Last week I went on a day trip to the city of Zacatecas. My primary destination was the silver mine that had been made into a museum, La Mina del Eden. The bus trip from Aguascalientes took about an hour and a half. The taxi from the bus station to the mine took another 15 minutes.
Admission is 100 pesos, but half price for seniors and children. To my surprise, I was told that a tour in English was available. I decided to opt for that one. I have taken several tours in Mexico in Spanish. While I do grasp most of the content, sometimes details are missed.
Clad in hard hats, we boarded the train that would take us deep into the mine.
We disembarked in the darkened mine. To my delight, I was the only one on the English tour so I had the tour guide all to myself. Ruben is Mexican but had lived in Illinois for a while and his English was amazing. He was very knowledgeable and I thoroughly enjoyed my private tour. We stopped several times as he explained the history and the logistics of the mine. We were several meters below the surface ourselves, and we were able to view the water running through several meters below us as well. This photo shows just one of the many displays along the way.
We continued our tour and it was interesting to see the gold and the quartz embedded in the rocks overhead.
My guide further explained that there is still untapped silver in the mine. However the city of Zacatecas has grown and is now encroaching on the mine, so official mining has stopped and the mine is strictly now a museum only. My guide also pointed out that there is actually a night club in the mine that is open in the evenings and nights on weekends.
After I left the mine I decided to walk a little, no easy feat in this city. The streets are extremely steep. I found myself at the teleferico, the cable car that goes up to the top of the mountain. But that day my fear of heights triumphed and I wound up taking an Uber to Centro instead.
I checked out the Basilica and some stores close by. That was when I noticed the tour bus.
The tour itself was in Spanish. The bus navigated the steep, narrow streets providing me with an amazing view from the upper deck of the city below. Our guide pointed out the various historical buildings, parks and statues along the way. It was most informative and interesting.
After the tour, I came across this man sitting on a bench.
I realize that Zacatecas has numerous museums and other attractions, but it was getting late and time to return to the bus station to board a bus back to Aguascalientes.
While I can envision another day trip in the future, the silver mine was definitely the highlight for me on my first visit to Zacatecas.
It was a somewhat cool and cloudy day when I took an Uber out to Plaza de las Tres Centurias to explore a train museum. I’d never been to a train museum before that had focused on railroad travel and the history behind it in Mexico, and this museum did not disappoint. What surprises me is the number of locals I’ve talked to who have never come to this museum before. Then again many have not gone to some of the other museums in this city either.
This is a train museum. However one of the highlights has absolutely nothing to do with trains. The fuentes danzarinas (dancing fountains) was a delightful display of water combined with music. It is presented hourly throughout the day and lasts about 15 minutes. I actually watched it twice!
The museum itself features displays in separate buildings. Admission is a mere 5 pesos and is free to seniors with an Inapam card. Each building had interesting displays, vintage items and photographs.
Outside there are a number of brightly painted railway cars along the tracks. There is even a miniature train that features a ride around the park area.
There is also a garden area with a few statues of railroad pioneers.
There is also a small ice cream shop as well as a quaint cafe featuring a variety of coffees and snacks.
I highly recommend a visit to this unique museum in Aguascalientes.
It’s been a busy week. I haven’t had much time for blogging. I’ve been visiting museums and admiring churches. Of course there was an unexpected side trip to Walmart…………
On Saturday I went to the Plaza Tecnologia in search of a new battery for my phone. Oh oh! I couldn’t find one. A building filled with booths and no-one had the one I needed.
On Sunday I was delighted to find a Christian church right around the corner from where I’m staying. A handful of the congregants also spoke English although the service was in Spanish. My Spanish is really getting a workout this winter.
On Monday my destination was Walmart. I was on a mission to buy a new phone. And I did. And I am still playing with it and trying to adapt to all the new features. It’s only been two years since I bought my last phone. Quite amazing how there have been so many changes.
On Tuesday I dropped my laundry off at the lavenderia and discovered a lovely cafe close to where I’m staying. I then went to Centro to explore the Casa de la Cultura. I must admit that the art there was not really to my liking, but it was definitely different.
On Wednesday I decided it was time for a road trip. I headed to Leon, Guadajuato. I had been there briefly eight years ago en route to Irapuato. Leon was the closest airport. I spent part of the day in the historic Centro area visiting the Cathedral and other churches. I then browsed through the Zona de Piel. Leon is known for its leather and I was happy to find a new fanny pack as my old one was disintegrating.
On Thursday I was back to visiting museums and churches. The museum was dedicated to a famous artist here in Mexico, Jose Guadalupe Posada. The museum is located adjacent to the Templo del Encino, a beautiful church.
Today I enjoyed a wonderful lunch at Loncheria Fer, owned by my friend Fernando. It was leisurely and three hours passed by quickly. Fernando has been a wealth of information about Aguascalientes and his cousin Raul manages the hotel where I’m staying.
Throw in phone calls to my family and friends in Canada and the USA, sorting through photos and learning to use my new phone, the days have flown. I’ve also had some interesting conversations with locals at the park and other places. I’m quite surprised at how many have been to Canada and even knew where Winnipeg is.
I’m staying in tonight and resting up for tomorrow. The planned agenda is two museums and a church. That will put me at the halfway mark for visiting museums in this city.
I can’t help it. I’m a museum addict. At least I have become one since living in Mexico. Guadalajara is still in the lead although Aguascalientes is definitely providing competition for a city of its size.
I’ve been here just over a week and have already visited three museums. My earlier post on Museo Nacional de las Muertes speaks for itself. In this post I will focus on the other two museums I’ve visited.
On Thursday I ventured down a side street close to the bull ring and was completely enchanted with Museo del Juguete Tradicional Mexicano Aguascalientes. There are over a thousand exhibits here featuring traditional toys from all over Mexico. These toys are made from a range of materials including wood, rags, sugar, newspaper, mud and even chewing gum. Admission is a mere 15 pesos, a small price to pay for a delightful venture back into childhood. Of course, coming from Canada, these toys are amazingly different from those I grew up with.
On Friday I went to the Regional Museo de Historia Aguascalientes. The building itself is an old structure with a lovely fountain at the entrance. There are several rooms with displays depicting the geological and cultural history of the area. Brush up on your Spanish as there are no English translations of the descriptive notes. Admission is 55 pesos, but it is free to seniors, students and teachers.