TRADITIONS OF JALISCO
Traditions and Festivities in JALISCO
Guadalajara is full of surprises. A cosmopolitan metropolis modern, but authentic and traditional at the same time. Many of things which are typically associated with Mexico have their origins in Jalisco. These include rodeos called charreadas, mariachis, and of course the tequila.
When the Spanish first settled in colonial Mexico had very large cattle-raising estates and soon the indigenous people known as “vaqueros” became excellent horsemen. Smaller landholders, known as rancheros or ranchers, were the first genuine “charros” and they are credited as the inventors of the charreada.
The charro’s elaborate costume and trappings reflect the merging of three distinct cultures that create the Mexican cowboy: Arabian, Spanish and indigenous American. Gentleman cowboys adorned their trousers with silver buttons down the heavily embroidered outside seams.
The short jackets and wide-brim, cone-shaped hats were trimmed in a likewise fashion. Today it has become a national sport a multi-colored spectacle. The charreadas consist of various events demostrating the skill of the rider in roping, handling of his horse, lassoing, or controlling a bull or a wild bronco.
For the women there are a precision equestrian even called the “scaramuza” with the participants dressed as “Adelitas” or women of the revolution.”
It has become synonymous of joy, music and party. The mariachi costume is famous worldwide. Traditional mariachi include guitars the “vihuela”, a high-pitched, round-backed guitar which provides rhythm, and a bass guitar called a “guitarrón”, violins and trumpets.
The mariachis use the charro outfit, usually in black with silver-colored buttons and chains running down their pants legs and up their vests, and with the unmistakable large Mariachi hat.
Although there is still much controversy, it seems that this type of musical ensembles were originated in north of the state, in the region of Los Altos de Jalisco. Most legends put the origin of the modern mariachi in the town of Cocula.
The word mariachi was thought to have derived from the French word “mariage” (marriage) dating from the French Intervention in Mexico in the 1860s.
The origin of the word is still in dispute but most of the prominent theories state that it has indigenous roots. In Guadalajara, you may see them playing in a restaurant or bar, or in the traditional Mariachi Plaza, and of course in the famous Parian in Tlaquepaque.
It is a distilled beverage made from blue agave plant, primarily in the area surrounding the Magic Town of Tequila. It is the most popular and representative beverage of Mexico in the world. The name tequila is a controlled denomination of origin, recognized internationally.
Tequila is usually bottled in one of five categories:
- Blanco (“white”) also known as “silver”, un-aged and bottled or stored immediately after distillation.
- Reposado (“rested”), aged a minimum of two months, but less than a year in oak barrels. It is softer than white, has a golden color and its flavor has a hint of oak.
- Añejo (“aged” or “vintage”), aged a minimum of one year, but less than three years in small white oak barrels. The color ranges from gold to dark amber strong, its taste is strongly impregnated with wood. If it has been aged for at least three years, can be considered Extra Añejo (“extra aged” or “ultra aged”).
The agave landscape and the ancient industrial facilities of Tequila have now been inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.
International Mariachi Fair
This annual festival captures the essence of the city. Performances take place on the streets of downtown and in various venues throughout the city. Mariachi bands from all over the world participate, coming from countries such as Venezuela, Cuba, Belgium, Chile, France, Canada and United States. The inaugural parade has become an icon of the city, spectators will be able to see all of the participating mariachi groups as well as floats, folkloric ballet troupes and representatives from a variety of both local and national Charro groups.
Romería de la Catedral Metropolitana a la Basílica de Zapopan (Pilgrimage from the Metropolitan Cathedral to the Basilica of Zapopan)
An annual procession honoring Our Lady of Zapopan celebrates the feast day of the Virgin of Zapopan on October 12th. Around dawn, pre-Columbian dancers, mendicants, priest and seminarians carries her small, dark figure, and begins the 5-hour ride from the Cathedral of Guadalajara to the Basilica of Zapopan along with thousands of pilgrims. The event ends with traditional dances and evening. During the months leading up to the feast day, the figure visits churches all over the city. You will likely see neighborhoods decorated with paper streamers and banners honoring the Virgin’s visit to the local church.
