3 days in a Colonial City

Trip Start Jul 04, 2010
Trip End May 10, 2011

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Where I stayed

Flag of Mexico  , Michoacán,
Thursday, November 4, 2010

Nov 4, 5, 6

3 Days in Morelia

Morelia is the Capital of Michoacan State who's center is a well preserved colonial gem founded in 1537. Even though we rode only two days in a row after our 8 day break in Patzcuaro , we decided to relax here for awhile and take care of things like our wash and blog posts and take in the sights.

Michelle Skyped with Tanta Ria, in Holland, who showed all her latest paintings. It is really nice to be able to maintain such personal contact while on the road.

We walked over to the Plaza de Armas, a small park area next to the main cathedral, and discovered work crews removing the last of the Dia de los Muertos displays. Guess it is time to change to Christmas themes. We cut through the 270 year old Cathedral. It is a huge building but nothing inside caught our imaginations and we quickly continued on. The tourist information office said the butterfly sanctuaries down the road would be open on the 20th or the 26th and provided a good map of the area but had only one pamphlet in English. They were able to direct us to a 'good’ bicycle shop. We thought we could pick the brains of the guys at the bike shop for route suggestions as we make our way east.

On the second day, we discovered the Trico Restaurant that not only has a great menu, but also the best view of the Cathedral from its second floor balcony. We dropped off Michelle’s bike for a tune up and got great advice on the best way to cycle. We decided highway 15 through the National Park area would be most scenic but have the most hills and least amount of services. There would be no hotels until almost to Ciudad Hildago but we could pitch the tent almost anywhere and the many small villages could provide all the food and water we would need. It was good to have that settled.

Then we hopped on a tourist bus for a tour of the city. They wanted 10 people before they would do English translations but we decided to go anyway. We were a bit surprised that the bus drove passed many historic building such as ex-convents, the old theater, Governor’s palace, and even the cathedral without a stop. We did get 10 minutes to see the Santuario de Guadalupe (completed in 1716). We followed the group inside and were amazed to find a gaudy and ornate interior, the prettiest we have seen in Mexico. The tour ended at the candy factory that was another separate tour. We decided to skip that and made our way back to town, stopping briefly to poke our head into the Governor’s Palace with most of its interior walls cover with murals depicting scenes from the revolution. They were not as nicely done as some we have seen, they made up for that with quantity!

The 3rd night in our hotel, we woke about 3AM to an awful stench in our room. Michelle thought it smelled like the inside of an outhouse (like your nose near the receiving end). Dave compared it to a garbage dump. It any case, it was horrible. The front desk could not explain but assured us it was from outside. Dave walked outside and confirmed the odor was everywhere and we would not be able to escape. We googled and discovered they have a paper mill that sometimes will smell the place up. But we doubt that it could have been that. It was much worse than any paper factory we’ve smelled. By morning, the smell was gone, only to return the next night. We did ask a few people we ran across but all seemed to not have noticed, or never heard of it!!??

Dave picked Michelle’s bike up from the shop and rode to the grocery store at the edge of town. It seemed to shift great until he got to a hill and it would not drop down to granny gear! They had done the tune up before installing the new handlebar wrap. And the wrap in the package was so long, they could double wrap the bar for a nice big soft grip. Unfortunately, the gordo wrap now interfered with the shifter, blocking it from moving into the proper position. Dave immediately took the bike back to the shop and insisted they re-wrap the bar correctly. They said to leave the bike and it would be ready on Monday. We planned to go the next morning (Sunday) and needed it done now. They explained it was not possible since the mechanic was already gone until Monday. None of the three guys manning the shop were willing to do the 10 minute job. Dave made them call the shop owner’s son Julio (who had given us the great route advice.) Julio agreed to send someone over from the other shop within an hour to do the job. Dave would have done the job himself, if necessary, and it would have been quicker, but he really wanted the guy who made the mistake to fix it.
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Garan on

What is the name of a bike shop

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