San Luis Potosi- A town worth stopping for

It seems on the UNESCO World Heritage site circuit of central Mexico that colonial San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato and Morelia get all the love, while colonial San Luis Potosi (called SLP by locals) which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, get a little left behind. So we thought we would see what this city was all about. I like an underdog.

SLP is another Spanish colonial city that was established in the 1500s because of the rich silver and gold mines. In fact it was named Potosi after the rich mines in Potosi, Bolivia and the San Luis was from the French King Louis IX who is the city’s patron saint (he was heavily involved in the crusades, I guess that can make him a saint depending on what side of history you are on).

SLP was a very European feeling city in layout and architecture, but very Mexican in culture. There were not a lot of tourists that we saw, but it was a easy city to explore and was very pretty. We kept saying we felt like we were in Europe, and liked the busy, lived in feel of this city.

Plaza del Carmen. Trying to get oriented.

Plaza del Carmen. Trying to get oriented.

Plaza de los Fundadores (founders plaza).

Plaza de Armas with the the cities main cathedral in the background.

Plaza de Aranzazu. Loved the yellow church.

Plaza de Aranzazu. Loved the yellow church.

Jardin de San Francisco, my favorite square.

All the towns squares were full of people. Great place to get an ice cream and people watch.

Templo de San Francisco.

Templo de San Francisco.

This church has stunning carvings all along the front. Templo del Carmen.

This church has stunning churrigueresque carvings all along the front. Templo del Carmen.

I think this was Plaza de los Fundadores where the city was founded.

I think this was Plaza de los Fundadores where the city was founded.

In SLP we also went to our first Mexican micro brewery. We like Mexican beer, but when you are used to IPAs and craft beers, it is rather “one note”, or as we have been calling it lately, Mexican water. The micro brewery was great, but the prices were on par with San Francisco, which limited our consumption. We also saw a lot of young Mexican “hipsters” in this city. With the obvious trendy youth scene here (there is a university) it seemed like there were a lot of options for bars and restaurants that were a little edgier than we had seen in the other UNESCO cities mentioned above. We ate one meal of falafel in cage like metal chairs suspended from the ceiling. It was rather hard to eat as you were swinging around…..

Lastly, if you find yourself ever visiting here, try the tacos and enchiladas potosinos, they are soaked in a red chili sauce and unique to this city. YUM.

Micro brewery is on the right of Plaza San Francisco.

Micro brewery is on the right of Plaza San Francisco.

I got an IPA and it was good.

I got an IPA and it was good.

Mexican hipsters. They all looked really cool, but maybe I am just getting old =)

Mexican hipsters. They all looked really cool, but maybe I am just getting old =)

It is a city worth stopping for, even if just for half a day. However, if you are overlanding, some of the camp sites in the Church’s guide are no longer open. We drove to Rio Verde and spent a miserable night in a Pemex because it got dark before we could find a camping option.

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