This magical town in Queretaro is the cradle of delicious cheeses and excellent wines. We invite you to experience it with this complete guide.
1. Where is Tequisquiapan located?
Tequisquiapan, or simply Tequis, is a small city in the state of Querétaro that is the head of the municipality of the same name, which is located in the Queretaro shoal. The state capital, Santiago de Querétaro, is located 63 km. west of the Magic Town and the second city of Queretaro, San Juan del Río, is even closer, just 20 km. Other cities close to Tequis are Toluca, which is 166 km away .; Pachuca (194 km.), Guanajuato (209 km.), León (233 km.) And Morelia (250 km.). Mexico City is located 187 km. along federal highway 57D in the direction of Querétaro.
2. How did the town arise?
The town was founded in 1551 by Nicolás de San Luis Montañez and a handful of Spaniards, accompanied by a group of indigenous Chichimecas and Otomi. The original name was Santa María de la Asunción y las Aguas Calientes, although in 1656 the Nahua name of Tequisquiapan was imposed, which means “place of water and saltpeter.” During the Mexican Revolution, Carranza designated the town as the center of the country. In 2012, the Mexican government incorporated Tequis into the Pueblos Mágicos system.
3. How is the weather in the Magic Town?
The climate of Tequis is cool and dry throughout the year, favored by the altitude of almost 1,900 meters above sea level and the low rainfall. The warmest season runs from April to June when the thermometer moves on average between 20 and 21 ° C. In October the temperature begins to drop from 17 ° C, reaching around 14 ° C in December and January. Occasionally there are extreme temperature peaks that approach 5 ° C in winter and 30 ° C in summer. It only rains 514 mm a year, concentrated between June and September. The rains between November and March are strange.
4. What is there to see and do in Tequisquiapan?
Tequis is a land of cheeses and wines, with its route, its fair, and its museum dedicated to these gastronomic delights. In the city there are places such as the Plaza Hidalgo, the Parroquia Santa María de la Asunción, the Parque la Pila and the Living Museum. Other sites worth visiting are the Mexico I Love Museum and the Monument to the Geographical Center. Tequisquiapan is an ideal place for fun due to its variety of water parks and spas; also its temazcales are of the highest quality. In the vicinity of Tequis you have to visit the Opalo Mines and the communities of San Juan del Río and Cadereyta. Balloon and microlight flights offer a unique and enchanting perspective of the Magic Town.
5. How is Plaza Miguel Hidalgo?
It is the main square of the city and its vital center, located between Calles Independencia and Morelos. It is dominated by a beautiful kiosk installed at the beginning of the 20th century and in its spaces, the locals gather to talk and tourists take a break in their program of activities. In its surroundings, there is the temple of Santa María de la Asunción and several buildings with the typical and welcoming portals that are an architectural feature of the center of Tequisquiapan, with cafes, restaurants, and handicraft shops.
6. What is the Parish of Santa María de la Asunción like?
The parish church of Tequisquiapan was completed at the beginning of the 20th century and consecrated to Santa María de la Asunción under the dedication of the Virgen de los Dolores. The Virgin of the Assumption is venerated in Tequisquiapan since the town was called Santa María de la Asunción y las Aguas Calientes. The exterior of the temple is an attractive neoclassical construction in shades of pink and white. Inside the chapels dedicated to San Martín de Torres and the Sacred Heart of Jesus are distinguished. The temple is located in front of the Plaza Miguel Hidalgo.
7. What characterizes the Route of Cheese and Wine of Tequis?
Tequisquiapan is part of the Cheese and Wine Route of the Mexican shoal. In the surroundings of the Magic Town there are wine-growing houses with a long tradition, which grow their wines with the best procedures to ensure excellent quality. These include Finca Sala Vivé, La Redonda, Viñedos Azteca and Viñedos Los Rosales. To exquisitely pair the wines, in Tequis they make superior quality artisan cheeses with the best Queretaro milk. Among the best-known names are Quesería Néole, Bocanegra, Alfalfa Flower Cheeses, and VAI Cheeses.
