city's best attractions. There are also many visitors who spend much of their time in the Lake Chapala area, just south of Guadalajara. Most of these people are retired Americans, Canadians and Mexicans.

When checking rates for hotels, be sure to ask if the room rate quoted includes the Mexican taxes and service charges.

For a different type of getaway the RIO CALIENTE SPA AND NATURE RESORT is located just 45 minutes from Guadalajara. - Great rooms at Great Prices!







    Telephone 011-52 (333) 134-2424.
    Fax 011-52 (333) 134-2404.
    Avenida Vallarta #5005, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, 45040.
    Number of rooms: 198.
    Rooms and suites.
    Hotel amenities: 2 restaurants / 2 bars / tennis court / 4 pools / gym / miniature golf / table tennis / meeting rooms / parking.
    Room amenities: Televisions / telephones.
    Located minutes from the Convention Center and from Centro Magno.
    Check out their web site for additional information.
    Master Card and Visa accepted.



    Telephone 01-800-368-3200.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 616-3817.
    Avenida Vallarta #2477, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, 44130.
    Number of rooms: 72.
    One and two bedroom suites.
    Hotel amenities: Restaurant / bar / fax service / parking.
    Room amenities: Televisions / telephones.
    Located 5 minutes from the Convention Center and from Centro Magno.
    Check out their web site for additional information.
    Master Card and Visa accepted.



    Telephone 01 (800) 368-3200.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 716-3817.
    Avenida Vallarta #2452, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, 44130.
    Number of rooms: 48.
    Hotel amenities: Restaurant / bar / parking.
    Room amenities: Televisions / telephones.
    Good central location to downtown Guadalajara's main sights.
    Master Card and Visa accepted.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1250.
    Avenida Galeana #22-A.
    Located near the center of town.
    Number of rooms: 5.
    Hotel amenities: Two stories.
    Room amenities: Fans.
    Some rooms feature spas.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1027.
    Avenida Constitucion #105.
    PMB 71-387, Loredo, Texas, 78041.
    Number of rooms: 8.
    Hotel amenities: Pool.
    Room amenities: Shower only.
    Fenced parking area.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1052.
    Chapala Highway.
    Post Office Box 76, 45920.
    Located 3 blocks northwest of the main plaza.
    Number of rooms: 30.
    Two bedrooms units available.
    Hotel amenities: Pool.
    Room amenities: Kitchenettes.
    Master Card and Visa accepted.
    Apartment type lodging.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 613-4646.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 613-7310.
    Venustiano Carranza #16, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Number of rooms: 137.
    Rooms and suites.
    Hotel amenities: Pool / restaurant / bar / meeting facilities / room service.
    Room amenities: Air conditioning / terraces.
    Visa and Master Card accepted.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 614-5714.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 613-4005.
    Avenida Corona #160, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Located 3 blocks from the main cathedral.
    Number of rooms: 269
    Rooms and suites.
    Hotel amenities: Restaurant / bar / meeting facilities / travel desk.
    Room amenities: Air conditioning / safety deposit boxes.
    Master Card and Visa accepted.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 615-0502.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 616-1112.
    Avenida de la Paz #2055, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Number of rooms: 185.
    Rooms and suites.
    Hotel amenities: Pool / restaurant / bar / meeting facilities.
    Room amenities: Telephones / satellite television.
    Master Card and Visa accepted.




    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1344.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-1444.
    Avenida Donato Guerra #9, Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico, 45920.
    Post Office Box 30, Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico, 45920.
    Number of rooms: 23.
    Hotel amenities: Restaurant, gift shop, meeting rooms.
    Room amenities: Some kitchenettes.
    Meal plan also available, plus short term rates.
    Surf their web site for additional information.
    American Express, Master Card and Visa accepted.



    Telephone 011-52 (376) 766-1174
    Calle Zaragoza Pte. #29, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Number of rooms: 20
    Hotel amenities: Bed and breakfast.
    Room amenities: Fans.
    Prices under $30 per night.
    Review their web site for additional information.



