to Know Chapala & Ajijic
(click on the links below to take you to the subject of your choice.)
Getting to the Feria & Map
Where to Stay in Chapala or Ajijic
Eating at Lakeside
Are Chapala & Ajijic Safe?
Chapala & Ajijic Water
Chapala & Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico
Chapala and Ajijic
(Ah-hee-HEEK) are just 30 minutes south of the Guadalajara International
Airport. Both are two of the many villages that surround Mexico's largest
lake, Lake Chapala, 700 miles south of the US border.
The area is noted
for its exceptional climate. In November, daytime temperatures will be
around 70°F. This area is home to a vibrant international community
of Mexicans, Americans, Canadians and Europeans.
Internet, ATM banking,
hotels, restaurants, and public transportation exist side-by-side with
traditional Mexican life. The primary language is Spanish, but many people
speak some English.
Here is a beautiful
video on Mexico
- an incredible country full of color, adventures and cheerful, friendly
Getting to the Feria & Map
3-day Feria Maestros Del Arte folk art show is held at Club de Yates de Chapala (Chapala
Yacht Club) in Chapala - check the map
or just follow the signs. We suggest that you arrange for taxi service
from your hotel.
Admission each day
to the fair is 50 pesos. We've made the price of admission very affordable
so that you can come every single day! Get your hand stamped and return
as many times during the day as you like.
- we will have taxis available at the Feria
Taxi stand at Plaza - 376 766-0674, 766-1663 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Recommendations:
- Francisco 333
157 8060 (cellphone - from a land-line add 045 in front of the number).
He is also available to take you to and from the airport.
- Carlos 331
173 3424 (cellphone - from a land-line add 045 in front of the number.
) He is also available to take you to and from the airport.
taxi stand at Plaza 376 765-3511, 765-4697 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Recommendations:
- Sergio 333
137 4218 (cellphone - from a land-line add 045 in front of the number.)
Sergio is also a certified tourguide and available to take you to
or from the airport.
buses are also available. Ask for the information at your hotel.
during the daylight hours will make it much easier to check into your
hotel or B&B, although many connecting flights into Guadalajara may
arrive at night - just alert your hotel to your arrival time. To enter
Mexico you need a passport
for identification purposes.
When you deplane,
you'll board a bus that will take you the short distance to Immigration
where you'll fill out an immigration form and have your passport stamped.
From there you'll
pick up baggage and pass through Customs. You'll find the Guadalajara
airport safe, easy to navigate, and friendly. ATMs that dispense pesos,
a Starbuck's Coffee, Burger King and gift shops are available after you
If you are not being
met by your hotel, the taxi kiosk
is just outside customs. Buy a ticket to Ajijic for about $30 US. Fares
are set so no haggling is required. Be sure that your
hotel has provided you with their address and directions.
Maestros del Arte ends Sunday at 4 p.m. Stay Sunday night and plan to
fly out the next day. Your hotel can make arrangements for your departure
and help you check that your flight is on time. Folk art is exempt from
duty so don't worry about declaring your purchases to Customs. If you've
bought too many items to carry, be sure to visit our on-site
shipper at the Show. They'll help you ship your treasures.
Staying in Chapala or Ajijic
sure to secure your hotel reservations well in advance.
is a list of hotels/B&Bs in both Chapala and Ajijic. If the name of
the hotel or B&B is underlined, you may click on it to go to their
website or email.
