21 Things to Do in San Miguel de Allende: Your Ultimate Guide [DOWNLOAD]

If you’re looking for the ideal getaway spot or one of a kind experience, take it from me, The Abundant Traveler, a trip to San Miguel de Allende in Mexico will never disappoint. I have put together a list of the 21 best things to do in San Miguel de Allende. There is something for everyone in this comprehensive list. Not sure what to do in San Miguel de Allende? Let us help you pack your days and nights with the best 21 things to do in this city.

Watch my full video on all you need to know before you go to San Miguel de Allende!

i’m kim the abundant traveler and welcome to the channel if you’re a subscriber thank you so much for being here i really appreciate your support if you’re new here i put out laid back luxury travel videos and i am here to inspire and encourage you to buy that plane ticket go on that adventure and experience amazing travel destinations today i’m in one of my favorite cities in the whole world i’m in san miguel day in day in the middle of mexico in the state of guanajuato today i’m going to be sharing with you just a little bit about everything that you need to know before you come to san miguel for the first time so where is san miguel located it is located in the center of mexico in the state of guanajuato the

How to Get There easiest way to get here is through the airports of queretaro which is qro or leon it is not the easiest place to get to because once you get to those airports you have to take a shuttle to get here it’s about an hour and ten minutes from karetro and it is about an hour and a half from leon i have left a link in the description below for a great shuttle service that can get you from the airport here so if you decide not to fly into karetro or leon you can get to mexico city or other parts and you can take one of the luxury buses the ado bus or go to rome to rio and book one of the buses and it’s relatively inexpensive to get to san miguel i was coming from guadalajara and it was going to be about 40 to get here unfortunately it was gonna take about eight hours with all of the bus stops but a bus is a great way to tour around mexico as well as flying so once you’re in san miguel

How to Get Around the best way to get around in my opinion is to simply walk there is a trolley a tourist trolley which is 100 pesos to get you up to one of the big sites where you can see the entire city called el mirador which is the sort of like the looking point um you can take taxis if you want and my recommendation is if you’re going to take a taxi make sure to get the price before you get in the taxi so tell them where you want to go and then get the price before you jump in other than that i recommend walking and there are lots of cobblestone streets sidewalks are super narrow here my suggestion is is that you have closed toed shoes and shoes that fit very well on your feet you don’t need hiking shoes here in san miguel but you do need shoes that are quite sturdy with a good tread on the bottom every morning in san miguel everybody’s washing the sidewalk and when it’s raining in san miguel as well and those sidewalks are wet those stones are wet it is really really slick to walk around i love mexico so much i swear it was my skin in another life and my heart is mexican i don’t know what it is for having all this blonde hair but i am mexican and i want to share with you everything that i love about mexico and i have actually created a trip to san

My Trip to San Miguel miguel it’s a five day four night trip and it’s only going to be for 10 people it is in the laid-back luxury style it is going to be high-end but low-key it’s all about learning a little bit about mexico learning a little bit about the food we’re going to have a tequila and mezcal tasting we’re going to be doing a cooking class and we’re going to be staying in a wonderful hotel very close to the center in san miguel so if you would like to learn more about my trip go to the description below and click the link that says trip to san miguel it is going to be spectacular i promise you want to go pretty much all year round san miguel is a wonderful place to stay if you’re from the south like me it is extremely hot in july and august so i recommend coming to san miguel in the summer months now july and august here in san miguel are the rainy months but it’s only rain in the afternoons i would say the temperature has been about 90 degrees for maybe an hour and a half but in the morning i need a jacket and a pair of pants because it’s nice and cool and absolutely delicious here the other times to come are over the holidays the de los muertos which is november 1st is a big festival and a great time to come except the city is completely packed other times to come