    Telephone (800) 501-9446.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 765-5174.
    Number of rooms: 14.
    Hotel amenities: Pool / secluded garden.
    Room amenities: Televisions / telephones / hairdryers.
    English elegance with Mexican charm.



    Telephone / fax 011-52 (33) 763-0657.
    Apdo Postal #33, Jocotepec, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Number of rooms: 6.
    Hotel amenities: Pool / views / artist studio.
    Room amenities: Kitchenettes.
    Review their web site for more information.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-2377.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-2331.
    Calle Hidalgo #22, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico, 45920.
    Located about 5 miles west of Chapala.
    Number of rooms: 6.
    Hotel amenities: Laundry.
    Room amenities: Fans.
    Master Card and Visa accepted.
    Well kept rooms on the ground floor.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-0383.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-2331.
    Calle Colon #33, Ajijic, Colima, Mexico, 45920.
    Located near the center of Ajijic.
    Number of rooms: 10.
    Hotel amenities: Meal plan available.
    Room amenities: Showers, fans.
    American Express, Master Card and Visa accepted.
    Short walk to town plaza.





Guadalajara's recreational options are similar to Mexico City. Both towns offer the kind of recreation you might expect from a city with millions of people. For those who enjoy beach recreation, Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo are only a half day drive away.

For additional information on protecting your skin while enjoying the tropical Mexican sun take a look at the SUNSCREEN TIPS section of Mexico Expo.





Golf is very popular in Guadalajara, and there are at least 7 good golf courses in the general area. Unlike the coastal resort towns in Mexico where it can get too hot to play mid-day, Guadalajara's higher altitude makes for comfortable playing all day long.

For information on golf packages to Guadalajara and other Mexican resorts check with the folks at BEST GOLF for prices and destinations.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 689-2783.
    Post Office Box 1-2376, Guadalajara, Mexico.
    Number of holes: 18.
    Par: 72.
    Rating: 70.6.
    Champ: 6,742 / Men: 6,378 / Women: 5,589.
    Carts and caddies available.
    Designed by Joe Fingers.
    Daily play and golf packages available.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 675-2281.
    Located at Lake Chapala, 25 minutes south of Guadalajara.
    Number of holes: 9.
    Par: 4 par 4's and 5 par 3's.
    Privately owned course.
    Very affordable rates.



    Located in Guadalajara, Mexico.
    Number of holes: 18.
    Par: 72.
    Champ: 6,600 / Men: 6,400 / Women: 5,900.
    Carts and caddies available.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 817-2858.
    Post Office Box 6-514, Guadalajara, Mexico.
    Number of holes: 18.
    Par: 72.
    Rating: 70.8.
    Champ: 6,821 / Men: 6,490 / Women: 5,464.
    Caddies available.
    Very private course. Site of the Annual Senior's Invitational.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 685-0412.
    Post Office Box 44-B, Guadalajara, Mexico.
    Number of holes: 18.
    Par: 72.
    Rating 71.0.
    Champ: 6,663 / Men: 6,326 / Women: 5,228.
    Carts and caddies available.
    Original home to the Bing Crosby College Invitational.



    Located in Guadalajara, Mexico.
    Number of holes: 9.
    Par: 36.
    Champ: 3,400 / Men: 3,100 / Women: 2,900.
    Caddies available.
    A basic course in good condition.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 686-0361.
    Post Office Box 11, Guadalajara, Mexico.
    Number of holes: 18.
    Par: 72.
    Rating: 70.8.
    Champ: 6,811 / Men: 6,546 / Women: 5,521.
    Carts and caddies available.



Several of Guadalajara's larger hotels offer tennis courts, as well as some of the golf courses. Inquire at the front desk of your hotel for information on the courts nearest you.




Guadalajara is a city that offers the authentic flavor of Mexico, both culturally and culinary. To meet the needs of it's 7 million inhabitants Guadalajara offers eateries from taco stands (delicious!) to first class restaurants ($$$!). Whatever your preference, there's a good chance you can pull up a plate to make you happy in Guadalajara.

