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Magical destinations

I had the honor of being invited to speak at the April 21 Open Circle session at the Lake Chapala Society. I chose the intriguing topic of Mexico’s Pueblos Mágicos because over time I realized that I had a complete misconception of the magic towns concept.

pg16aI thought of Pueblos Mágicos as quaint villages located off the beaten path. Jalisco magic towns Mazamitla and Tapalpa fit that profile.

I first realized that my vision might be out of kilter with reality on a 2018 trip to San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas. It is a place of many charms, but not somewhere I expected to find Oxxo stores every few blocks in the heart of town and modern city environs on its outer perimeters. The population is over 215,000 souls.

Lagos de Moreno, a Jalisco magic town destination of great historical value is not a village either, but a vibrant city of 172,403 inhabitants.

Take San Pedro Tlaquepaque, a Pueblo Mágico that is a hub for talented Jalisco artists and craftsmen. Population: 687,127 inhabitants!

So that led to the understanding that Mexico’s Secretaria de Turismo defines Pueblos Mágicos as singular populaces noted for unique identities in terms of local history, culture, traditions and festivities, craft production, natural attributes and gastronomy.

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