I remember my first ever flight to Mexico City around 15 years ago as if it was yesterday. At that time, I was mainly flying the routes to India, Japan, Thailand and the Philippines (yes, we did go nonstop then!). So it was always an adventure to be visiting a destination that was completely new to oneself.
Like everything in life, the things you do at an early stage clip on you forever. And so it was no surprise that my excursion back then to Taxco de Alarcón simmered constantly on my re-visit bucket list. So when I planned our tours for this rotation, Taxco ranked number one.
And it turned out to be just as beautiful as I reimagined it. Taxco belongs to the so-called Pueblo Magicos. A collection of Mexican cities and villages that offer visitors a magical experience in terms of natural beauty, cultural riches or historical importance.
And it is. The city entwines itself around the gorgeous Santa Prisca church up the rugged hills. Endless, steep and irregular streets are paved with dark stones and are neatly decorated with pictures, adorned lines and murals of white stone.
Beautiful town houses boast with colour, lovely crafted Spanish-style red-tiled roofs, romantic planted rooftop terraces and small wooden balconies. Walking through these narrow streets will take you on a journey back in time. Beautifully arranged pictures on hand painted tiles can be found on some of the houses, telling stories about Taxco from long gone moments.
Taxco is also called the Silver City. While its boost in economy over the centuries relied mostly on the mining, crafted silverware and jewelry, these days tourism has overtaken as major mainstay. The city´s reputation for high quality silverware remains untouched though! And you will see gorgeous works in the many galleries and silver stores throughout town.
Many Mexicans still come here to buy silver. Just don´t get fooled by those “friendly” men approaching you on Plaza Borda, the main city square. Tourist trap! They allure you by wanting to show you a panoramic viewpoint onto the church (which you can find very well yourself since it is just up the hill) and afterwards suggest to visit a befriended silver factory with “special prices”.
A friendly yet firm “No, gracias” will do though:)
How to get to/from Taxco
It is easy and highly comfortable to use one of the luxury buses departing the southern bus terminal called Taxqueña. You can reach the terminal with metro line 2. The metro station is only a little walk by foot away (you will have to cross a little street market). Check out this link for bus companies and times of departure for Taxco that gives you a real good overview. We used the Executive Service from Costa Line with sleeper seats, inseat entertainment and a goodie bag (snacks, headphones, drinks, etc). A great and comfortable way to enjoy the 3 hours ride. It´s a good idea to buy the return ticket straight away to have a secure seat for the way back. In my opinion, four to five hours in Taxco are generously calculated for sightseeing and lunch. You could also use Taxco for an overnight-stopover when enroute to Acapulco. There also is a nonstop bus connection from Taxco to the coast (around 3 hours travel time). The bus station in Taxco itself, the Central de Autobuses, lies centrally located and is easy to find when on your way back. Upon your arrival in Taxco, a tourist guide will be there to greet passengers, handing out maps of the city and answering questions that you may have.
Where to eat
Sightseeing makes hungry. You will be amazed how fair prices are for restaurant dining compared to what you would pay in Mexico City. There are particularly many restaurants around the main square Plaza Borda, but after walking up and down the hills we happened to end up at the lovely El Adobe Hosteria & Bar at the beautiful Plazuela San Juan. This authentically decorated, elevated hideaway was perfect for our lunch in the sun. Try to get a seat on one of the wooden balconies that reward either with a grand view over the romantic square underneath or into the narrow streets. The food is amazing (you MUST have the Guacamole!!!!!!) and together with the hearty service and the beautiful interiors a place that I will recall for longtime.