For a fun run at a variety of types of food, a stroll through Mercado Libertad provides small stands offering a wide selection of foods. These shops are all individually owned, so "grazing" from stand to stand to find the best place to eat is a good idea.

Prices are generally reasonable in Guadalajara's eateries. As in most parts of Mexico tipping the waiter or waitress is appreciated, although a tip of 10% is considered normal. Of course larger tips for excellent service are always appreciated.

Most of the larger restaurants in Guadalajara accept dollars and credit cards. If you are paying in U.S. dollars it helps if you use smaller denomination bills.

For travelers with no imagination Guadalajara offers a variety of U.S. fast food franchises. Billions and billions sold. If you see the Golden Arches keep on driving. You can eat fast food when you get back home.



    Telephone 011-52 (376) 766-1155.
    Apdo #528, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico, 48920.
    Located not too far from the lake.
    Web site:
    Open daily.
    Pancho's offers the largest collection of tequila in the known universe.
    A casual place for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
    Hosts John and Mary Bragg are good people, and will do their best to make every customer a happy camper!



    Calle Corona, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    2 blocks south of Plaza de Armas.
    Specialty: Roasted meats.
    Breakfast and regional dishes also available.



    Avenida Chapultepec North #110, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Near Avenida Independencia.
    Specialty: Tacos.
    Many other types of Mexican food also.



    Avenida Lerdo de Tejada #2043, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Near the United States Consulate office.
    Specialty: French.
    One of the nicest restaurants in town. Jacket required.



    Plaza del Sol Mall.
    Specialty: Sandwiches.
    Also serving soups, pasta and Mexican food.



    In Plaza Bonita and Plaza del Sol.
    Specialty: Coffee shop food.
    Breakfasts, lunches and dinners.
    Check out their book store adjacent to the restaurant!




Although not quite as active as Mexico City, Guadalajara does have a very active nightlife. Restaurants, dance clubs and various forms of evening entertainment will keep the visitor busy well into the evening.

On weekend evenings various musicians and groups set up in Plaza Tapatia in downtown Guadalajara. The festive atmosphere of the plaza is complimented by vendors, shops and restaurants and is a good place to drink in the lighter side of this bustling city.

Most of the larger hotels have lounges that cater to visitors and business people, often featuring entertainment and dancing. For die-hard dancers there are discos throughout town that pump up the music until after 3 a.m.!

Guadalajara is the home of Mariachi music and if you have the opportunity to catch one of these talented groups in action consider yourself lucky. This music reflects the very soul of many of Mexico's residents.

Taxis are the best way to get around Guadalajara at night. For safety reasons it is best not to obtain a cab by flagging them down off the street. It is usually best to pick up a taxi at a legitimate taxi stand which are usually found in front of hotels, restaurants and night spots. Tipping the taxi driver is appreciated but not always expected.




If you like to shop you'll love Guadalajara! Shopping options are plentiful and diverse, everything from street-side vendors to high class boutiques.

Prices tend to be very competitive and are sometimes negotiable. As a general rule the nicer the shopping establishment is the less likely they are going to want to negotiate with you. However even the nicer shops might be willing to haggle with you if you are buying several items at a time or are spending big bucks.

Most of the established shops will accept credit cards and U.S. dollars, although they typically frown on large denomination currency such as $50's and $100's. Taking a good supply of smaller bills also helps you with your negotiating at some of the smaller shops.

Some shops are closed for siesta from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. but then they usually remain open later into the evening.

If you are so busy enjoying the sites in Guadalajara that you don't have time to go out and shop, most of the larger hotels have shopping areas as well as the Guadalajara International Airport. But don't expect discounted prices at these locations because you are paying for the convenient location.

Visit the web site of JOHN RAMOS to review his unique and colorful Mexico art work.

Some of the larger shopping venues in town include the following:



    Located along Avenida Chapultepec between Avenida Mexico and Ninos Heroes.
    West of the historic downtown area.
    Variety shops frequented by tourists because of it's organized layout.
    Similar to Mexico City's Zona Rosa but smaller.
    Restaurants scattered about to let your credit card cool off!