Hotel Quinta Quetzalcoatl
- Better known as Hotel QQ, this B&B has been totally restored. It
is a small, romantic inn located in Chapala. QQ is "the" place
at Lake Chapala Mexico to indulge yourself in peace and relaxation. If
you feel fit enough, QQ is about 6 blocks from the Feria site. (01152
from outside Méxic) (376) 765-3653 or from within Mexico: (376)
Chapala Inn - Located in downtown Chapala, on the shores of
Lake Chapala, within easy walking distance ( one short block) of shopping,
restaurants, banks, and lakeside transportation. If you feel fit enough,
the hotel is about 8 blocks from the Feria site. For more information
1-800-501-9446, phone 011 52 376 765-4786; Fax: 011 52 376 765-5174 http://www.mexonline.com/chapalainn.htm
Calli Aztatl Hotel Spa Boutique
- located about 6 long blocks from the Feria site, this small hotel offers 4 rooms ranging
from $900 pesos to $1500 pesos. There is a great restaurant on-site. 331 117 2325 (cellphone)
Hotel Perico de Chapala
- located in the hills north of the city and has a beautiful panoramic
view of Lake Chapala. 333 142 0012, email@example.com
- Hotel has restaurant, pool and extensive grounds. Hidalgo 296, Chapala.
If you're fit and want to walk, the hotel is within walking distance to
the Feria - of all the Chapala hotels listed, Montecarlo is the furthest
El Pequeño Suites Hotel
- El Pequeño is a grand 75 year old Mexican home that has been completely modernized into a cute little guesthouse with four guest rooms, located in the most convenient part of Chapala. Click here to email:www.elpequenosuites.com/contact.html
or call 503 621 3818. English spoken.
Hotel Villa San Francisco
- Situated in a perfect location on a beautiful palm-lined boulevard,
just yards from Mexico’s largest and most beautiful lake. To email click on the link: www.hotelvillasanfrancisco.com
or call 376 765 2128.
Hotel Villa Samary - Right off the plaza
in Chapala, Morelos #199, this 6-room hotel is within walking distance
of the Feria. Rooms are very basic but clean and run $400 pesos/double
(kingsize bed). (01152 from outside Mexico) (376) 765-3960,
Ajijic Suites - Hidalgo #72, Ajijic, (376) 766 1920 - Comfortable, clean, economical accommodation just two blocks west of the Plaza. Comfy beds, silky sheets & fluffy towels await your arrival!
del Sol - Nestled between the Sierra Madre mountains and Lake Chapala,
this B&B is centrally located on a quiet residential street, just
two blocks from the the Ajiic plaza. Just a ten-minute taxi/bus ride to
Casa de las Flores - a haven
of peace and tranquility with 18th century wooden doors, that open to
a secure private garden and pool area. www.casafloresajijic.com
Tres Leones - Elegant B&B and inn. Enjoy the comfortable and relaxing
atmosphere surrounded by the beauty of Mexico, with a spectacular lake
and mountain view. www.casatresleones.com
Casita Montaña B&B - "Little home on the mountain" is located at the
corner of the Carretera and Ave. Colón in Ajijic. From the US/Canada
918 895 4089; in Mexico (376) 766-5513;
Danza del Sol - 35 minutes from International Airport, cozy rooms,
beautiful colonial mexican style, 25 Suites, 8 Junior Suites and 4 Masters
Suites. Each one has bathroom, telephone, chimney, TV with cable, kitchen,
living room, a patio for familiar coexistence and many of them its own
B&B - Lorraine Pasini previously owned an award-winning
inn in Glen Allen, CA (in the heart of wine country) and brings with her
the expertise of making guests feel at home by providing quality service.
Estrellita's is conveniently located in the heart of Ajijic, two blocks
from the plaza. www.estrellitasinnajijic.com
Lindo Ajijic - A luxury B&B on the banks of Lake Chapala in Ajijic with a wonderful view - adults only. Calle Angel Flores 17-A, Las Salvias Ajijic - enter from 5 de Febrero y Tempisque, 33 1162 1614 cellphone or Whatsapp.
Hotel Italo - located 1/2
block from the Ajijic Plaza, this hotel is in the "budget" category.
Rooms are 285p/person/night or 380/2 persons/night. If you book for multiple
nights during the Feria, be sure to ask for the 10-15% discount. Guadalupe
Victoria #8, Ajijic. firstname.lastname@example.org
, (376) 766-2221.