Anniversary of the City
February 14th, a number of festivities commemorate the founding of Guadalajara in 1542. Open-air concerts, live music and a marathon race are just some of the attractions on offer around the City Hall, Plaza Guadalajara, Plaza Fundadores, and the Rotonda de los Hombres Ilustres (Rotunda of Illustrious Men), and also the university campus.
May Cultural Festival
The event is driven by Jalisco’s Secretary of Culture and will take place at many locations in the state of Jalisco, including many in Guadalajara’s Degollado Theater. This festival includes cultural events such as concerts, exhibits, film screenings, dance performances and gastronomic tastings. Since 2003, this event exhibits the cultures of other countries, like Hungary, Poland, Austria, Spain, Mexico, Germany and Japan, among others.
A month-long event from the first Saturday in October to the first Sunday of November. Events take place in the Benito Juarez Auditorium and across different locations of Guadalajara, Zapopan, Tlaquepaque, Tonala and Tlajomulco. The festival features live music, plenty of dancing, endless food, exhibitions of art works, carnivals, markets with over 700 vendors, street entertainment and a number of free events. The event started with the traditional parade of floats along Avenida 16 de Septiembre.
Guadalajara International Book Fair
It is the most important publishing gathering in Ibero-America. It is also an amazing cultural festival. For nine days, people willingly stand in long lines to listen to their favorite authors, the city is filled with the music, arts, cinema and theatre from the featured country or region Guest of Honor. It takes place every year starting the last Saturday in November.
The Guadalajara International Book Fair was born in 1987 at the initiative of the University of Guadalajara. Each year the number of national and foreign participants grows substantially, public interest increases and activities multiply.
The main publishing houses of Mexico and other countries of the world participate in the fair. Until now, the United States, Spain, Canada and some Latin American countries have participated.
In addition to the book exhibition, activities such as conferences, seminars, book presentations and awards are held. A substantial part of the Fair concentrates on activities for book professionals. Commercial and university publishers, librarians, distributors, booksellers, educators, literary agents exchange information, carry out transactions and analyze the immediate future of the publishing, video and other related technologies industry.
Between 1992 and 1993, among editors, buyers, librarians, literary agents and writers, 640 professionals from Latin America participated. A contingent of 428 participated from the United States and Canada, 168 from Spain and 69 from other countries.
The Fair is constituted as a market for large commercial exchanges between those responsible for the cultural industry linked to books and other forms of communication.
An International Congress of Social Sciences is organized in which intellectuals participate with presentations on various topics. Among the activities offered at the Fair, there is also a place for athletes and “sports communicators”.
Within the Fair there is a space reserved for young people, where activities are developed that aim to respond to the needs and concerns of this sector of the population.
An important area of the Fair is dedicated to video. In the so-called VideoFilvideo, producers and filmmakers of this medium from all over Latin America are summoned. Two prizes are awarded at the Fair: the Fil of Literature in Romance Languages [previously called the Juan Rulfo Prize for Latin American and Caribbean Literature] and the Fernando Benítez Prize for Cultural Journalism.
In the 1994 edition, the Fair was inaugurated by Octavio Paz, who was honored for his career. Tribute was also paid to the publishing house Fondo de Cultura Económica (fce) for its 60 years of existence.
