The 3 Best Things to Do in Guadalajara

Welcome to Guadalajara, the capital of the Mexican state of Jalisco and one of the most vibrant and culturally rich cities in Mexico. Known for its mariachi music, tequila, and stunning colonial architecture, Guadalajara offers visitors a host of exciting attractions and things to do. With so much to see and experience, planning your trip can be overwhelming. But fear not, we’ve compiled a list of the best attractions and things to do to help you make the most of your time in this captivating city. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or simply looking to soak up the atmosphere, Guadalajara has something for everyone. So grab your sombrero and join us on a tour of the top sights and activities that should definitely be on your itinerary.

The 3 Best Things to Do in Guadalajara

  1. Tequila Tour by Mickey Marentes Private Tour
  2. Guadalajara and Tlaquepaque City Tour
  3. Guachimontones Pyramids Tours from Guadalajara

The 3 Best Things to Do in Guadalajara

1. Tequila Tour by Mickey Marentes Private Tour

If you’re planning a trip to Guadalajara, don’t miss the chance to discover the fascinating world of tequila on a private tour. With the Tequila Tour by Mickey Marentes, you’ll have the opportunity to visit two family-owned tequila distilleries and learn about the traditional process of making tequila. As this is a private tour, you’ll have the flexibility to customize the schedule according to your preferences and explore each distillery at your own pace. During the tour, you’ll also enjoy a delicious lunch, alcohol tastings, and bottled water. The tour includes convenient pickup and drop-off, so you won’t have to worry about driving. Pickup is available at hotels, Airbnbs, and residences in Guadalajara and the Metropolitan Area (Zapopan & Tlaquepaque), Tequila, Chapala, and Ajijic. The tour starts at 9:00 AM, and gratuities are included. Don’t miss the chance to discover the rich cultural heritage of tequila on a private tour in Guadalajara.

2. Guadalajara and Tlaquepaque City Tour

Take a unique cultural tour of two artisan towns, Tonala and Tlaquepaque, with a local guide. Explore their colonial buildings, public squares, and markets to get a glimpse into pre-Hispanic times. Get a chance to meet local artisans and learn pottery techniques by visiting workshops, art galleries, and museums. An authentic and personal experience awaits you with this private tour that includes a tasting of local cuisine at a traditional “cantina.” The tour includes private transportation, bottled water, alcoholic beverages, and lunch. Pickup is available from your accommodation at 10:00 AM. Don’t miss the chance to visit Tonala’s craft market, the largest in Guadalajara, on this unique tour.

3. Guachimontones Pyramids Tours from Guadalajara

Experience an immersive exploration of the Guachimontones Pyramids with this tour from Guadalajara. Discover the ancient archeological site with an expert bilingual guide, who will lead you through the mysteries of this remarkable piece of history. The tour also includes a drive through the town of Teuchitlan, giving you a glimpse into the region’s rich cultural heritage. You will be provided with food and drinks during the tour. Please note that personal expenses and tips are not included in the package. Pickup for the tour starts at 10:00 AM, and you should wait in the lobby at least 10 minutes before the scheduled time. The drop off point will be Historic Center Expo Zone & Minerva. Visitors should wear comfortable clothing and shoes. This experience is not wheelchair accessible, although it is stroller friendly and infants must be accompanied by an adult. If you need to cancel your tour, you must do so at least 24 hours before the start of the visit to receive a full refund.

The most frequently asked questions by tourists about Guadalajara

Guadalajara is the capital city of the state of Jalisco in Mexico. It is a vibrant city with a rich culture, history, and attractions that draw tourists from around the world. If you’re planning a trip to Guadalajara, you might find yourself asking some common questions. Here are the most frequently asked questions by tourists about Guadalajara, along with their answers.

1. What is the best time of year to visit Guadalajara?

Guadalajara has a temperate climate, with warm temperatures year-round. However, the best time to visit is during the dry season, which runs from November to April. During this time, you can enjoy the city’s outdoor attractions without worrying about rain. The months of May to October are the rainy season in Guadalajara.

2. What are the must-see attractions in Guadalajara?

Guadalajara has a range of attractions for tourists, from cultural museums to parks and zoos. Here are some of the must-see attractions in Guadalajara:

  • Guadalajara Cathedral
  • Hospicio Cabañas Cultural Institute
  • Teatro Degollado
  • Guadalajara Zoo
  • Mercado San Juan de Dios

3. What is the currency used in Guadalajara?

The currency used in Guadalajara is the Mexican peso. You can easily exchange currency at banks or exchange houses throughout the city. Many businesses also accept US dollars, but it’s best to have pesos on hand for convenience.

4. What is the transportation system like in Guadalajara?

Guadalajara has an extensive public transportation system, including buses and a metro. The metro runs along a single line and is the fastest way to get around the city, while buses offer more flexibility in terms of routes. Taxis are also readily available, but it’s important to negotiate the fare before you get in.

5. What are some traditional foods to try in Guadalajara?

Guadalajara is known for its delicious and unique cuisine. Some traditional foods to try in Guadalajara include:

  • Birria: a spicy stew made with goat or beef
  • Torta ahogada: a sandwich with pork and tomato sauce
  • Tortas de camaron: a shrimp patty made with corn masa
  • Pozole: a hominy and pork soup
  • Tequila: a spirit made from the blue agave plant

6. Is it safe to visit Guadalajara?

Guadalajara is generally a safe city for tourists. However, like any big city, there are some safety concerns to be aware of. It’s best to avoid walking alone late at night and to be cautious in areas that are crowded or have a high crime rate. The US State Department provides up-to-date travel advisories for Mexico, which can be a useful resource for staying informed about safety concerns.