Casa Blanca - an oasis in paradise, 16 de Septiembre
#29, Ajijic. To telephone from outside Mexico 01152 (376) 766-4440; 1-800
Hotel La Estancia (no website) - Eight
rooms with king or twin beds, cable TV, restaurant. Located on Ajijic’s
main street near banking, shopping, galleries. Small pets okay.
Real de Chapala - Located in Ajijic on the shore of Lake Chapala.
They have 85 rooms and 5 Suites, ample gardens with a view of the mountains
and the lake, four convention/event halls, restaurant, pool, tennis courts,
soccer, volley ball and a recreational area for children.
Nueva Posada Hotel - The oldest hotel in Ajijic. Right on the shores
of Lake Chapala, this hotel has a restaurant and beautiful gardens. Just
a ten-minute taxi/bus ride to the Feria. http://www.hotelnuevaposada.com/
Los Artistas B&B - Spectacular, serene, secure. www.losartistas.com
Villa Eucaliptos - Private Mexican villa located one block from Lake
Chapala in the Heart of Ajijic. Enter into a private world all of your
own, set in colonial Spanish architecture with magnificent fifteen-foot
ceilings and arches. http://villaeucaliptos.tripod.com
SAN ANTONIO TLAYACAPAN
Casa Luz B&B - Colón #100,
376 766 4648 or 331 023 9868, email@example.com. Home of local artist
Luz Preciado. An inspiring space to enjoy and relax.
RIBERAS DEL PILAR
Mar Chapalico - San Jorge #6,
376 765 6952, firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Unique B&B built by the owner. Each room is different and the B&B
is on Lake Chapala.
SAN JUAN COSALÁ
Restaurante Viva México, Tía Lupita - Porfirio Díaz Pte. #92, 2-1/2 blocks west of the plaza, serving a wide variety of Meixcan and North American favorites and daily specials at reasonable prices. Open noon until 8 pm. Closed Thursday.
Rincon de Frida - Hidalgo Sur, Jocotepec Centro, 387 763 2801. Closed Sunday this little gem of a restaurant serves fabulous food - open for breakfast and lunch - sandwiches are fresh and very good.
de las Flores B&B - Amazing atmosphere in which to relax and feel at home, while staying in a typical Mexican neighborhood
- savor Mexico's wonderful people, customs and culture. Personalized tours
are offered that you are unlikely to find anywhere else.
see our links page for other hotel/B&B
the Guadalajara, Tlaquepaque or Tonalá areas
at the Feria
food is available at the Feria
so there is no need to leave during the day. Enjoy a meal while spending the day making your folk art purchases, watching
artist demonstrations, the fashion show, entertainment or enter the raffle.
Meet the artists who are the backbone of Mexico's art culture. You won't
regret it. You'll be amazed at how affordable everything is when you buy
from the source.
Where to Eat When not at the Feria
are many fine restaurants at Lakeside - just about any type of food desire.
Casita Del Molcajete - seafood of all varieties. Free margaritas. 132 Paseo Ramon Corona on the malecon
Café Paris - one of the best breakfast restaurant at Lakeside. Calle Hidalgo, 376 765 5021. Open 8 am to 2 pm every day.
Coffee Hour Restaurant - Avenida Francisco I Madero 413 A
Delicias - one of the best breakfast restaurant at Lakeside. Calle Hidalgo, 376 765 5021. Open 8 am to 2 pm every day.
Isla Cozumel - Seafood. Margaritas are FREE. On the malecon at Paseo Ramón Corona 22, Centro. Closed Monday. Open Tues-Sat 10 am to 9 pm
Letra CH - Restoran Del Mar Restaurant - interesting menu, great view of the Lake, Carretera San Nicolas #4, Chapala, (331) 117- 2325
Toca Madera - the best hamburgers and wedgy fries at Lakeside. Avenida Ramon Corona 15a,
- Argentinian food. Menu is very diverse, the "flap"
steak is unbelievable! Morelos #5, Ajijic.