More Tourist Attractions in JALISCO
Located in the Bay of Banderas, in the state of Jalisco, the city of Puerto Vallarta is considered the second most important tourist destination in the Mexican Pacific, its spectacular mountain, beach and mangrove landscapes offer its visitors endless activities and tours. Puerto Vallarta was a traditional town before becoming an international tourist destination. The Spanish conquerors in 1525 named it Bahía de Banderas, based on the name of the culture that had settled here. After the Independence of Mexico it was renamed Las Peñas de Santa María Guadalupe and later shortened to Puerto Las Peñas during the years of the silver mining boom near San Sebastián and Mascota.… Leer Más
Tequila is a mixed drink from the 16th century as a result of the syncretism of two cultures: the Mexican and the Spanish. The Mexica never imagined the dimensions that they could reach with the discovery of agave honeys. After the arrival of the Spaniards to Mexico, a new post-fermentation process, distillation, was incorporated, thereby obtaining an innovative liquid: tequila.… Leer Más
On the Jalisco beach map, the coastal corridor known as Costalegre stands out, which includes four municipalities: Cabo Corrientes, Tomatlán, La Huerta and Cihuatlán, as well as the coastlines of six bays: Tenacatita, Bahía de Navidad, Costa Careyes , Costa Majahuas, Bahía de Chamela and Cabo Corrientes. All of these are considered among the best beaches in Jalisco. Tourism in Jalisco is one of the largest in Mexico, since this activity attracted almost 22 million national tourists and four million foreign tourists who visited the state during the last year.… Leer Más
The state of Jalisco has an amazing diverse and delicious cuisine, it is arguably one of the most traditional regions of Mexico. When Spanish settlers came to the region they introduced several ingredients to the Mexican diet. This fusion of cuisines and ingredients has made Mexican cuisine one of the most extensive and nuanced cuisines in the world. Classic dishes for the area include the Birria, a dish made of beef, goat, or lamb baked in a sauce with several spices, hot peppers, and chopped onion, prepare it is in a barbecue, in a hole in the ground; the pozole, stewlike soup of pork or chicken, hominy, mild chili peppers, and coriander leaves; the pipian, a sauce served as a condiment or marinade sauce for poultry, seafood, pork, and vegetable dishes; tostada de pata, fried tortilla with beef meat; enchiladas tapatías, a corn tortilla rolled around a filling and covered with a creamy poblano chile and tomato sauce; and the famous tortas ahogadas, a sandwich made of a special bread called “birote” (saltier than bread rolls) stuffed with pork covered or “drowned” in a spicy sauce prepared with tomatoes and hot peppers.… Leer Más
No visit to Guadalajara would be complete without taking time to shop. Whether you need a new pair of shoes, a luxury tailored suit, home décor pieces, or even Mexican spices, Guadalajara is sure to exceed your expectations. Shopping options in Guadalajara are extensive, whether you are looking for footwear, handicrafts, jewelry, sweets, souvenirs, in this guide we try to include options for all budgets.… Leer Más
Guadalajara is the capital of the State of Jalisco and the second largest city of México. It is known worldwide for its folklore, the renowned Mariachi, handcrafts, tequila and the national sport, charrería. Few cities can offer such a variety of interesting things to see and do, involving the visitors in a cultural, historical and legendary atmosphere. You can begin your enchantment by visiting the Historical Center and its magnificent buildings. The rich colonial legacy can be seen all over the city, including the Cathedral, featuring the symbol that has become emblematic of Guadalajara, its towers. Tlaquepaque and Tonalá are located out of the city limit, both towns are worldwide known for the quality and wide variety of its handcraft.… Leer Más
Guided Tours in GUADALAJARA
Flights & Hotels in GUADALAJARA
More Tourist Attractions in MEXICO
Folklore, gastronomy, literary culture, art and exhibitions, is what you will find in the capitals of the states of Mexico. To the north, colonial Mexico, Puebla, Guadalajara, Guanajuato, the Sonoran desert and the California peninsula. To the east Veracruz and the gulf. To the west Acapulco, Oaxaca and Tuxtla Gutiérrez. And to the south the Riviera Maya and the pyramids of Chichén-Itzá, Tulúm and Cobá in Yucatán, Palenque in Chiapas, the cenotes, and the Central American jungles.… Leer Más