8. Who can I do a tour of the Cheese and Wine Route with?
In Tequisquiapan there are some operators that take you through the best wineries and cheese companies in the bajío Queretaro. Among these is Viajes y Enoturismo, with an office at Calle Juárez 5 in Tequisquiapan. They offer tours of 4, 5, 6, and 7 hours, which contemplate, depending on the option you select, the Bocanegra Cheese Cava, the VAI Cheese Farm, the Néole Quesera, and the Sala Vivé, La Redonda and Bodegas de Cote wineries. Guided tours include tastings of the best wines, accompanied by cheeses and artisan bread and dressings. Some tours include the Magic Town of Bernal.
9. How close is Bernal?
The Magic Town of Queretaro Peña de Bernal is only 35 km away. from Tequisquiapan. Bernal is famous for its rock, the third largest monolith in the world, after Rio’s Sugar Loaf and the Rock of Gibraltar. This 10 million-year-old and 288-meter-high monolith is one of the great Mexican temples of the faithful of the sport of climbing, equally appreciated by top international climbers. The rock is also the scene of the festival of the spring equinox, a mystical and religious celebration. In Bernal, you have to visit the church of San Sebastián, El Castillo, the Mask Museum, and the candy stores of the town.
10. When is the National Cheese and Wine Fair?
The best opportunity to get to know the Querétaro Cheese and Wine Route are during the last week of May and the first of June when the National Cheese and Wine Fair is held in Tequisquiapan. In a totally informal and relaxed atmosphere, you can enjoy tastings, tastings, walks, and shows, with the wines and cheeses of the Queretaro shoal as the star protagonists. The fair includes musical concerts, gastronomic shows, product exhibitions, learning workshops, and other events, which take place mainly in La Pila Park. It is an excellent occasion for you to expand your knowledge about wines since the most renowned wine producers in the country and also international houses participate.
11. What can I see in the Cheese and Wine Museum?
This museum, founded on the initiative of Quesos VAI and Cavas Freixenet, is located at the back of the parish temple, in the historic center of Tequisquiapan. The museum shows the winemaking process through history, from the pressing of the grape by ancient methods to the packaging of the drink, also exhibiting different implements used over time in the harvest and processing. You will have the same learning with cheese, from the milking of the cattle and the transport of the milk to the cheese factory, to the elaboration of different dairy delicacies, fresh and matured, by traditional methods.
12. What is exhibited at the Museo México me Encanta?
Another must-see on a visit to Tequisquiapan is this curious museum. The picturesque space located on Calle 5 de Mayo 11 in the center of the Pueblo Mágico represents different scenes of daily life and traditions of Mexico with nice small-scale figures and miniatures. In this exhibition that began modestly as a Christmas nativity scene, you will be able to admire everything from the stamp of a quesadilla vendor to a Mexican burial. The costumes of the figures are made with great taste, taking care of the smallest details.
13. What is the Living Museum of Tequisquiapan?
A group of Tequisquiapan women concerned about the environment and alarmed by the contamination of the San Juan, the river that runs through the city, organized to form what they called the Living Museum of Tequisquiapan. Huge and lush juniper trees grow on the banks of the river that provide cozy shade and the area has little by little been reclaimed for the recreation of locals and visitors. It is a good place to walk and cycle along picturesque paths that are a haven of peace.
14. What’s in La Pila Park?
In the 16th century, Spanish colonizers built a water supply system in Tequisquiapan that they collected from nearby springs. La Pila Grande was the main point of arrival of water to the town that was beginning to rise and gives its name to the park located very close to the center of Tequisquiapan. In the place, there are streams, small lakes, and sculptures by Emiliano Zapata and Fray Junípero Serra, as well as a roundabout to the Niños Héroes. It is a place that the inhabitants of Tequis go to walk, hike, and rest. It is the scene of public shows and other events.