San Miguel Culture are in the springtime when the flowers are coming up and it’s beautiful beautiful weather here most of the year because you’re at altitude in the mountains in the center of the country also there are some fantastic restaurants where you kind of like want to dress up in your boho chic and kind of just live it up a little bit so i would definitely bring a maybe a maxi dress or something that’s just a little bit nicer guys if you want you can bring some just a pair of khakis if you want to go to one of the nicer restaurants so let’s talk a little bit about the culture here in san miguel so you have 175 000 people it is very mexican but with the expats you have a very international vibe they have a symphony here they have a botanical gardens it is very artsy you find lots of shops with beautiful artisan materials and things that have been produced all over mexico it is um in my opinion a slower sort of coffee culture if you get up super early in the morning you basically have the city to yourself it’s not until around 10 o’clock that the restaurants get busy for breakfast and life is just a little bit later and a little bit slower here in san miguel and it just has the best just the best vibe in my opinion costs in san

Costs miguel are more expensive than they are in other parts of mexico i was just in guadalajara last week and costs were much less than they are here in san miguel restaurants are quite expensive i would expect to spend for a nice dinner with cocktails anywhere from 30 to 45 dollars which is actually quite expensive for mexico hotels i would say three star hotels are around 70 75 dollars a night you can also stay in four-star hotels expect to spend 150 to about 220 a night while i’m here i pay cash for almost everything and at the restaurants and at the shops if you’re going to use a credit card they usually charge you a fee a credit card fee as well so make sure to unlock your atm when you’re traveling here so you can go to the atm you can get out lots of cash so speaking of atms i suggest that you go to an atm that is inside a bank it is uh safer inside a bank they have cameras and you’re less likely to get your card number swiped if you are inside of the bank and you can tell which ones are the banks because that’s where the line is outside of people standing trying to get their cash because it is very driven by cash here in san miguel i touched a

Safety little bit on the prices of the hotels but a really cool thing to do while you’re here instead of staying in a hotel is renting a house where you get a chef or going to airbnb and renting a place that is on your own just make sure that it is uh gated or guarded and it is in a secure location you want to make sure that you are safe everywhere in the world there are pickpockets and bad things happen so you just want to make sure no matter where you staying here or anywhere else in the world that you keep yourself safe

What to do also when you’re staying here whether it’s a hotel or you’re staying in an airbnb or you’ve gotten a house with a chef you want to stay about i would say four days four days you can pretty much do everything you want to do from eating and the rooftop bars and all kinds of shopping and you can take a day trip or two maybe to the thermal spas or to go out to the winery you also want to be close because it is a walkable city and you want to be able to walk everywhere also after dark you want to make sure that you are not wandering off into some neighborhood where you’re not sure where you’re headed the heart of san miguel is the

Where to take photos jardine and la parochia which is the beautiful church that everybody sees the photos and then the garden in the middle if you go there super early in the morning not super early but even 8 8 30 you have the place yourself if you want to take pictures also if you like to take photos if you’ll go behind lapropia so go down the street to the right and zigzag right behind la parochia there is a great street where you can take amazing photos of the back side of the parochia the church and you can get the dome and then the spires and it is a perfect place for instagram the other place that i recommend going to get instagram photos is the street called chiquitos there’s rarely anybody on there and the houses are absolutely gorgeous so if you’re a new streamer or

Things to do you want some great photos those are a couple of places early morning la parochia behind la propia and chiquitos so when staying in san miguel i recommend staying four nights five days and make sure that you take the flights early into karetro or leon some of the flights arrive at 11am so you basically get the entire afternoon here four nights but you’re getting five full days some of the things that i recommend you go and see go to the la parochia i definitely recommend going to some of the rooftop bars like atrio or uh azotea or kinsei very very fantastic places to go and see everything that there is in the city i suggest that you go to the mercado des artesanias i think i said that correctly and do all of your shopping for your souvenirs and your friends you can buy pottery you can buy artwork you can buy pewter everything there’s a great shoe store here called san miguel shoes where they hand make shoes which a lot of my friends in austin have those shoes there’s a couple of great stores as well and if you would like to know those i have left them in the description below

