Once a sleepy Mexican backwater, the world has woken up to San Miguel de Allende. It has brilliantly-coloured buildings in every shade under the sun. Its markets are brimming with authentic handicrafts and street food. And from its modern boutique hotels, you can stroll down cobbled boulevards or venture out to mystical ancient ruins. No wonder it’s seen as one of Mexico’s most quietly beautiful towns.

Vibrant architecture and a cosmopolitan spirit in this rainbow-hued Mexican town

Things to do


There’s something about the light in San Miguel de Allende that draws creatives. This vibrant town is a magnet for writers and artists – including David Leonardo, who created the vivid murals inside La Biblioteca. More murals lie inside Escuela de Bellas Artes, a monastery turned ever-changing exhibition space. 


Thanks in part to its listing as a UNESCO World Heritage site, San Miguel’s colonial centre remains beautifully preserved. Its most well-known landmark, Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel, is a towering series of neo-Gothic turrets in the town’s signature shade of burnt pink. After this, enjoy an up-close look at the 18th-century Oratorio de San Felipe Neri before getting a city-wide view from El Mirador. Be sure to travel a little further out of town to Cañada de la Virgen, an incredible complex of mystical ancient pyramids.  


It’s little wonder that culture-rich San Miguel has a full events calendar. From Day of the Dead in November to June’s ‘Day of the Crazies’, its festivals mix spirituality with revelry, parades with all-night parties. November is the pitch-perfect time for musical types to visit, when the annual Jazz and Blues Festival strikes up. And families will love the Storytelling Festival in October – with open mic events for aspiring tellers of tales.

Swap pink-hues for San Miguel’s green spaces and wander around Parque Benito Juárez and Jardín Botánico El Charco del Ingenio.

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