(no website) - Carretera Ajijic-Jocotepec #1088, Los Charales, San Juan Cosalá. 376 106 1627. Open 11 am to 10 pm - closed Wednesday. Great menu - pasta, Mexican, pizza, steaks, and the duck is fabulous!
Cocinart - 16 de Septiembre #4c, Ajijic, (33) 1395 3810 cellphone.
Facebook: cocinart. Great prices, exceptional menu - a real favorite with the locals.
Hosteria del Arte (no website but check Trip Advisor - Small Italian restaurant just west of Ajijic. Try the fried calamari as an appetizer. Then you have your work cut out for you choosing one of the delicious entrees. Save room for the best tiramisu or panna cotta you've ever had! Buon appetito!
- Exceptional Austrian-German cuisine. Their wine list is long.
German, Dutch, and Mexican beers are available. Blvd. Ajijic #118-A
(in upper La Floresta, opposite the Auditorium). (376) 766-0437.
Taco - This is the
best burrito place at Lakeside. It is conveniently located, on
the Libramiento, next to the car wash - Libramiento Chapala Ajijic
#132, Interior 23. 331 230 6173. Monday – Saturday from 9 a.m.
to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Nueva Posada Restaurant - Donato
Guerra #9, in Ajijic right on the lake. Breakfast, lunch &
dinner. International cuisine in a beautiful setting.
Telares (The Looms)
- On Morelos across from Ajijic Tango, this
restaurant boasts umbrella-covered tables around a pretty garden.
Try the salmon, steaks, and chicken; finish the meal with an espresso.
Full bar. Morelos #6, Ajijic. (376) 766-0428.
- Family style, nightly specials, good simple food. Soup or salad
and dessert included with entree. People love the corn pudding
that comes with the entrees. Ocampo
in village, west of Colon 1.5 blocks.
- Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Menu is a mixture of Mexican and international favorites. Ramón
Corona 132, San Antonio Tlayacapan.
Deli & Restaurant -
Carretera Chapala-Jocotopec 91, San Antonio.. 376 766 3822 Monday
through Friday 11:00a.m. to 4:p.m. Closed Saturday and Sunday.
Toscana de Alessandro - (376) 765 6996. Paseo de la Revolución #122, La Floresta (across from Auditorio) The best pizza we've ever had!
- A great restaurant for serious
gourmets - steaks, fresh crab cakes made with with real crab not
surimi, mushroom soup, comfort food like pizza, mac and cheese,
roasted beef brisket, and fresh made shrimp burgers as well as
luscious desserts. On Carretera Ajijic-Jocotepec (highway) across
from the Strom Moving company.
Restaurant - Good breakfasts, daily specials, salad bar,
good Sunday brunch buffet - mixture of Mexican and American favorites.
In Ajijic right next to El Torito Market, on the Carretera.
Thai Restaurant - Ajijic
on Ramon Corona #11. 376 766 5665 Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 11:30am
– 9:00 pm Friday & Saturday 11:30am -9:00 pm Closed Thursday.
Sunday from 11:30am -7:00
Cafe - Large airy, restaurant with
good breakfasts and chili relleños on the lunch/dinner
menu. On the Carrtera Chapala-Ajijic in a small strip mall onn
the lakeside of the road in Riberas del Pilar.
Tabarka - Consistently excellently prepared food, off the busy carretera directly down Rio Zulu toward the lake, Ajijic, 376 766-1588, David Abadía.
Domingos - Salvador the owner serves
you himself. Reasonable prices. Specials can include Mexican pre-Hispanic,
Indian (Mexican) dishes. Mexican and international cuisine. Spanish
coffee and crepes are the signature dessert, always prepared at
tableside by Salvador. Ocampo # 204 west side of Ajijic.