15. What is the Monument to the Geographical Center?
Almost all of us are proud to be the center of something. What is the geographic center of Mexico? A difficult question to answer because depending on the criteria taken to make the calculation, there may be several results. The city of Aguascalientes presumed for a time to be the national center and there was a plaque, now defunct, that declared it. Guanajuatenses affirm that the very center of the country is theirs, specifically the Cerro del Cubilete. Tequisquiapan also claims the honor for historical reasons. In 1916, Venustiano Carranza decreed that Tequisquiapan was the center of the country and an allusive monument was built that is now a tourist attraction. It is located on Calle Niños Héroes, two blocks from the main square.
16. Can I visit the Opal Mines?
In the community of La Trinidad, 10 minutes from Tequisquiapan, there are some opal mines that are privately owned but can be visited on a guided tour. Opal is a semi-precious stone highly valued in jewelry for its beauty and ability to irradiate. The La Trinidad mines are open-cast and the Mexican variety, called fire opal, is extracted from them. On the tour, you can see the rock formations that contain the opal and you can take an unpolished piece with you. The tour ends in the finishing workshop, where you can purchase a carved and polished piece.
17. Who can I fly with in a balloon?
Many places are not enough to know them at ground level; There are places where the perspective of the heights that a balloon trip gives allows you to appreciate beauties that are very difficult to appreciate on land. The company Vuela en Globo offers tours of the Tequisquiapan airspace with variable rates, depending on whether you want to go on the open trip or if you prefer a private flight. Packages include toast, breakfast, flight insurance, and flight certificate. Tours depart regularly at dawn when the weather conditions are the best. The trip lasts between 45 minutes and an hour and do not forget your camera or your mobile to take spectacular photos and videos of the vineyards and the Peña de Bernal, among other attractions.
18. With whom do I fly an ultralight?
If the balloon ride through the airs of Tequisquiapan didn’t give you enough adrenaline, maybe you should do something a little more intense and take a flight in an ultralight plane. The Flying and Living company flies both with balloons and ultralights, with certified pilots with extensive experience in the activity and full knowledge of the routes. The flights depart from the modern Isaac Castro Sehade airfield in Tequisquiapan, flying over the city, the Peña de Bernal, the Opalo Mines, the Zimapan Dam, and the Sierra Gorda, among other places.
19. What are the best water parks?
Termas del Rey Water Park is the most complete of its kind in Tequisquiapan. It has several slides, including the highest, called Torre del Rey and another called Tornado for its turns; pools, paddles and children’s pools, lake, picnic areas with palapas and grills, and volleyball court. They accept that people take their own food and drinks and their meat for the barbecue, and they also have a point of sale for snacks and fast food. It is located at km. 10 of the highway to Ezequiel Montes. Another option for water fun in Tequisquiapan is Aquatic Fantasy, also on the road to Ezequiel Montes.
20. What are the best temazcales?
Temazcales are part of the pre-Hispanic medicinal culture of Mexico as a method to purify the body, freeing it from bad humors through the relaxing and healing effects of steam. Tequisquiapan has magnificent temazcales, such as Tonatiu Iquzayampa, located at Amado Nervo 7; Tres Marías, on Calle Las Margaritas 42; and Casa Gayatri TX, in Circunvalación N ° 8, Colonia Santa Fe. They offer facial cleansing with mud and snail drool, peels with walnut shell and beeswax, Mayan massages, chololaterapia, chakra alignment and aromatherapy, among other services. . A feast for the body and the spirit.
21. What are the attractions of San Juan del Río?
20 km. from Tequisquiapan is San Juan del Río, the second-largest city in Queretaro, which has a set of civil and religious buildings of enormous beauty and cultural importance. On a tour of San Juan del Río, you must stop at the Plaza de la Independencia, the Plaza de los Fundadores, the Puente de la Historia, the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the Temple of the Lord of Sacromonte and the Temple and former convent from Santo Domingo. Another attraction of San Juan del Río is its old Haciendas that have been established since the 17th century near the Camino Real de Tierra Adentro.
