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Guanajuato

Travel Guide North America Mexico Guanajuato

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Introduction

Guanajuato is a state in central Mexico. It is divided into 46 municipalities and its capital city is Guanajuato. The largest city in the state is León. It is located in North-Central Mexico. It is bordered by the states of Jalisco to the west, Zacatecas to the northwest, San Luis Potosí to the north, Querétaro to the east and Michoacán to the south. It covers an area of 30,608 km2.

Guanajuato is located between the arid north of the country and the lusher south, and it is geographically part of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt, the Mexican Plateau and the Sierra Madre Oriental. It was initially settled by the Spanish in the 1520s due to mineral deposits found around the now capital city of Guanajuato, but areas such as the Bajío region also became important for agriculture and livestock. Mining and agriculture have been the traditional mainstays of the state's economy, but today, about 30% of the state's GDP is accounted for by industry, which includes metals, automobiles, leather goods, processed foods and more.

The state is home to several historically important cities, especially those along the "Bicentennial Route", which retraces the path of Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla's insurgent army at the very beginning of the Mexican War of Independence. This route begins at Dolores Hidalgo, and passes though the Sanctuary of Atotonilco, San Miguel de Allende, Celaya and the capital of Guanajuato. Other important cities in the state include León, the most populous, and Irapuato.

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Geography

Guanajuato is located in the center of Mexico, north-west of Mexico City, bordering the states of Zacatecas, San Luis Potosí, Michoacán, Querétaro and Jalisco. It covers an area of 30,589 km² and is ranked 20th out of 31 states. It has an average altitude of 2,015 metres above sea level, with its territory divided among three of Mexico's physical regions, the Sierra Madre Oriental, the Mexican Plateau and the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. The Sierra Madre Oriental in Guanajuato consists of the Sierra Gorda and the Sierra del Azafrán in the northeast. The Mexican Plateau extends through the center of the state. Within, it subdivides into various regions parted by low-lying mountain chains such as the Sierra de la Cuatralba and the Sierra de Cubo. The Trans Mexican Volcanic Belt crosses the state in the south and includes the Bajío area, the Altos de Jalisco and the valleys area in the far south. The state is crossed by several mountain ranges which have mountains between 2,300 and 3,000 metres high. Mountain ranges average 2,305 metres and flat areas lie at around 1,725 metres above mean sea level. The other important mountain ranges include the Sierra Gorda to the north, the Sierra de Guanjuato in the southeast, the Comanja in the northwest and the Codorniz in the east

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Cities

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Events and Festivals

Day of the Dead

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.

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Weather

Climates in the state are grouped by precipitation and average temperatures into three major groups. The semi-arid climate is characterized by the fact that evaporation often exceeds precipitation. These climates cover about 40% of the state, mostly in the north. Semi-arid temperate regions are found in the municipalities of San Felipe, San Diego de la Unión, San Luis de la Paz, part of Dolores Hidalgo and San José de Iturbide, where precipitation varies between 400 and 500 mm and the average temperature is between 16 and 18 °C. Semi-arid semi hot climates can be found north of Dolores Hidalgo, around León and in areas near Celaya. In these municipalities, rainfall averages between 600 and 700 mm and the average annual temperature is between 18 and 20 °C. Temperate climates are judged by the presence of holm oak and pine forest, pine forests and/or pine forests with meadows. Humidity varies in these forest regions. Temperate semi-moist areas are mostly found in the southeast municipalities of Apaseo, Coroneo and Jerécuaro and in the center of the state. Precipitation varies from 600 to 700 mm and the average temperature is between 16 and 18 °C. Temperate and somewhat humid climates have rainfall averages of between 700 and 800 mm, with temperatures between 16 and 18 °C. These can be found in Pénjamo, Coroneo, Jerécuaro and parts of Guanajuato (municipality) and Dolores Hidalgo. Temperate climates with the most humidity are found in the Santa Rosa and municipality of Guanajuato. These have rainfall averages of over 800 mm and average temperatures of under 16 °C. Hot and moist climates in the state have temperatures ranging from 18 to 22 °C and are associated with tropical rainforest, with some grassland. These climates are subdivided into two types, one that receives less rainfall with a significant dry season and the other which is wetter. The drier type is found in Abasolo, Irapuato, Salamanca and Romita. In total, these hot and relatively moist climates can be found in about 40% of the state.

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Getting There

By Plane

Del Bajío International Airport (BJX) handles air transport to/from cities like Guanajuato, Silao and Leon. Destinations include Tijuana, Mexico City, Ciudad Juarez, Los Angeles, Chicago, Monterrey, Dallas/Fort Worth, Montreal and Houston.

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This is version 5. Last edited at 10:26 on Jun 3, 16 by Utrecht. 5 articles link to this page.

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