Queretaro, the capital of Queretaro state and one of the largest cities surrounding Mexico City, contains enough sightseeing treasures to satisfy any Royal Holiday traveler. With its bustling economy centered on mining, manufacturing, and agribusiness, it has become a rich city filled with modern culture and amenities. It also remains one of the country’s most prominent historic landmarks, with a history stretching back to its founding by Franciscan monks in the 14th century. From the Historic Monuments Zone, a UNESCO World Heritage site since its revitalization in the 1990s, to the nearby Sierra Gorda, Queretaro possesses enough charm and excitement to enchant any Royal Holiday member.
Royal Holiday visitors to Queretaro stay at an authentic, 16th-century hacienda-turned-luxury hotel, Hacienda Jurica, where Spanish colonial architecture belies ultramodern luxuries. Its lavishly appointed rooms will make any Royal Holiday member feel at home, while its gorgeous grounds include everything travelers expect from a top-tier resort. Visitors can take a dip in the heated pool, play a game of volleyball or tennis, enjoy a drink in the former farmhouse that contains the Las Calandrias bar, or delight in the international cuisine found at the Los Hules Restaurant. Located only a short drive from the Queretaro city center and close to other delightful communities throughout the state, the city serves as an ideal home base for experiencing this Mexican paradise.
Known throughout the country as one of the safest and friendliest cities in Mexico, Queretaro has taken many steps to preserve its history while enabling continued growth and success. Royal Holiday travelers will want to start their explorations with a bus tour of the historic city center, which features excellent examples of colonial architecture and city planning. The Franciscan monks who originally colonized the city left behind beautiful missions with impressive facades that combine European artistic traditions with the native Indios’ style. Other visitors will want to investigate the grand Capuchinas Covent, the location of the Restoration Museum and the nearby City Museum, two handsomely appointed centers of learning for those interested in the region and country’s history.
While history buffs will find much to love in Queretaro, Royal Holiday members interested in modern Queretaro will not be disappointed. Many tourists enjoy taking in a relaxing journey from Queretaro to Tequisquiapan, a stretch of the Mexican countryside devoted to vineyards and dairies, including farms like Quesos Vai, which offers a guided tour through the cheese production process. Families will want to visit the nearly 2,000 animals living at the Wameru Zoo Park in El Marques, while those looking for a relaxation will enjoy a trip to the charming villages near the city, including San Juan del Rio.
For Royal Holiday members who enjoy some excitement while vacationing, Queretaro, despite its age, provides thrills and fun aplenty. Golfers will find 81 holes spread across several delightful country clubs, while off-road enthusiasts will have no trouble finding an ATV tour through the Sierra Gorda. Queretaro also serves as a great destination for travelers looking to rock climb; Bernal Rock is one of the largest monolith formations in the world, and the limestone surfaces of Potrero Chico will challenge even expert climbers.