Morelia Mexico Guide and Advisor

Morelia Mexico Travel Guide will provide you with info and advise to select this colonial city as a destination in your next Mexico vacation.

Morelia Mexico Travel Guide - About

Morelia is a beautiful historic city capital of the state of Michoacan. It is located in the central part of the country, 300km (187 miles) West of Mexico City.

Morelia is famous for its Historic Center declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO for its history and architecture. The City Center has typical colonial-style buildings with narrow streets and a typical town atmosphere.

Around Morelia there are eco-tours destinations such as the monarch butterfly sanctuary and the Jose Maria Morelos National Park.

The state of Michoacan is famous for still having influences from the Purepechas and Tarascan indigenous cultures in its food, crafts, and traditions.

Just like many other cities inside Mexico, Morelia is famous for crafts made by artisans in the area. Among the most famous things are traditional pottery, brass plates, and paintings made on wood.

Morelia has a warm and semi-humid climate with rain during the summer months. The average temperature for the year is 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit). During the winter months the nights tend to be cool so make sure you come prepared with adequate clothing.

Michoacan colonial church * Michoacan colonial church

Things to Do in Morelia Mexico

There are many things to do in Morelia Mexico. Below we have gathered the top activities and places to visit:

  • Visiting the Historic Center is a must do. Here is the list of the most important colonial buildings in and around:

    • The Cathedral (La Catedral). A baroque style building with neoclassical figures constructed between 1660 and 1774. The most famous image it hosts is "Señor de la Sacristia".
    • The Clavijero Palace (Palacio Clavijero). Built in the 17th century is an important architectural symbol of the city.
    • Aqueduct (El Acueducto). With 253 arches was constructed to bring potable water in the 18th century.
    • Church and Convent of San Francisco (Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco). Franciscans ordered its construction in 1531. Today is the Michoacan Crafts House
    • Old House of Don Manuel Garcia Obeso. Built in the 18th century, and famous for being the place where initial conversations took place to plot Mexico's independence from Spain.
  • Arts and Crafts shopping at the "Mercado de Dulces y Artesanias" near the historic center. In this market you will find ceramic figures and tableware, basketwork, painted boxes, bronze plates, iron products, and typical clothing; as well as traditional candies and other delicacies such as "morelianas" and "charamuscas".

  • Visit the Biosphere Reserve for the Monarch Butterfly located 150 km (93 miles) East of Morelia off highway 15 near the towns of Angangueo and El Rosario. In this area, you can spend some time hiking and enjoying the abundant vegetation. The best time to see the Monarchs is between November and March.

  • Visit one of the national parks: Parque Nacional Jose Maria Morelos located 26km (15 miles) East of Morelia on highway 15. You will find wonderful scenery with a forest ideal for horseback riding. The other option is Parque Nacional Bosencheve located 166 km (102 mi) East of Morelia on highway 15, near the border of the state of Michoacan with the state of Mexico. Here you will find two lagoons: Verde and Seca.

  • Visit the town of Patzcuaro, its lake, and Janitzio island. This is a picturesque town filled with culture. Worth mentioning for its rich tradition, is the celebration of the day of all saints on November 1st, and the day of the death on November 2nd.

  • The Park and Zoo Benito Juarez (Parque Zoologico Benito Juarez) exhibiting a great variety of bird species and with great activities for kids: a train, a bat exhibit, a snake exhibit, a petting area and pony and llama rides.

  • Around Morelia, you may want to visit Uruapan another colonial town. You can also move north to the state of Guanajuato and Queretaro and visit their wonderful colonial towns: Guanajuato city, Queretaro City, San Miguel de Allende, Dolores Hidalgo. Your other option is to head to the coast and visit the town of Lazaro Cardenas or the more popular beach resorts in Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo.

Morelia Dinning and Nightlife

Morelia Mexico is a medium size city, so there will choices where to spend the evening. In Morelia you will feel a local atmosphere when going out. Downtown has a relaxed atmosphere, while a more active atmosphere with bars and nightclubs is found in the Souteast part of the city.

There are great restaurants where to eat including some Trascan style. The typical Tarascan food usually includes cotija cheese and chilies. Make sure you try some of these typical food recommendations :

  • "Corundas and uchepos" (traditional tamales from this region),
  • "Trascan soup" A tortilla soup made with beans, chilies spices, cheese and fried tortilla strips... delicious!
  • "Enchiladas placeras"
  • "Chongos zamoranos" for dessert made out of cheese and syrup.

How to Get and Move Around in Morelia Mexico!

Morelia receives regularly scheduled flights from major cities in Mexico, from Houston, TX, and Los Angeles, CA.

To move around in the city and nearby places we recommend to take taxis or rent a car. Taxis are relatively inexpensive compared to the US, Canada or Europe. However, because they are not metered, agree on a price before boarding. Renting a car is a good idea because you will most likely want to move around and go to other towns and places around. Just keep in mind that you may struggle since signaling is not perfect in Mexico. The best way to get around is to look for signals and get directions from somebody.

Getting to Morelia from Mexico city by car is only a little over 3 hours. From Guadalajara is approximately the same distance from the opposite direction. Morelia is actually right in the middle between Mexico City and Guadalajara. Roads in Mexico have come a long way in the last decade, so you don't have to worry on security concerns, except in Mexico city where driving is more aggressive.

You can also reach Morelia by luxury bus from Mexico City, Guadalajara, Leon and other major cities and regular bus from basically anywhere.

Map Morelia Mexico

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Where to Stay

In Morelia you will find anything from five star hotels to budget accommodation, but it will not have the huge beach type resorts. The choice is yours depending on your budget and travel preferences.

Morelia Mexico is a beautiful colonial destination in Mexico thanks to its architecture, and indigenous traditions.

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