Dolores Hidalgo is a small colonial town of 60,000 inhabitants in the state of Guanajuato in Central Mexico. The full name of this town is Dolores Hidalgo, Cuna de la Independencia Nacional (Cradle of the National Independence).
The importance of this town lies in the fact that this was the starting point of the fight for Mexican independence from the Spanish empire in 1810, led by priest Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla. The quiet atmosphere in this town makes it really charming and the absence of tourist crowds could make it a highlight in your trip.
To reach Dolores Hidalgo you should be able to get a bus from Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende or León all of them are around one hour away. Taking a bus from Querétaro is also an option. From Mexico City you need to take a bus to any of the before mentioned cities and then to Dolores. The bus station for 1 Grupo Flecha Amarilla which includes Primera Plus and Coordinados is on Calle Hidalgo 26, north of the Rio Dolores. The other station for 2 Pegasso & Autovias is at Calle Yucatan 13e, on the corner of Calle Yucatan and Chiapas, one block north and one block west from Flecha Amarilla along Calle Tobasco/Chiapas.
The town is really small, everything is within walking distance.
- 1 Independence Statue (Monumento a los Insurgentes) (by the town's entrance).
- 2 Plaza Principal. The main square, where a statue of Hidalgo overlooks the parish church.
- 3 Parish Church of our Lady of Sorrows (Parroquia Nuestra Señora de Dolores), Plaza Principal S/N, ☏ . Daily 08:00-20:00.
- 4 Museo de La Independencia Antigua Cárcel (Museum of National Independence), Zacatecas, 6 (next to the main square), ☏ . M-Sa 09:00-17:00, Su 09:00-15:00. M$15 (pesos) (adults), M$7.50 (students/teachers/seniors), free (children under 12), free on Sundays; M$10 (camera permit).
- 5 Casa de Visitas, Plaza Principal 25 (off of the main square). An 18th-century mansion, now is a guest house for VIPs. Ask the guard to let you in and see inside.
- 6 Museo Casa de Hidalgo, Calle Morelos 1 (Hidalgo and Morelos streets), ☏ . T-Sa 10:00-17:45, Su 09:00-16:45. This was the place where priest Hidalgo lived. Shortly after the rebellion started, the Spanish arrived to Dolores and burned the original house. Most of the original furniture were lost but a they did a very well done replica of this national hero home. Interesting is a plaque in one of the outside walls dedicated by Emperor Maximilian of Habsburg during the French occupation. M$49 (adults), free (students/teachers/seniors/children under 13); free on Sundays.
Every night there's a re-creation of the famous cry for freedom at the main square with light and sound effects.
Dolores is famous for its Talavera Ceramic (pottery) items such as tiles, vases, pots, etc. Experts say is one of the best places to buy this kind of goods.
Next to the parish, there are several stalls selling small cacti, local liquors such as honey liquor or cacti liquor, and other local crafts. Buying from them will make their day.
Dolores is famous for its exotic ice cream flavors. Try them at the main square, there are two vendors, offering strange flavors such as Mole (chili and chocolate sauce), Beer, Strawberries and Cream, Avocado, etc. Each ice cream or "Nieve" in Spanish is around M$15.
- 1 Café La Taberna, Plaza Principal 18, 2nd floor, ☏ . Daily 12:00-24:00.
- El Caporal Plaza Principal 5
- 2 Carnitas Vicente, Avenida Norte 65, ☏ . Daily 08:00-16:00. Inexpensive and casual.
- 3 El Carruaje Restaurante, Guanajuato 5, ☏ . Daily 08:00-22:00. Has live music in the evening.
- 4 Restaurant Bar Plaza, Plaza Principal 17B, ☏ . Daily 08:00-22:00.
- 1 Hotel CasaMia, San Luis Potosí 9, ☏ .
- 2 Hotel Hidalgo, Calle Hidalgo 15, ☏ , toll-free: , fax: .
- 3 Haciendas Las Trancas. Centuries-old ex-hacienda. Ten suites with beautiful views of the Sierra Madres, each with Internet, satellite TV, propane fireplace, terrace, private bath. Additional beds and linens can sleep up to 30 people total. Wi-Fi throughout the porches and gardens. The hacienda is huge (approximately 40 rooms). Includes all meals, use of horses, heated pool/Jacuzzi, 17 piece Cybex Gym. Spa services available.
Dolores is a safe place by Mexican standards. Overall, people are nice and willing to help if you need directions.