    Located on Avenida Vallarta near the Camino Real Hotel.
    Large three story mall with shops, restaurants and a theater.
    One of the newest shopping malls in Guadalajara.
    A good place to go on a rainy day!



    Located on Avenida Lopez Mateos Sur southwest of the old downtown area.
    A huge shopping mall with dozens of shops and restaurants.
    The outdoor garden area is a good place to take a break and count your money.
    Various eating establishments throughout.



    Located at Calzada Independencia and Avenida Javier Mina.
    A huge shopping arena featuring almost everything you can think of.
    Shopping has never been this much fun!
    Even a fun place to browse for non-shoppers (men).



    Located along Avenida Javier Mina.
    Famous for it's Sunday morning flea market and good prices.
    You like to haggle on prices? This is the place!
    A wide variety of items...many of them very inexpensive.



    Located along Avenida Hidalgo in downtown.
    Casual shopping in a pleasant walking atmosphere.
    Weekend entertainment makes this a fun afternoon romp.
    Also good for people watching!




Getting to and getting around Guadalajara is easy. There are several airlines that fly into the town, all of them are listed below. And once you arrive in the city of Mariachis, don't think that renting a car is necessary. Although you may not need a car for your entire stay, you may want to take a one day excursion down to the coast to discover a deserted beach or a sleepy fishing village!

Guadalajara is set up perfectly for those who don't want to drive. Taxis are the perfect way to take those short hops to dinner and shopping. And even a reasonable way to connect between different parts of town for those half-day excursions!

For extensive information on driving an RV into Mexico visit the web site of ON THE ROAD IN MEXICO.

If you think you may need the services of an emergency Air Evacuation company while visiting Mexico visit the web site of SKY MED INTERNATIONAL or call them at (800) 475-9633 for additional information.

Click here for a MAP OF GUADALAJARA.







Guadalajara International Airport is officially named Miguel Hidalgo International and is located on the main highway about 10 miles southeast of downtown off of Mexico Highway 23. The airport offers flights to and from other parts of Mexico, the U.S. and other international cities. Many flights to Guadalajara go through Mexico City, but an increasing number of airlines are now providing direct flights.

Getting from the airport to the tourist areas is easy. "Collectivos" operated by Mexico's transportation arm provide shared van rides from the airport on a regular basis. They are stationed in front of the airport and depart as soon as they become full! In addition to the collectivos, private taxis are also available for a higher fee.



City buses pick up and drop off locals and tourists at most points throughout town and old downtown. Most rides around town are less than 50 cents U.S. The local bus station is located about 6 miles east of downtown Guadalajara.

Buses head to the Mexican coastline and service is also available to Aguacalientes and Mexico City. There is a small central bus station in downtown for local transportation, but the main terminal east of town is used for long range travel. It is clean and well designed.



Car rentals are available in Guadalajara, but not a necessity. They can add depth and convenience to a long vacation for those Mexico adventurers looking to head down the coast, or to Mexico City. If you do decide to rent a car from the git-go, rental cars are available at the airport. Your rates may be cheaper if you reserve your rental car in advance, before you arrive in Guadalajara. If you decide to go car-less for most of your trip, but want to rent a car for an one day excursion, most hotels have car rentals available in-house. Keep in mind that this is a big and busy city and plan your driving accordingly.

Parking in downtown Guadalajara can be tough. Like Manhattan Island, New York or Manhattan Beach, California, parking spaces are a rare! If you get one you can write it off to some of that good karma coming back at you! - Drivers wanted!





Renting a car while you are in Guadalajara is usually not necessary. Taxis are very available in and around town. If you are planing to travel from one place in town to another, plan on spending around $10.OO U.S. for a taxi. Longer trips might run $20 U.S. depending upon the distance from your pick up point. Tips are appreciated, and most taxi drivers are very nice.

Be sure to confirm a price for your destination before you get in the cab. It's pretty tough to negotiate prices while you are speeding along the highway in a foreign land with a stranger at the wheel!



If you want to see more of the Guadalajara area without all of the planning, consider taking a tour. There are several tours in town which showcase museums, galleries and popular local sights. Checking with the front desk of your hotel is a good place to start.