Mexico is one of the best countries for Ecotourism as it has a great variety of flora and fauna, as well as a large number of refuges for extraordinary species. You can enjoy recreational activities of appreciation and knowledge of nature through contact with it, such as: stargazing, observation of natural attractions, wildlife and bird watching. Throughout México there are more than 176 protected natural areas, 5 of them considered by UNESCO as Natural Heritage of Humanity. Just for this and much more, we believe that Mexico is a Paradise for Ecotourism.… Leer Más
On the Beaches of Mexico you can immerse yourself in the intense blue ocean of the Pacific bays, sunbathe on the shore of the warm and transparent waves of the Caribbean Sea in Quintana Roo or even rest on the beautiful coasts of the Gulf of Mexico. Mexican beaches hide wonderful secrets for the traveler. By visiting them, in addition to enjoying the excellent climate and water activities, you can discover splendid archaeological sites and interesting colonial cities without traveling long distances.… Leer Más
A Magic Town is a place with symbols and legends, towns with history that in many cases have been the scene of transcendent events for our country, they are places that show the national identity in each of its corners, with a magic that emanates from its attractions ; visiting them is an opportunity to discover the charm of Mexico. The Magical Towns Program contributes to revalue a set of populations in the country that have always been in the collective imagination of the nation and that represent fresh and varied alternatives for national and foreign visitors. A town that through time and in the face of modernity, has conserved, valued and defended its historical, cultural and natural heritage; and manifests it in various expressions through its tangible and intangible heritage. A Magical Town is a town that has unique, symbolic attributes, authentic stories, transcendent events, everyday life, which means a great opportunity for tourist use, taking into account the motivations and needs of travelers.… Leer Más
The Archaeological Zones are the cultural past of every Mexican. You will be amazed at the ambient, nature and the environment that surrounds them. Climbing to the top or being around it will take us back in time to admire every detail. México is a country of culture and traditions, many of which we have inherited from the pre-Hispanic inhabitants of this vast territory, although it is true that there were more settlements in the central and southern part of the country, it is also possible to find some archaeological remains in the north.
… Leer Más
Mexico has an incredible diversity of landscapes, where the beauty of its beaches, internationally recognized, stands out. In its vast territory of coasts, there are beaches of unparalleled beauty, and colorful landscapes. A large network of first-class hotels and tourist services is available to visitors to these beaches. Mexico is also mystical places, dotted with archaeological testimonies inherited from its original inhabitants. Monuments made by the Mayas, Aztecs and Toltecs are located in magical landscapes, like lighthouses in an ocean of natural beauty. They offer visitors buildings that tell their history, and museums that collect their cultural heritage. And that keep alive ancestral traditions, in ceremonies and festivals, where you can enjoy cultural activities and entertainment.… Leer Más
The Gastronomy of Mexico has a great diversity of typical dishes, which is why it was recognized by UNESCO as Intangible Heritage of Humanity. The basic and representative ingredients of Mexican dishes are: corn, coriander, chili, beans, piloncillo, nopal and tomato. Mexican cuisine is also characterized by its sauces, which serve as an accompaniment to traditional dishes, prepared based on spices.… Leer Más
It is practically impossible to make a meticulous, and above all, accurate selection of the places to visit in Mexico. Each place that our country houses is unique and beautiful in its own way. Mexico, with its nearly 2 million km², has a large number of scenarios to offer, as well as endless activities to do. Do not lose your way and enter the places to visit in Mexico. In Mexico, apart from the beaches and its famous archaeological sites, there are many other really interesting sites and activities that you should know. In the surroundings of the main cities you will find places full of culture and tradition, where you can spend relaxing, interesting and fun vacations. On your trip through Mexico you cannot stop obtaining souvenirs, the crafts that are made here are of the highest quality and recognized worldwide. A shopping tour cannot be missed.… Leer Más