Authentic haciendas in the historic city of Aguascalientes

Aguascalientes, in the center of Mexico, is a popular tourist destination thanks to its haciendas, cattle ranches, agriculture, and rich historical heritage.

Authentic haciendas in the historic city of Aguascalientes
Mexican wine has become a trigger for tourism products in Aguascalientes and is generating attractive experiences for food and wine tourism. What is your favorite Mexican wine? Credit: SECTUR México

Aguascalientes is a land of haciendas, cattle ranches, agriculture, and history, which have become an exciting tourist product as this central state of the Mexican Republic is part of the so-called Route of Independence.

Among the different tourist products offered by the central state of Aguascalientes is that of historic haciendas, a valuable tour that starts in the city of Aguascalientes, the capital.

Start with the bullfighting hacienda "El Chichimeco" and the bullfighting ranch "Armillita Hermanos," both from the 18th century. Visit the main house and the dynasty museum, which is one of the most important in the world. Today, Fermin Espinosa's "Armillita IV" carries on the bullfighting tradition.

If you are lucky, you will meet Fermin or Miguel Espinosa Menendez, since they are attentive to the ranch. Once in the campo bravo, you will see the heifers and stallions in their corrals, to later enter the farmhouse where many stories have been woven around the bull, and it was there were the sons of the master, Fermin Espinosa Saucedo, started the tradition.

Later, visit the historic hacienda of San Blas de Pabellon, better known as "Pabellon de Hidalgo", because it is where the priest Don Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, also called "The Father of the Homeland", passed through in 1811. There is also a museum dedicated to him and a timeline from the time of Mexico's Independence, as well as a bib and braces that belonged to him.

The hacienda that dates from 1596 has been, since 1964, the Insurgency Museum has a stele of Independence formed by an eagle's head holding a cloth where you can read the legend "Libertad" (Freedom). Inside there is a mural where we can see that it was there that the command of the Insurgent Army was taken away from the priest, Hidalgo, to later flee to the north of the country.

The tour takes you to a temple built for San Blas in 1282, an oil painting for the souls in purgatory, the ruins of the Tienda de Raya, stables, the northern part of the hacienda where water was brought in, and a stone arch through which an aqueduct fed the orchards that were there.

Hacienda Garabato in Aguascalientes is an excellent venue for special events.

Garabato hacienda in Aguascalientes

Fifteen kilometers away is the "Garabato" hacienda, from the XVII century, where you can admire a Romanesque-style temple, one of the few in the center of the country. Walk into the church of San Isidro Labrador and be amazed by the French-style paintings, the floor, which is still used and made of mesquite wood, the sacristy, and the inside of the big house, which was one of the first cattle ranches in America as well as a grain-producing hacienda.

End the visit with a hacienda that was part of the hacienda of San Blas de Pabellón, which was known as an estancia, which was place where the hacienda owners, in order to avoid long trips to see their land, built smaller houses so that they could spend the night there and be aware of the work in the fields.

This hacienda, built in 1854, is one of the best preserved. In addition, you can enter the big house and see the rooms that are still in use: the main bedrooms, one of which has a Carrara marble sink; the study; the kitchen with a wood stove; and the hospice.

If time and weather conditions permit, have a ride through the vineyards aboard a calandria, obviously with one of the artisanal wines that visitors can taste there or, if you prefer, inside the cellar, since it is one of the most important wineries in the state of Aguascalientes.

If you so decide, taste the gastronomy of Aguascalientes in the typical restaurant "La Saturnina", a large house from the XVIII century, with a buffet of exquisite regional dishes such as "Chile Aguascalientes", "las pacholas" or "las chiquiadas". Even if you wish, they could have a wine pairing with a wine from Aguascalientes since the corkage of wines is complimentary.