Fun Things to do in Queretaro (City and State):
Active Outdoor Activities
The national park in the Southern tip of the city surrounds an extinct volcano with a nice (easy) hiking throughout. You can hike up to the radio towers close to the top for an excellent view of the valley below.
Did we tell you there is a pyramid only 7km from the heart of Centro? Constructed in 300 BCE, El Cerrito has been a place or worship and sacrifice for the local indigenous tribes up until 1632 when it was abandoned. You can’t climb the pyramid but it makes for some terrific photos and it is pretty quick to visit first thing in the day before adventures further afield.
La Pena de Bernal
The Pueblo Magico of Bernal, about an hour from Queretaro is home to the largest freestanding monolith in the world. It rises just outside the town to an elevation of 1,420 feet. Half of which can be climbed without any special gear. If you can scurry over rocks, you can climb to the midway point and get back down in just over an hour. Views from the top are splendid.
Explore the 203 blocks of Centro Historico
Containing 1,400 monuments, statues, churches, and museums this UNESCO world heritage site offers something for everyone. Bring comfortable walking shoes and your sunscreen. Terrific restaurants, cafes, mercados and ice cream shops are sprinkled in liberally throughout the old quarter. It is mostly flat walking, but the area spans four square kilometers, and the sidewalks can be uneven.
Voted the best amusement park in the Bajio with over twenty attractions including a water park and animal park. You can rent a paddle boat or a pontoon boat and enjoy a bit of time on the lake or zip line over the lake. There are rollercoasters and other rides for the kids.
The village of Santa Rosa Jauregui is nearby, and fantastic street food is a fitting end to a morning exploring the park. Open Thursday- Sunday low season and Tuesday-Sunday around Christmas and Easter.
Shopping, Dining, and More:
The Antea mall is the second biggest in Latin America with top European, American, and Mexican designers. It is a top-quality luxury experience which frankly shocks Americans used to their local mall. Firstly, City Market, the most luxurious grocery store in Mexico is located at Antea as are many fine dining restaurants. Santo Mar for fine seafood and Enrico Tomas for excellent Spanish ham and tapas are just a few of the many dining experiences contained within. City Market itself has a Sushi Bar and Tapas Bar and the two anchor tenants of the mall (Liverpool and El Palacio de Hierro) both have large gourmet pavilions (It’s the entire top floor of Liverpool). Additionally, there is no corkage charge at City Market for any bottle of wine opened over $18 USD (300 pesos). The boys can hang out and try Mexican wine and the girls can browse through the top Mexican designers (or vice versa).
The Pueblo Magico of Bernal
There is more to Bernal than just the mountain. The tiny hamlet of 2,500 is chock full of artisans and there is a wide range of products on offer. Hand woven sweaters and pullovers, marble mortar and pestles, fire opals and jewelry stores, artisanal leather shops and alpaca sweaters are just a few of the handmade items available. The town is also known for their cheese bread (similar to a huge cheese Danish), goats milk caramel candies and sauces and blue corn gorditas with chicharron in the masa stuffed with all manner of delicious ingredients. Gorditas at El Negrito and an enormous michelada are practically a requirement of visiting the town. It is smack dab in the middle of the wine country as well, so it makes a lovely “first visit” prior to a day of visiting wineries!
The Pueblo Magico of Tequisquiapan
Tequis as we call it is a lot larger than Bernal (20,000 residents). The shopping options are a bit more upscale in Tequis with two large artisan mercados offering hammered tin mirrors adorned with Talavera tile, hammered copper pots, beautiful locally made clothing and an assortment of restaurants and bars. The town square has one of the most beautiful little “jewel boxes” of a chapel where weddings happen every weekend. Freixenet wine bar is in one corner off the plaza and offers excellent sparkling wines by the glass or bottle. The national wine and cheese festival takes over the town park the last two weekends of May and the first weekend of June. Tequis is very close to several excellent creameries so if cheese is your thing we can arrange for a tasting, tour or lunch with local wine or beer. Both villages have ATM’s.
Do you have a unique interest or are you looking for something special? Just let us know in advance and we can help you source that special something. You have our services for the entire day, and we are more than happy to take you to some unique areas and towns specializing in leather, ceramics, and gourmet products.
There are a wealth of great dining options in Queretaro. Fine dining options abound on Bernardo Quintana, in Juriquilla, and in Centro. We can do market tours in Centro or up in Santa Rosa Jauregui. Street food is safe to eat and hygienic (just go easy on the hot sauce if you don’t eat that back home). We have researched the best street food, not just in the city but also out in the country and in villages. So, if you are brave, we can have quite an rewarding experience. Additionally, on weekends we offer a Lamb Barbacoa and Pulque tour of Boye (a tiny village out in the country that specializes in this food and beverage). The Barbacoa tacos and Pulque trip can be paired with a winery, creamery, or Pueblo Magico tours of Bernal or Tequis. Queretaro is an international city, so you aren’t limited to Mexican cuisine. There are very good Japanese and Korean restaurants in town and there are a fair number of great Spanish restaurants.
There are thirty wineries in Queretaro but some of them are not open to the public and some are only open on weekends. We have done the hard work for you and identified the best boutique producers for white, red, and sparkling so if your tastes are specific, we can custom tailor the tour to your preferences. Most of the wineries have excellent restaurants and a few have excellent local cheese boards to enjoy with their wines. All tours are in English, and we use our combined 40 years in the wine business to give you an incredible experience to remember.
Farm-to-Table Lunch at a Biodynamic Cheese Farm
This is a unique experience out in the country at a local biodynamic farm. Tour the farm, meet the animals, and taste the cheese produced by their goats, sheep, and cows. Afterwards, we will sit down to a multi-course lunch where almost all the food is produced on the farm.
We are lucky to have one of the best breweries in Mexico here in Queretaro. Hercules is a tour de force making many unique beers some flavored with exotic local fruits in a converted brown-fields factory complex close to centro. Their food is great, the beer is even better, and the facility is one of the hippest places in town. No time to visit the brewery and restaurants? They have a store on calle universidad in centro where you can taste, drink, or buy their beer and specialty liquor products. We often end our wine tours at Hercules, and it is not unheard of for clients to enjoy it so much, they stay late in the evening. It’s a very cheap five-minute uber ride from your hotel in centro.
Tequila and Mezcal
While we don’t make Tequila or Mezcal in Queretaro, we do have some bars with exceptional selections. We can take you out for a traditional lunch and after we have some food in our bellies, taste through some of the larger selections in town.
Choose what you want to do and build your own tour!
You have us for the whole day, so whether you want to shop and dine, drink wine and hike, or eat locally and shop at mercados, we can show you the best of Queretaro, your way!