Tipping when you’re out to dinner and you’re at those rooftop bars tipping is expected here in san miguel and in mexico in general it depends on where i am but i typically tip between 15 and twenty percent uh some people say twenty percent is too much some people say fifteen percent is too much it just depends on how you feel the services i also suggest that you tip in your hotel room they leave a lot of the times they leave little envelopes for the maids because it’s really nice to have that that mexican service where they’re looking after you so i do suggest that you leave a little bit of a tip for your maids as well in the hotels so that event covers everything that you need to know before you come to san miguel if you have a tip or trick or a suggestion restaurant or a tour make sure to leave it in the comments below because i’m always learning about every city i visit in mexico i am kim the abundant traveler and i’ll see you in san miguel either on my trip or on one of the rooftop bars where i love their cocktails so cheers everybody bye

1. Take a San Miguel de Allende Tour

One of my favorite things to do in San Miguel de Allende is to walk and explore this beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site city, so I highly recommend that one of your first things to do should be a proper San Miguel walking tour. Many group walking tours, like a walking tour or a Tacos & Tequila Walking Tour, will be two hours (or more) of nonstop walking, and they’ll likely take you to the main historical sites to see the beautiful architecture, as well as landmarks such as the Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel. This is the best way to get a general overview of the town when you first arrive.

For a deeper dive into the history of San Miguel de Allende, hire a local, private guide from Viator who can alter course depending on your smaller group’s wishes and can give you a more up-close-and-personal idea of daily life. Of course, the windy cobblestone streets are also perfect for self-guided San Miguel walking tours if you care to lazily stroll on your own time.

2. El Jardin Principal

When considering the best things to do in San Miguel de Allende, the bustling square of Jardin Principal is a solid choice. It is filled with restaurants and some of the best souvenirs to commemorate your trip. All festivals pass through or end up in Jardin Principal, such as the four-day-long Day of the Dead festival, as well as music and dance performances, wedding parades, and fireworks. Head over to the square for what I promise is the best people watching in town, grab a delicious fresh fruit juice from a street vendor, and take a break from the sunny weather and relax on a bench under shade from the square’s lush, bright green, highly manicured garden.

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3. Enjoy San Miguel Foods Through Food Tours & Restaurants

Undoubtedly one of my favorite things to do in San Miguel de Allende (or any city) is a San Miguel de Allende Food Tour. Whether you call yourself a certified food lover or not, a food tour is a must. This town is known for its cuisine, so meals will be highlights of your days. (Not to worry — you’ll definitely walk off the calories.) Check out these food tours for a variety of tour options that will take you to the best restaurants including a tacos and tequila tour, a traditional foods tour, or a tour of local Mexican chocolate indulgence. 

You can also find great spots to eat on your own. I admit that every day for me was a self-guided tour of the food here. I spent many meals popping into tiny hole-in-the-wall spots. Along the way I found the best breakfast at Muro Cafe, the best lunch at Los Milagros, and in general some of the best restaurants are off the beaten path.

If you plan to visit the Mercado Ignacio Ramimrez, you’ll have to reign in your salivary glands from the litany of smells emanating from the vendors rolling fresh tortillas and building tacos right in front of your very eyes. You might even want to stand in line at a crowded street cart, where you can treat yourself to everything from incredible local fare to fruit drinks to desserts.

Things to do in San Miguel de Allende

4. Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel

You can get lost down many rabbit holes trying to hit all the churches in San Miguel de Allende, but the main “Catedral de San Miguel de Allende” is not to be missed. Anchoring Jardin Principal, the awe-inspiring pink spires of Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel Cathedral soar into the sky with staggering beauty. It’s free to enter Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel, and you can spend five minutes or an hour — whatever fits your schedule.

Whether you’re there to look at Parroquia de San Miguel’s architecture, or you’re there to attend a mass service, visiting this church is one of the top things to do. It’s also the epi-center of the city, so you’ll likely pass by Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel multiple times during your stay.

5. Tour the San Miguel de Allende Markets

The San Miguel de Allende markets are known for their incredible food and artisan crafts. One of the best things to do in San Miguel de Allende is take a few hours and wander aimlessly around the San Miguel Ignacio Ramirez market to see all the vibrant and colorful fruits and vegetables, fresh meat and seafood, fresh juices, homemade tacos, and flowers under one enormous open-air roof. The San Miguel market is daily life in San Miguel at its best. And just behind the food at the market is Mercado de Artesanias, another great stop. This was my favorite shopping in the city — browsing the local crafts, jewelry, toys, clothing, and picking up gifts or souvenirs.

