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We are traveling in Mexico again this winter of 2012
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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Guadalajara History

Thinking about the movie we watched last night. I’m kind of like Julie – I wonder if anyone does read this blog or am I just talking to myself. That’s okay as I do that all the time anyway.
More about Guadalajara – don’t know where to start. Think I’ve said enough about the campground. The weather has been good, very cool at night and in low 80s during the3 day. The altitude of 5300 has bothered me some days, especially when the smog is heavy. And I found out – if I eat and then walk around it bothers me more, get somewhat out of breath. So now eat when we get home. The traffic is very heavy all over. No matter what street you are on. But now we kind of know our way around and have found easier ways into and out of the Centro district. Also know where there are a couple of convenient parking garages.
Right down town are several Plazas, government buildings and old buildings. Guadalajara has been more the religious center of Mexico so there are LOTS of churches. We’ve been to several and haven’t even scratched the surface.
Guess I’ll start with the Metropolitan Cathedral with its twin yellow tile towers.
Can you imagine putting this tile up there?
It’s construction started in 1561 ordered by King Philip II of Spain. It has undergone several changes through the years, but reflects the cultural aspect of the 18th Century. It has a mixture of styles the renaissance on the façade – 1618. The present towers with their twin needle for with the yellow tiles were built in the 19th century after two earthquakes destroyed part of the church. Inside it is beautiful.

Then we visited a couple more churches a few blocks away. These were built by the Fransciscans. One of them San Francisco was actually the first church built in the town – before the Cathedral. Construction began in 1580 and throughout the years there has been much remodeling as you can see in the picture. The interior is very subdued and classic.
Then we crossed the street to the Templo de Aranzazú.
The exterior is very simple but the interior is very elaborate. With golden churrigueresque altarpieces. This is a portion of the ceiling.
One of the three altars
Closer look.
It was built between 1749-52. Just a couple of pictures of it. We could have stayed there and just looked for a long time. But wanted to get to the Palacio de Gobierno to see the Mural by Orozco of Padre Miguel Hidalgo. (Just one of my weird thoughts – in every statue or mural of Hidalgo we’ve seen is is a really mean looking man.)
The building was finished in 1790. Gobierno Palacio
The inside of the building
Just a very small part of the mural of Hidalgo by Orozco
This was the second building built on this site, but the first deteriorated so much over a hundred years the new one had to be built. It was started in 1759 but construction was delayed because the Spanish government prohibited the manufacture of alcoholic beverages in Mexico so the country lost the income from the taxes on Mescal and had to postpone completing the building.
In the same area is the Teatro Degollado.
Again I’m at a loss for words to describe it.It was built between 1856-1866. It has 1453 seats.
The painting on the ceiling.
The glass ceiling in the lobby
The seats
The stage - there was a ballet rehearsal going on

I could go on and on about the buildings there. But think this can give you an idea of what can be seen here. Surrounding all these buildings are lots of plazas with fountains, statutes and gazebos. And there is always something going on in them.

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