    Telephone 011-52 (33) 647-5854.
    #2686 Avenida Ninos Heroes, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, 44520.
    Residential and commercial real estate services.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-2103.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-2104.
    Post Office Box 417, Ajijie, Jalisco, Mexico, 45920.
    New developments and existing homes in Chapala and Guadalajara.



    Telephone 011-52 (312) 2-7956.
    FAX 011-52 (312) 1-8022.
    Specializing in helping buyers and sellers in Guadalajara real estate.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 615-7975.
    #1788 Pedro Moreno, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Residential and commercial real estate.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 826-4444.
    #255 Avenida Chapultepec, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Real estates sales and leases.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 123-1125.
    #3217 Avenida Mexico, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Serving the Guadalajara and Lake Chapala market.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 121-0021.
    Avenida Lopez Mateos, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Helping buyers and sellers in Guadalajara.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 615-1552.
    Avenida Mexico, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Guadalajara and Lake Chapala residential and commercial real estate.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 616-5120.
    #207-1 Avenida Nelson, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Spanish and English spoken.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 678-0333.
    #5200-10 Puerto de Hierro Boulevard, Zapopan, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Specializing in areas outside of Guadalajara.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 616-6151.
    #109 Aurelio Gallardo, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Real estate sales and rentals.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 616-5191.
    #163-704 Avenida Union, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Serving Guadalajara for many years.






    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1917.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-2211.
    Donato Guerra #16, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico, 45920.
    Purveyors of fine real estate in the Chapala area.
    Enjoy their web site for more information!



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-0300.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-4004.
    Carretera Ote, Chapala-Jocotepec #60-A, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico, 45920.
    Second homes, vacation homes, lake front and lake view.
    Review their web site for more information!



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1766.
    #159-A Carretera Chapala, Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Second homes and vacation rentals.
    Go Above the Crowd with Re/Max!



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1174.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-1933.
    #52 Carretera Oriente, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Sales, rentals and commercial real estate.
    Many years of experience in Lake Chapala.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1174.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-1188.
    #24 Carretera Ajijic, Lake Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Sales and leases for 38 years.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1944.
    Fax 011-52 (33) 766-1272.
    Calle Colon #12, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico, 45920.
    Located in the heart of Ajijic.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-2077.
    #4 Avenida Morelos, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Vacation properties and second homes.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-2612.
    Careterra Chapala Km. 53, Lake Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Many years experience in Chapala real estate.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1238.
    #200 Avenida Ocampo, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Lake front and lake view properties.



    Telephone 011-52 (33) 766-1174.
    #24 Careterra, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico.
    Sales and rentals of homes and condos.




Lake Chapala is a beautiful city that has attracted thousands of Mexicans and Gringos in search of a more relaxing environment for many years. Located less than an hour south of Guadalajara this huge lake is host to a very large second-home and ex-patriot population for many folks from the United States.

Lake Chapala itself is over 50 miles long and 18 miles wide, but many of the residents live in the hillsides surrounding the lake, and in the nearby towns of Ajijic and Jocotepec.

The main activity in town centers along Avenida Madero. Restaurants and shops provide a relaxing environment, and the town pier is just down the street. Ferry rides to historic Isla Mezcala depart daily.

Because of the growing population in the surrounding area the water level of Chapala Lake has dropped significantly over the last 25 years. Although it is still the largest natural lake in Mexico it is currently only half of it's original size. Efforts by locals and the government may soon stem the tide of the declining waters.

For more information on "what's up" in Lake Chapala drop by CHAPALA.COM. And to check out what is really happening drop by the Chapala Web MESSAGE BOARD.

For more information on buying a home in Lake Chapala check out the Guadalajara real estate section above.

Soon you will be able to learn Spanish in the new SE HABLA LA PAZ office in Guadalajara.




For the Guadalajara traveler with ants in their pants there are several side trips out of town that can add great depth to a vacation. Guadalajara's central location provides some delicious options.

