I’m really excited to interview Ray Blakney of Live Lingua about Querétaro, Mexico. Ray’s tips for the best things to do in Querétaro are awesome because he first visited the city when he joined the Peace Corps. Although his visit was brief, he fell in love with the city and moved here with his wife to start his first business. They’ve now lived in Querétaro for over 12 years and love that it is authentic Mexico, but with all of the safety and conveniences of the U.S. for about half the cost.
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Querétaro is a modern colonial city in central Mexico. It is the capital of a small province bearing the same name. It’s known for its well-preserved Spanish colonial architecture such as a striking pink stone aqueduct. Querétaro is a place of important Mexican history. Here is where Mexico declared its independence from Spain in 1821, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed with the U.S., and the Mexican constitution was signed in 1917. However, Mexican Independence Day is in September, not Cinco de Mayo as many people in the U.S. celebrate.
The city is at the same altitude as Denver and is about 85* year-round with no humidity. Ray says that the best time of year to visit is in September. Although many people in the U.S. celebrate Cinco de Mayo, Mexican Independence Day is actually September 16th. If you visit during this time, you experience incredible celebrations.
When you visit, take time to explore Pena de Bernal (the 3rd largest monolith in the world) and the Tequisquiapan hot springs. Ray says that they both get packed on the weekends, so visit during the weekdays. Nearby, you’ll also find the ancient pyramid of El Cerrito built by the Chipicuaro civilization. Visit on the weekends for an English guide. There is a wine country nearby, but Ray says that the best drinks are the sangria.
We share a lot of resources and local suggestions in today’s podcast, but you should also check out Querétaro, the local visitor’s bureau. They are a wealth of information and can help you plan an itinerary based on your time, budget, and interests.
If you’d like to learn how to travel for free using airline miles and hotel points, check out my free 7-day email course.
Getting around Querétaro
The local airport is Querétaro Intercontinental Airport (QRO), which is about a 30-minute drive to the city. Ray says to check flights because it is often cheaper to fly into Mexico City International Airport (MEX), then take a bus to Querétaro.
According to Ray, there’s no need to rent a car while staying in Querétaro. If you really feel the need to rent a car visit Avis, Budget, or Hertz for the best offers.
He also says that the best way to get around is to use Uber.
Places we talked about on the podcast
Here is a map of all of the places we talked about on the podcast episode with Ray Blakney about Querétaro, Mexico. You can zoom into the map and click on each dot to explore the city.
- Red dots = best places to eat in Querétaro, Mexico
- Green dots = best things to do in Querétaro, Mexico
- Yellow dots = best places to stay in Querétaro, Mexico
Who is Ray Blakney?
Ray Blakney is probably like every other award-winning Filipino American entrepreneur who grew up in Turkey and lives in Mexico that you know. He comes from a long line of world travelers (his American father grew up in Rhodesia, and his American grandfather grew up in China) and the bug has never left him. Over the last 12 years, he has built a location-independent lifestyle that has allowed him, his wife, and recently his baby son to travel around the world whenever they want without being tied down by work.
Check out some of Ray’s podcast episodes:
- Learn Spanish with Live Lingua
- 20 Free Online Spanish Courses
- 10 Memory Hacks for Learning a Language in 2021
You can connect with Ray on his website and on Facebook.
Big thanks to today’s podcast partner – Bluffworks
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Stay tuned for our next episode
Listen to the next episode when Megan Renaud of Ottawa River Lifestyle shares the best things to do in Ottawa, Canada. Megan and I talk about eating taffy on the snow at the Winterlude Festival, taking a Rideau Canal cruise, and eating beaver tails. We hope you’ll join us when We Travel There.
What’s your favorite part of Querétaro? Send us a Tweet, let us know in the comment section below, or continue the discussion in our Facebook group!
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While you’re visiting this part of Mexico, spend a couple of days visiting other intriguing cities that are nearby: