Monday, 18 January 2016

Dolores Hidalgo and Atotonilco

Javier, our gardener, comes here on Mondays and Fridays to sweep the grounds and water the many potted plants on the property and the roof decks. He also checks the propane tanks and orders replacements as needed. Last Friday he asked us if we would like to go to Dolores Hidalgo with him and his son Rodrigo. He would love to show us this beautiful city. We gladly accepted.

The beautiful church at the plaza principal

Dolores Hidalgo Cuna de la Independencia National is the official name of the city. Before Mexico gained independence from Spain the town was simply known as Dolores, but on September 16, 1810 father Miguel Hidalgo cried for independence and started the revolution that eventually ended the Spanish rule. To honour the father the town got renamed, and is now known as Dolores Hidalgo.

Father Miguel Hidalgo

More than half of the people who call this city home are involved in the ceramics industry. The pottery produced here is exported to markets all over the world. Shelagh and I dropped a few Pesos here on some ceramic items small enough to bring home. We then visited the plaza principal and admired the church where father Miguel Hidalgo uttered his famous cry. There was a mass in progress so we did not enter the church, but we will do that when we return to the city on Tuesday with Darcy, our neighbour here.

Creative barbecues

We treated Javier and Rodrigo to an ice cream cone from one of the vendors in the square, delicious! The plazas in Mexico are the social hub of town and especially on Sundays they are well visited by families out for a get together.

Rodrigo - Shelagh - Javier
The Bandstand

We left the city after a couple of hours and then visited a small sanctuary church complex called Atotonilco. This place is a Unesco world heritage site. The church has the most fantastic ceiling decor and is referred to as the Sistene Chapel of Mexico. There is also the possibility to stay here for seven days to do penance for your sins. On the way to the church there are vendors selling the implements needed for this penance. Like short whips to slap yourself with, reminiscent of the scene in the movie "The da Vinci Code" when Silas whips himself with a cat of nine tails.

The Cloister at Atotonilco
Ceiling detail
Whips
A Cat of Nine Tails

We had a great day with Javier and Rodrigo. The kindness of Mexican people is remarkable...

 

14 comments:

  1. Great boondocking spot for rvers behind the municipal auditorium. Comes with free wifi and water. Check in with the Proteccion Civil and they will let you stay. Safe and secure. Don't forget all the great ice cream flavors Dolores Hidalgo is famous for; shrimp, chorizo, rose petal, nopal, just to name a few. Great city and the remodeling they did for the bicentennial was well done. The food around town can't be beat either. Great pictures.

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    1. Thanks Chris, we'll be back in this town on Tuesday to try more ice cream!

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  2. ...so I guess you are booking in for a week then, right??

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    1. I would probably need three weeks, and two whips!

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  3. I am so glad that you made it to both places! That church is really something with all the painting on the ceilings and wall, I loved it there.

    We went to Dolores Hidalgo but never went to the centro area and now regret it. Maybe we will have to check out Chris's boondocking spot! We also never tried any of those ice cream flavours either so that is another thing on our list.

    If you check out our blog from when we went to Dolores Hidalgo, there is one pottery place where you can actually go in and see them making the pottery and hand painting it.

    www.travelwithkevinandruth.com

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  4. We really enjoyed Dolores Hidalgo when we were there. The bell that Father Hidalgo rang on that fateful day is on display in the museum attached to his church.

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  5. Excellent! Ya we missed finding Chris's spot - could find a place to park and so left .... too bad. Glad you had locals to take you around - definitely we have found that Mexicans are generally very kind and helpful! I love looking at the pottery....

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  6. What a fun place to explore, love Mexico.

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  7. Replies
    1. We too love the colour here. None of the photos have been adjusted for colour. The sky really is this blue, along with all the other colour. Thank you all for the wonderful comments.

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  8. Hmm, I don't suppose you could pick up 8 of those large plant pots for me. We can never find them here and I need to replace my in Kelowna. What a lovely day you had.

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    1. I'm right on it Contessa! Shelagh will take them as carry on luggage...

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    2. Contessa, isn't it time for you to do a little exploring of the interior?

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  9. What a wonderful day...I could totally see one of those wonderful barbeques on your deck!! :)

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