Colima is a small state in western Mexico, on the Pacific coast. Away from the sea are mountains, a desert and a volcano. Colima is bordered by Jalisco and Michoacán, which are both popular destinations. Little Colima, however, is well worth a visit, boasting great beaches, friendly locals and one of Mexico's oldest cities.
The city of Colima was the capital of the Coliman Kingdom, an old civilisation from pre-colonial times. Now, it is the state's largest city - as well as its capital.
The state is in an offshoot of the Sierra Madre Occidental mountain range and geographically consists of four mountain systems. The most important of these is the Cerro Grande and its related peaks of Jurípicho-Juluapan, Los Juanillos, La Astilla, El Ocote, El Peón, El Barrigón, San Diego, and La Media Luna. The second consists of mountain chains parallel to the coast between the Marabasco and Armería Rivers, which include El Espinazo del Diablo, El Escorpión, El Tigre, El Aguacate, El Centinela, El Tora and La Vaca. The third is located between the Armería and Salado Rivers and include the Alcomún y Partida, San Miguel y Comala and San Gabriel/Callejones peaks. The last is between the Salado and Naranjo or Coahuayana Rivers and contains small mountain chains such as the Piscila, Volcancillos, La Palmera, El Camichín and Copales. Three quarters of the state is covered by mountains and hills.
At the very north of the state, the border is marked by two volcanoes. The Colima Volcano, also called the Volcán de Fuego, is active and the Nevado de Colima is not. The Nevado de Colima is taller at 4,264 metresand gives its name to the national park that surrounds it. The Colima Volcano is 3825 metres and has a pyramidal peak, in contrast to the other, which has been leveled somewhat. The last major eruptions of the Colima Volcano occurred in 1998 and 1999.
The main rivers of the state are the Cihuatlán (also called the Chacala, Marabasco, or Paticajo, which forms the state’s border with Jalisco on the west; the Armería, which descends from the Sierra de Cacoma and crosses the state north-south into the Pacific, and the Coahuayana River. The Salado is another important river, which flows entirely within Colima before emptying into the Coahuayana. Many of the state’s streams and arroyos empty into the Salado.
The state of Colima is divided into 10 municipalities (municipios), each headed by a municipal president (mayor). Municipalities are named after the city that serves as municipal seat. These municipalities could be best compared to counties in the United States, in that they have their own government, police, and services. They also hold their own culture which culminates to create the state's culture. Each has its own songs, dances, and traditional foods.
The municipalities are:
There are many activities to do in Colima, including camping, bike riding, jogging, walking, watching crafts, visiting ruins, tasting authentic Mexican food and going to local fairs and markets.
The main event is the state fair, which runs from October 29 to November 10.
Another popular event is the festival of Charro Taurinas in February, featuring bull fights.
Fiestas de la Guadalupana is a colourful, local religious holiday that runs for the nine days leading up to December 12.
Although the Day of the Dead is also celebrated in many Latin American countries except Mexico (and also in parts of Europe, Asia and Africa), the Day of the Dead (Spanish: Día de los Muertos) is most intensily celebrated in Mexciowhere where it is equal to a National Holiday. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. The celebration takes place on November 1st and 2nd, in connection with the Catholic holidays of All Saints' Day (November 1) and All Souls' Day (November 2). Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed and visiting graves with these as gifts. Although it is about the Dead, it is also a celebration where eating and partying both are common as well.
The predominant climate is hot and relatively moist, with the coast particularly moist. One exception is the Tecomán municipality where the climate is dry and very hot. The mildest climates are in the municipalities of Comala and Cuauhtémoc. On the coast, the average temperature varies from between 24 °C and 26º C and in the near, at the highest elevations, the temperatures averages between 20 °C and 22 °C.The rainy season is between August and November.
Miguel de la Madrid Airport (CLQ) in Colima and Playa de Oro International Airport (ZLO) in Manzanillo are the two main airports. There are direct flights to Colima from Mexico's main states like Monterrey, Mexico City and Tijuana.
From Guadalajara, it’s about 2 hours on the main road. It costs $180 pesos, to use the road, and about $200 worth of gas.The secondary road is ok, but there are many big buses and it will take an extra hour, so it will take 3 or 4 hours to get to Colima.
The bus from Guadalajara takes about 3 hours. One recommended bus service is ETN, which offers comfortable seats for $220 pesos. The buses have TV. Two cheaper options are La Lineal Plus and Primer Plus, which cost around $180 pesos. There are even cheaper services (around $100 pesos) which stop in many little towns.
There are a few cruise ships that come to Manzanillo.
The main foods in Colima are tortillas, beans, pork and cow meat and spicy food.
There are many bars in Colima.
|Hostal Comalli||Reforma 193||Guesthouse||-|
|El Litchi Hostal Colima||27 de Septiembre 307||HOSTEL||86|
There are not many cheap hostels in Colima.
There is the University of Colima, which has great facilities and many carriers.
There are 3 main hospitals, and many clinics where you can take care of any diseases.
Colima is generally quite safe.
Internet cafe's are widely available and you generally can find one in the direct vicinity. Sometimes photocopy stores or photo processing stores will double as an internet cafe with a couple of computers. Look for signs reading "Acceso a Internet" or "Cibernautica" or "Cibercafe". Charges range from approx. US$1 an hour to US$3 an hour, depending on the location.
See also International Telephone Calls
Phone cards can be purchased anywhere and are needed for the majority of public phones. To call any number outside your region you have to dial 01 then followed by the area code. If calling a cellphone from a normal phone start with with 044. If calling cellphone to cellphone just dial the 10-digit number. To make an international call dial 00 followed by the country code then the local number. To call to Mexico, also dial 00 (most of the times) followed by the national code 52.
The Mexican postal service is operated by Correos de México. The post service in Mexico is pretty good although not very cheap. It is reliable regarding the sending of postcards, but it takes at least a week to send it to other countries (US/Canada), more so if you send it to Europe or Australia. For packages it is better to use international services like FedEx or UPS. If you are sending a package internationally with the Mexican postal service, take the package OPEN to the post office, they may want to inspect it. Seal it up at the post office. Post offices typically open from 8:00am to 6:00pm Monday to Friday, and 9:00am to 1:00pm Saturday. You will find post offices (Oficina de Correos) is almost any town or city in Mexico. To buy stamps it is best to go to the post office, although you can also get them at stamp machines, located outside the post offices, at bus stations, airports and some commercial establishments.
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