7. What is the nightlife like in Guadalajara?

Guadalajara has a vibrant nightlife scene, with a range of bars and nightclubs to suit all tastes. Some popular nightlife areas in Guadalajara include the Chapultepec neighborhood and the Zona Rosa. It’s important to be aware of your surroundings and avoid excessive drinking to stay safe while enjoying the nightlife in Guadalajara.

8. What traditional festivals take place in Guadalajara?

Guadalajara is known for its lively festivals and celebrations throughout the year. Some of the traditional festivals to look out for in Guadalajara include:

  • Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos) in November
  • International Mariachi Festival in August
  • Guadalajara Book Fair in November
  • Charrería National Championship in September
  • International Film Festival of Guadalajara in March

9. What should I bring back as souvenirs from Guadalajara?

Guadalajara offers a range of unique souvenirs to bring back home from your trip. Some popular souvenir options include:

  • Tequila
  • Handicrafts such as pottery and woven textiles
  • Traditional clothing such as ponchos and charro suits
  • Candies and sweets
  • Trinkets and figurines made from the region’s famous ceramic, Tonala earthenware

How to Spend Your Time as a Tourist in Guadalajara

Guadalajara, located in western Mexico, is the capital of the state of Jalisco. It is known for its vibrant culture, lively music, and delicious food. As a tourist, it can be overwhelming to decide what to do and see in this beautiful city. This guide will assist you in planning an itinerary that will allow you to experience the best of Guadalajara.

1. Visit the Historic Center

The Historic Center of Guadalajara is the heart of the city, where you can experience the colonial architecture, taste traditional Mexican food, and browse local markets. The main attractions are:

1.1. Cathedral of Guadalajara

The Cathedral of Guadalajara is a magnificent structure that stands out in the Historic Center. It took more than 120 years to build and has a mixture of different styles. You can admire the neo-gothic towers, the baroque altars, and the neoclassical dome. Entrance is free, and you can also take guided tours.

1.2. Plaza de Armas

Plaza de Armas is the main square of the city, located in front of the cathedral. Here, you can watch local musicians and dancers, buy souvenirs, and enjoy a cup of coffee in one of the cafes. The square is surrounded by government buildings, such as the Palacio de Gobierno and the Teatro Degollado.

1.3. Mercado San Juan de Dios

Mercado San Juan de Dios is the largest market in Latin America, where you can find everything from clothing to electronics to food. It’s a popular destination among locals and tourists alike, so it can be crowded. Make sure to try some street food, such as tacos, tortas, and tamales.

2. Explore the Art Scene

Guadalajara is a cultural hub of Mexico, where you can find numerous museums, galleries, and street art. Here are some of the best places to experience the art scene:

2.1. Instituto Cultural Cabañas

Instituto Cultural Cabañas is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most important cultural centers in Mexico. It was originally built in the 18th century as a hospital and later transformed into an art museum. You can admire the murals of Jose Clemente Orozco, a famous Mexican painter, and attend exhibitions and concerts.

2.2. Museo de las Artes de la Universidad de Guadalajara

Museo de las Artes de la Universidad de Guadalajara is a contemporary art museum that showcases local and international artists. It has a collection of more than 2,000 artworks, including painting, sculpture, and video. Admission is free.

2.3. Street Art

Guadalajara is a canvas for street artists, who express their ideas and messages through murals, graffiti, and installations. You can find street art in neighborhoods such as Chapultepec, Americana, and Providencia. Take a walking tour or explore on your own, but always be respectful of the artwork and the artists.

3. Taste the Food and Drink

Mexican cuisine is famous for its flavors and spices, and Guadalajara is no exception. You can find traditional dishes such as pozole, birria, and tequila. Here are some places to enjoy the food and drink:

3.1. Tequila Tour

Tequila is a town located near Guadalajara that produces tequila, the national drink of Mexico. You can take a tour of the distilleries, learn about the history and process of making tequila, and taste different types of tequila. Some popular distilleries are Jose Cuervo, Sauza, and Patrón.

3.2. Birrieria Las 9 Esquinas

Birrieria Las 9 Esquinas is a restaurant that specializes in birria, a spicy stew made with goat meat. It’s a local favorite, and you can order it with tortillas, onions, and cilantro. The restaurant also serves other Mexican dishes such as tacos and quesadillas.

3.3. Tlaquepaque

Tlaquepaque is a neighborhood located south of Guadalajara that is known for its crafts and gastronomy. You can stroll along the pedestrian streets, admire the traditional architecture, and visit the artisan shops. The restaurants serve typical dishes such as pozole, sopes, and margaritas.

4. Attend a Festival or Event

Guadalajara has a calendar full of festivals and events throughout the year, which showcase the cultural diversity of the city. Here are some of the most popular ones:

4.1. International Mariachi Festival

International Mariachi Festival is a week-long celebration of the traditional Mexican music, involving concerts, parades, and competitions. It takes place in September and attracts thousands of visitors from around the world.

4.2. Festival Cultural de Mayo

Festival Cultural de Mayo is a cultural festival that takes place in May and features a variety of artistic disciplines, such as music, theater, dance, and literature. The events are held in different venues throughout the city, and many of them are free.

4.3. Day of the Dead

Day of the Dead is a Mexican holiday that honors the deceased loved ones. It takes place in November and involves building altars, decorating graves, and making offerings. Guadalajara has a parade that goes through the Historic Center, and many restaurants and bars serve special dishes and drinks.


Guadalajara has something to offer for every type of tourist, from the history buff to the foodie to the art lover. This guide has given you a starting point for planning your trip, but there’s always more to discover. Make sure to be respectful of the local culture and customs, and have a great time in Guadalajara.

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The 3 Best Things to Do in Guadalajara