For art, head to Fabrica Aurora, an enormous warehouse with dozens of galleries representing all kinds of art and pottery and textiles. Surely you’ll be passing by Mixta, a beautiful store filled with local textiles, accessories, and sundries. Tao Studio Gallery is a mesmerizing display of textiles, art, and home decor. Go to Talula de la Lune for the coolest purses you’ll ever see or check out Finca Luna Serena to taste local olive oils. Finally, Armida Decoraciones, near Rosewood Hotel, offers unique local home decor ideas.

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6. San Miguel de Allende Shopping

Shopping is one of the best ways to spend your free time here. Art, clothing, pottery, textiles, jewelry, food, gifts, accessories — hand-painted, Mayan, local, unique. The best way to shop San Miguel de Allende is just wander the cobblestoned streets. Find the local shops and enjoy!

7. Take a San Miguel de Allende Cooking Class

Private cooking classes are one of the best ways for food lovers to delve into San Miguel de Allende’s food culture. This cooking class will guide you on a shopping excursion to the San Miguel market, and then, armed with the best ingredients, you’ll accompany the chef to create your special meal. If you love wine and food, then check out this Vineyard Tour in Independence Valley.

8. San Miguel Happy Hour

You’ll find the city filled with some of the best rooftop bars complete with music, people watching, and incredible views and ambience. That’s why this makes the list for one of many top things to do in San Miguel de Allende. You need to check out Quince just behind Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel for the best San Miguel happy hour drinks and cocktails and a beautiful view of the church lit up at night. You can also head over to the Luna Rooftop Tapas Bar at the Rosewood for one of the best sunset happy hours you’ve ever witnessed.

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9. Join a Wedding in San Miguel de Allende

Upwards of 800 couples have weddings in San Miguel de Allende every year, so that means you’ll see at least one or two of these big events during your time there. Wedding parades are a big thing to do for couples who travel to hold their wedding here to tie the knot– grab a cocktail and join in the revelry.

10. Check out the Spas in San Miguel de Allende

If your trip allows for some time at a spa, treat yourself to a massage or reflexology appointment to get relief from all the walking. Many of the large hotels and boutique hotels offer spa services. Check out the Sense Spa Rosewood Hotel or the Laja Spa at the Belmond Casa de Sierra Nevada hotel, which sits conveniently behind the Parroquia de San Miguel. If you are really adventurous, experience a traditional Temazcal instead of your everyday spa massage.

Don’t forget that some of the best spas in San Miguel de Allende can be found at smaller, hole-in-the-wall places like Schoenste Spa. I also advise asking your hotel concierge for their favorite local massage person.

11. Take Part in San Miguel de Allende Art

Checking out the San Miguel de Allende art world is one of the coolest things to do in San Miguel de Allende and one of the top reasons tourists flock to this amazing town. Fabrica la Aurora is the largest art gallery and it’s an easy walk from Jardin Principal. You can also paint a San Miguel scene with a local artist.  Make sure to check out Merry Calderoni’s gallery as she was the first artist at Fabrica Aurora.

12. Barrio de Guadalupe Street Art

The art scene in San Miguel de Allende stretches beyond the art galleries and on to the urban streets. Close to the Jardin Principal and Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel, Barrio de Guadalupe is a maze of cobblestoned streets that serve as an outdoor art gallery. The walls of homes and buildings are covered in huge, colorful murals depicting Mexican themes and the multicultural origins of the population. The best way to view this community-driven, ongoing, rotating art project is to take a self-guided tour.

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13. San Miguel Street Food

No food tour is complete without checking out the street vendor carts. These carts are known for some of the best tacos in San Miguel de Allende, as well as tamales, fruit, juices, and sweets. Many vendors congregate around Jardin Principal or the markets, but often some of the best restaurants in San Miguel de Allende can be found anywhere around town where you see a cart and a crowd. Make sure to try the elote with mayo, queso fresco and chile.  My favorite cart is the elote cart in the central jardin, corn on the cob with butter or Mayonaise, chile, queso fresco and lime.  Delicious!