22. What can I see in Cadereyta?
Another place close to Tequisquiapan is the small town of Cadereyta, head of the municipality of Cadereyta de Montes. This town is the entrance to the Sierra Gorda de Querétaro and its list of essential attractions to visit must include the botanical gardens, the Cactaceae Museum, the estates, and the religious buildings of the historic center. Cadereyta is a town of cozy colonial mansions, wine fields, large dams, and also has caverns for spelunking enthusiasts and archaeological sites nearby.
23. How is the craftsmanship of Tequis?
Tequisquiapan is the Queretaro town with the greatest artisan tradition, developed since the area was inhabited mainly by Otomi and Chichimecas. Apart from opal, the artisans of the Pueblo Mágico are experts in basketry, working with the stick of willow and the root of sabino; They are also skilled at embroidering fabrics and the Otomi people make beautiful rag dolls and necklaces with different colored threads. You can buy your Tequisquiapan souvenir at the Handicraft Market in the center of town, at the Artisan Tourist Market located near the town’s entrance, and in the shops on the streets near the Asunción church.
24. What is gastronomy like?
Cow, sheep, and goat milk cheeses are great protagonists of the culinary art of Tequis. Every home in the town, no matter how modest it may be, has its own pewter pot to prepare the typical dishes of Queretaro cuisine, such as lamb barbecue, turkey mole, and pork carnitas. In Tequisquiapan they eat at their discretion gorditas crushed corn, huitlacoche quesadillas, beef chicharrón and Queretaro enchiladas. To drink they have their wines, the cured pulque of prickly pear, and the seasonal fruit atoles. For sweetening, they prefer crystallized fruits, charamuscas, and Bernal custards.
25. What are the main festivals?
The National Cheese and Wine Fair starts in the last week of May. On June 24, the anniversary of Tequisquiapan is celebrated, which begins with a religious service in the Barrio de la Magdalena, where the founding mass of the town took place. After mass, there is music, fireworks, and other shows. The patron saint festivities are on August 15, the day of the Virgin of the Assumption, a celebration characterized by an intense program of pre-Hispanic dances. On September 8, the popular Barrio de la Magdalena commemorates its eponymous saint. On December 16 the festivities of the posadas begin, with processions through the decorated streets.
26. Where can I stay?
Tequis has a comfortable hotel offer built in harmony with the colonial and wine-growing environment of the area. Hotel Boutique La Granja, on the Madero Corner of Calle Morelos 12, is a central, beautiful and first-class lodging. La Casona, on the old road to Sauz 55, is a clean and friendly accommodation. The Hotel Rio Tequisquiapan, located in the Niños Héroes 33 walkway, has magnificent green areas and is a comfortable and quiet accommodation. Other good alternatives to stay in Tequisquiapan are Hotel La Plaza de Tequisquiapan, Hotel Maridelfi, Best Western Tequisquiapan and Hotel Villa Florencia.
27. What are the best places to eat?
Kpuchinos Restaurant Bar is praised for the variety of its breakfasts and for the attention of its staff. Uva y Tomate offers renewed Mexican food and vegetarian dishes, and they have a rich starter of ripe plantains with mole sauce on the menu. Bashir serves some excellent pizzas. Rincón Austríaco is a cafeteria-restaurant whose owner and pastry chef is of that nationality, preparing an exquisite strudel. On the way to Bremen, La Puerta and Pozolería Kauil are also good options. If you fancy a gourmet treat, we recommend El Maravillas and in sushi there is Godzilla.
Ready to enjoy the wines and cheeses of Tequis and its other charming attractions? Happy stay in the Magic Town of Queretaro!