Saturday, January 3, 2009
Guanajuato is a gorgeous city of winding narrow streets and brightly coloured buildings stacked on the steep slopes of a ravine. The area was settled in 1559 because of the silver and gold deposits in the area which were among the world's richest. The difficult topography has resulted in a dense city filled with some beautiful architecture and a fascinating subterranean world of tunnels which act as main roads across the city today. The city was inscribed as a Unesco World Heritage site in 1988.
The series of small squares which are located along the main road are lined with small cafes and restaurants and overlooked by important cultural buildings or churches. The public spaces give the city a relaxed quality where public life is played out in the squares and streets.
The city is most easily navigated on foot, as the steep terrain and winding roads makes driving difficult. The lack of cars on the streets and squares off the main road and large pedestrians zones and number of people walking gives the city a safe and sociable atmosphere.