For starters the nearby destination of Lake Chapala is an easy one day excursion. Located on the shores of Mexico's biggest lake, Chapala offers a slower pace in a beautiful environment combining mountains and man. The nearby towns of Ajijic and Jocotepec round off this enjoyable side trip. For more information drop by our Local Interest section.

For those who want a taste of the Mexican Riviera both Puerto Vallarta and Ixtapa ~ Zihuatanejo are both a half day's drive from Guadalajara. While both areas have grown significantly over the past 10 years they each offer a special taste of Mexico. For more information check out the PUERTO VALLARTA and IXTAPA sections of Mexico Expo.

Looking for the 'real' taste of Mexico? Strap on your seatbelt, grab a bag of chips and head northwest of Guadalajara on Highway 15. In less than an hour you will be in the middle of Tequila country! The town of Tequila has a long history of providing the world with some of the best spirits to be found on the planet. Area distilleries provide guided tours and free samples. That volcano you see south of town is called Volcan de Tequila. Be sure you have had plenty of tequila in you if she looks like she is going to blow! For more information on tequila check out the MISCELLANEOUS section in Mexico Expo.




Guadalajara is a city of commerce and tourism, so you can expect to find all of the communication options you would need in a large city. Now more than ever it is easy to keep in touch with the family, friends and business associates back home while enjoying Guadalajara.

If you want to avoid the sur-charge that most hotels tack on to use the telephone in your room the public phones located throughout town are easy to use. To make them work you need to buy a phone card, which can usually be obtained for about $5. Bringing you ATT calling card number and access code from home is a good way to minimize your costs. There are also quite a few long distance or "Large Distancia" shops located throughout town. Expect to pay about $1.65 U.S. per minute, and try to have smaller denomination bills available. Both U.S. dollars and Mexican pesos are accepted for payment.

Internet Cafes are popping up throughout Guadalajara so accessing your e-mail or the Web has gotten very easy in the last year or two. Rates are getting better each year as competition increases, but you can expect to pay approximately $3 U.S. for 30 minutes of Internet time.

Fax machines are also plentiful in Guadalajara, both in the hotels and in most of the Larga Distancia shops.

Guadalajara has not escaped wrath of the cell phone, and they seem to be everywhere. Unless you are in town on business, do yourself a favor and leave your cell phone at home at the bottom of your pool.

For the new dialing instructions from the United States to Mexico, as well as the new Mexico area codes you can call AT&T at (800) 869-1707 or drop by their Mexico dialing instructions web site at MEXICO DIALING INFO.

For more information on keeping in touch while in Mexico drop by the COMMUNICATION section of Mexico Expo.




Even people who don't like to shop are in awe of the gigantic Liberty Market. Located off of Calzada Independencia at Avenida Javier Mina, hundreds of merchants display a dazzling array of goods under one expansive roof. Local and imported goods, food, jewelry, clothing, computers to quail's all here! If you are looking for a venue to practice your negotiating skills this is the place to do it.

All stalls accept pesos and U.S. dollars. Some vendors will accept credit cards, others are just not set up for it. When paying with U.S. dollars try to use smaller denomination bills. Bartering is encouraged!

Although the weather in Guadalajara is almost always nice, in the rare case that you are stuck in town during a brief summer storm, this is the perfect place to burn a few hours! Grab a bite to eat at one of the many food stands and then burn it off walking the isles. Shopping has not been this much fun since Sam Walton opened his first Wal-Mart.





We will only be spending two days in Guadalajara and want to experience as much of the genuine Guadalajara as possible. Is there a good hotel close to the popular downtown attractions? ~ Beth



You are on the right path if you only have two days to see it all. If you stay in a hotel in the center of town you will be able to spend more time walking to the sights you want to see and less time driving around town. The closest hotels to the central district are the Hotel de Mendoza and the Hotel El Francis. Just two blocks back are the Calinda Roma, the Holiday Inn and the Best Western Plaza Genova. From all of these hotels you can walk to many points of interest including Plaza de la Liberacion, Plaza Tapatia, the Regional Museum of Guadalajara and Liberty Market. ~ Carlos Fiesta



