Our next destination was Guanajuato, capital city of the state of Guanajuato. Known as the birthplace of Diego Rivera and the origin of the Mexican independence, Guanajuato is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located in the Mexican Highlands, its origins are in gold and silver mining, bringing great wealth to the city. These mining tunnels have been converted to auto thoroughfares. The surface streets are narrow and winding. Most are alleys that cars cannot pass; some are long sets of stairs taxing the legs and lungs of even the locals. The historic Centro has numerous lush plazas and opulent, Baroque colonial-era buildings crammed along the mountainsides.
The Guanajuato Funicular whisks visitors and locals up the steep, 30° slope above Guanajuato, to the monument, El Pipila and the best view over Guanajuato. Though tempting to ride back down, take the time to walk through the charming alleyways back into Centro.