The Mexican Independence Movement got its start more than 200 years ago. In 1810, a Roman Catholic priest by the name of Miguel Hidalgo delivered his now infamous Grito de Dolores (Cry of Dolores) in the town of Dolores in Guanajuato state. Ordering the church bells to be rung, Hidalgo called for the end of 300 years of Spanish rule in Mexico.
Start your tour of Mexico’s Independence route in colonial Guanajuato. The first major victory against the Spanish was won at the Alhondiga de Granaditas, a former granary. Shortly thereafter, revolutionary leaders Hidalgo, Allende, Aldama and Jimenez were captured and beheaded, their heads returned to Guanajuato and hung from the four corners of the Alhondiga where they would stay for the next ten years.
Travel east of Guanajuato to arrive in the town of Dolores, which has since been renamed Dolores Hidalgo in honor of Miguel Hidalgo. The road from Guanajuato to the town of Dolores Hidalgo passes by the La Valenciana silver mine, a source of much wealth and prosperity throughout Guanajuato history.
En route from Dolores Hidalgo to San Miguel de Allende you’ll pass by Atotonilco, an important pilgrimage destination, religious sanctuary and shrine located just outside the town of Dolores Hidalgo. Hidalgo’s army passed through Atotonilco on their way to San Miguel de Allende, taking with them a banner of the Virgin of Guadalupe as their flag.
The colonial highland town of San Miguel de Allende is named in honor of Ignacio Allende. San Miguel was the birthplace of Allende, and his former home has been converted into a museum with murals that depict important events throughout Guanajuato history.
September is el mes del la patria (the month of our nation), a month long celebration of Mexican history and independence, which includes the official celebration of Independence Day on September 16th. Join the masses in squares and plazas across the country to enjoy music, dancing and traditional cuisine. Viva Mexico!