My husband and I are considering retiring in the Lake Chapala area. We understand that there are quite a few Americans who now live in the area, and that living costs are less than the U.S. A whole new way of life sounds a bit intimidating, but we think our retirement income would go much farther there. What do you think? ~ Margie



From the sound of your letter it sounds like you have not yet been to Lake Chapala. I think your first step would be to visit the area and see if it looks inviting to you. Most of the U.S. residents who have moved to the Chapala area have done so in stages. An initial visit or two, followed by renting a place for a few months is a good way to get a feel for the area. If, after spending considerable time there, you are still strongly interested in living there, looking at leasing or buying a long term residence would be the next move. Remember, once you make the big move you are not in Kansas any more. ~ Carlos Fiesta



I have been invited to tag along on a trip to Guadalajara that includes a day of golf at the Guadalajara Country Club. I'm an avid golfer but I am not sure I want to go all that way for a course I have not heard that much about. Is it a good course? ~ Robert



Start packing! The Guadalajara Country Club is a great golf course and host to the annual Senior's Invitational. It is an extremely hard course to get into (does Pebble Beach ring a bell?) and most good golfers really love it. The course is located just northwest of downtown Guadalajara and an easy drive (pardon the pun) from most hotels. ~ Carlos Fiesta



I have heard some pretty bad stories about Mexico City and I am just wondering if Guadalajara is any safer. Should I be careful when taking a cab? ~ David



These days diligence is important almost anywhere you travel. Yes Mexico City has gotten a bad rap because of several unfortunate confrontations with tourists and uncertified taxi drivers, but the likelihood of getting in trouble there is still small. Guadalajara is a huge city and it attracts people from southern Mexico and Central America who are looking for opportunity. For a very small number of those immigrants that opportunity might be you. Just like any large city in the world crime exists in Guadalajara. But traveling smart and using common sense will go a long way towards making your trip a safe one. When renting taxis be sure to pick them up at certified taxi stands and always set the price to your destination before you get in the cab. ~ Carlos Fiesta



I would like to go shopping while in Guadalajara, but I don't want to waste too much of my vacation time running around town looking for different items. Where is the best place to shop in Guadalajara? ~ Leslie



For classy shops with upper end inventory head down to Zona Rosa. This is a nice, well kept avenue of various types of shops and boutiques, and also offers several restaurants for you to have lunch, let your credit cards cool off and catch your breath. For a less formal venue and a diverse inventory of items for sale you can't go wrong with several hours walking the isles at Liberty Market. This is also a great way to burn calories... the place is huge! ~ Carlos Fiesta



We would like to take in as much of Guadalajara as possible. Is renting a car necessary or can we just focus on walking around the old downtown district? ~ Amy



Guadalajara is a h-u-g-e place and if you really want to see as much of it as possible you should probably take a tour. These tours are very well organized and efficient, set up to let you see as much as possible in a reasonable amount of time. For further information contact the folks at Panoramex Tours at 011-52 (381) 0-5005. Yes they speak and understand English! ~ Carlos Fiesta




A combination of high elevation (over 5,000 feet above sea level) and a tropical latitude combine to give Guadalajara an almost spring-like climate year around. Although small variations in weather to come into play, there is really no bad weather season here.

The higher altitude also helps keep the humidity down in Guadalajara. From June through October summer storms can provide brief afternoon showers, but they usually break up by late afternoon. In the winter evenings can get cool but daytime temperatures are in the 75 to 80 degree range. Summer days often get into the 90's.

Check out today's GUADALAJARA WEATHER.

For the bigger picture check out the SATELLITE VIEW of the weather in Mexico.

For more information on weather in Mexico drop by the WEATHER section of Mexico Expo.




For further information about Guadalajara contact the Jalisco State Tourism Office. They are located in the old downtown area at #102 Plaza Tapatia, behind the Degollado Theater.

This Visitors Center offers maps and plenty of brochures for hotels, restaurants and many attractions in town. They are open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and on Saturdays and Sundays from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. They can also be reached by telephone at 011-52 (33) 658-2222.