14. Hike to Mirador San Miguel de Allende for the Best View

Another one of the many amazing things to do in San Miguel de Allende is to hike up to Mirador San Miguel for its spectacular view of the town. Brave the steep hike up, or take a cab, or the local trolley — however you can make it happen. Head up in the afternoon and grab a cocktail at one of the best bars in the city — Casa Nostra Rooftop Bar — to time it right as the sun sets over the Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel cathedral.

15. Peoplewatch in Juarez Park

The weather in San Miguel de Allende is always conducive to spending time in Juarez Park — an ideal break from all the walking. Grab a coffee and breakfast to go, and start your day strolling along winding paths laced with soaring trees, flowers, and birds. Join in the start of a wedding parade or pick up a souvenir from a local artisans or craftsman table. 

16. Toy Museum San Miguel de Allende

One very cool, unusual thing to do is to check out the Museo La Esquina del Juguete Popular Mexicano — the toy museum, which is filled with thousands of unique, handcrafted, vintage Mexican toys. Close to Jardin Principal, this is a fun place to spend some time channeling your inner child.

17. Mask Museum in San Miguel de Allende

Here’s another unusual thing to do  — also just a short walk from Jardin Principal, the Mask Museum in San Miguel de Allende holds more than 500 masks that have all been used in indigenous Mexican dance ceremonies, offering a unique look at Mexican culture. The museum is not always open, so make an appointment ahead of time for a special viewing with the owner, complete with authentic dance videos showcasing the masks. Admission is inexpensive — about 100 pesos, which the owner donates to a local day care center.

18. San Miguel de Allende Hot Air Balloon

See the best of the town’s beauty, architecture, and archaeological sites from above with a hot air balloon trip. Set that alarm and check out Globo San Miguel or Coyote Canyon Adventures for San Miguel de Allende hot air balloon trips for couples or groups to try something truly unique, like riding in a hot air balloon!

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19. Take Part in the San Miguel de Allende Festivals

Festivals here are the best. Due to the beautiful weather, and the always-warm temperature, the best time to visit San Miguel de Allende can only be answered as “all-year-round” to catch a festival. Festivals run the gamut — whether it’s Mexican Independence Day, Dia de los Locos, or Day of the Dead San Miguel de Allende, these events are the place to be for dancing, colorful costumes, music, parades, and fireworks.

20. San Miguel de Allende, Self-Guided and Unstructured

This is your vacation, so plan some things to do in San Miguel de Allende that offer “you” time and, after you’ve gotten your fill of architecture and the food, indulge yourself in a couple of unusual activities that are exclusive to you.

For me, that meant a self-guided avocado and guacamole tour, a self-guided search for the best tacos, a self-guided chocolate-tasting tour, and a beautiful walk in the park to enjoy the weather. For you it might mean heading to Juarez Park to channel your inner artist and sketch, or joining in the local nightlife. Don’t forget those selfies along the way either — San Miguel pictures offer endlessly stunning backdrops.

21. San Miguel de Allende Hot Springs

There are several hot springs near San Miguel de Allende that would be excellent places to visit. One of the most popular is La Gruta, which is just a short drive from the city and has a series of natural hot springs in a beautiful, lush botanical gardens style environment, with waterfalls and caves adding to the ambiance. La Gruta also offers a range of spa services, such as massages and facials, to enhance your relaxation experience. For those who want to extend their stay, there are bungalows available for overnight accommodations.

Other nearby hot springs include Escondido Place, which is a more secluded and intimate setting. You can also indulge in a range of spa treatments, including massages, facials, and body wraps. There are also options of rooms and suites for those who want to stay overnight. So, if you’re looking to unwind and soak in some natural hot springs, these are all great options to choose from when planning your visit to San Miguel de Allende Mexico.

Upcoming Trip

Join us in San Miguel de Allende for an exciting trip. Enjoy the sights, sounds, and tastes of Mexico’s central highlands colonial-era city!

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