- BBQ ribs, steaks, chicken, Mexican
dishes, a nice/fresh salad bar, and his daily specials are always
good. On the Carreterra in San Antonio almost next to Super Lake
San Juan Cosalá
Viva Mexico Tia Lupita - Porfirio Diaz 93, San Juan Cosala, 387 761 1058. Excellent Mexican food with a flair.
if you venture into Tlaquepaque or Guadalajara, here are a few restaurants we recommend:
Tlaquepaque - Rio San Pedro - Calle Juárez 300, Centro,
333 659 6136. Casa de las Flores B&B in Tlaquepaque recommends this restaurant to their guests. Outstanding menu, especially the two pages of chilaquiles to choose from. Food was fabulous.
Tlaquepaque - Adobe
Fonda - Independencia 195, (333)
657-2792 , daily 12-7 p.m. This is both a shop and a restaurant
and is one of the more fun ones in Tlaquepaque. Contemporary Mexican
food. Everything on the menu is well prepared.
Guadalajara - El
Sacromonte - Pedro Moreno #1398,
(333) 825-5447 A beautiful little restaurant , especially at night
with all the little twinkle lights. Very popular with the haute
Guadalajarans so make a reservation for dinner. Updated Mexican
dishes that have been famous for so many years - it has music,
and an outdoor patio.
Guadalajara - il Duomo (no website - check Trip Advisor) - Av. Americas #202, (333)
615-4952. Easy to find, in the first block after you turn off
Av. Mexico going north. Incredible Italian food, a really good
salad bar with daily changes based on what's fresh.
Guadalajara - Pierrot
- Justo Sierra # 2355, (333) 630-2087, opens
at 1:30. Traditional French, very well done, with very good service
from white tux waiters.
Paying in Chapala or Ajijic
your ATM card. Lake
Chapala is a cash society. There are maps at the Entrance of the Feria showing where
all the local ATM machines are located and we offer a free shuttle
to the ATM of your choice. Just ask one of the parking attendants and
they will assist you. 2014 is the first year the Feria will offer credit card service for all artists who have signed up. If you are having difficulties making your purchases, ask a volunteer to direct you to the Expo Pay area.
We do not recommend
traveler's checks and will not accept them at the Feria
- here it is quite a procedure to get them cashed in the banks. The Feria
will change your US dollars or cash a check for you if
needed - ask at the entrance.
Is this Area of Mexico Safe?
often gets what we living here consider "a bad rap" in the foreign
media. There is unrest in parts of Mexico the same as in any other part
of the world. There is also crime. BUT when you compare Mexico crime statistics
with those of the US or Canada, you will find them very much lower. After
all, why would the "largest" group of expatriates in the world
stay in Mexico if it was truly and unsafe place to live or visit?
all the negative press appearing in the press, Linda Ellerbee's (well-known
journalist) assessment of Mexico gives a much more accurate picture of
the Mexico that we know and love -
"Mexico: One Journalist's View".
We who live here applaud those journalists
who do not join their colleagues in jumping on the bandwagon and exaggerating
what is happening today in Mexico.
Here, we offer an
article by Charles Simpson entitled "The
New Global Economic Reality." There are keen insights as to why
the US continues to malign Mexico on various fronts. Read and judge for
yourself once you see the comparisons and information Mr. Simpson provides.
Chapala and Ajijic
are both lovely villages whose people are centered around family and tradition.
To keep your visit a happy one, observe normal travel safety. Make Xerox
copies of your passport, ticket, credit cards and other documents and
keep the originals in your hotel safe.
as much cash as you need for a day's purchases and keep an eye on your
Can I Drink the Water?
drinks bottled water! It is readily
available at corner grocery stores, in your hotel, and in restaurants.
If you have a delicate stomach we recommend carrying Pepto Bismal tablets.
The restaurants we recommend above are very reliable. If you think you
may need the services of a doctor - most of them make housecalls. Just
ask your hotel for information and assistance.
have some questions or perhaps you need more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org