Ajijic, Lake Chapala Area Information
over 5000 feet in elevation, Ajijic is a tourist town and a place of
residence for both Mexican nationals and foreigners. Located
in the colorful state of Jalisco, Ajijic nestles in Mexico's Sierra
Madre Mountains on the northern shore of Lake Chapala. Only thirty
minutes from Guadalajara International Airport, Ajijic remains a
quaint, cobble-stoned village, a rustic reminder of an earlier time.
Bed and breakfast travelers will be delighted by the near perfect
climate, beautiful countryside and hospitable people.
The Lake Chapala
area has a year-round moderate climate. National
Geographic magazine rates it as one of the three best climates
in the world. Most of the year it is warm, dry and sunny
during the day, with cool nights great for sleeping. There is
a rainy season -- which is the favorite of many residents because
everything turns lush and green -- from June to October, but it
usually only rains in the late afternoon or evening and at night.
In the morning everything is fresh and clean, with blue skies
overhead once again.
has the normal services of the 21st century -- water treatment
plants, electricity, cellular phones, and the internet. But when you
first arrive here what you see is the mystery and charm of a 16th
century village. Restaurants buy mesquite firewood for their grills
from a local farmer, who delivers it on his donkey.
Cows and horses graze along the lake. And maiz is grown everywhere,
to be made into corn tortillas, a staple of the Mexican diet.
the village streets is the best way to see Ajijic. In the most
unexpected places you'll find things to surprise and delight you.
High walls in front of the houses are a constant reminder of the
Spanish influence of centuries past. You will find that the houses
are typical of old Mexico and there are simple little village homes
with colorful walls fronting the cobblestone streets as well as
magnificent colonial haciendas hidden behind high walls. The
exteriors give few clues to what lies inside the doorways and gates.
until the arrival of the Spanish, the region was occupied by nomadic Indian
tribes. There are many explanations, and meanings, for the names Chapala and
Ajijic, all of which are Indian names, probably derived from Nahuatl, the native
language of the area.
region, especially Ajijic, has become a destination for Americans
and Canadians, either escaping the high cost of living north of the
border, or freezing winters in Canada. These reasons, along with the
agreeable climate, have increased the area's population and it
appears this trend may continue, as the baby boomers reach
Days can be
filled with walking the quaint cobblestone streets, exploring art
galleries and shops, dining in fine restaurants or sitting on the
shores of the largest lake in Mexico.
Things To Do
There's plenty to do in Ajijic, thanks to the near perfect climate all year.
Tennis, Aerobics, Yoga
Festivals and Markets
|Open Circle -
photo safari/workshop taught in Lake Chapala/Ajijic area by
professional photographer to give amateurs and professionals a
chance to see & photograph the quaint villages surrounding the lake
(as well as Guadalajara and Tonala, etc.). The workshop
participants will stay at Estrellita's B& B. See www.mexploration.net for full details, prices & itineraries.
It is less than
an hour from the center of Guadalajara, Mexico's second largest city with its
big-city night life, state-of-the-art medical services, museums, 16th century
cathedrals, opera, ballet and a host of other attractions. Adjoining cities of
Tonala and Tlaquepaque are meccas for artisans and Mexican handicraft items. Day
tours to many points of interest including an easy drive of less than four hours
to Manzanillo are available.
activities include horseback riding, swimming, fishing, hiking, bird watching,
local fiestas and outdoor markets.
Ajijic has many
colorful streets lined with art galleries and shops for you to browse through.
Local artists, Bruno Mariscal and Efren Gonzalez.
There is a weekly
farmers' market (tianguis) on Wednesdays. .. fresh fruits and
vegetables, local crafts, jewelry, household goods, electronics ...