I don’t make this stuff up.
Mexico`s Secretariat of Tourism has formally recognized the place of Magic in the creation of towns through the Programa Pueblos Mágicos (“Magical Villages Programme”). It has identified a series of towns around the country that offer visitors a “magical” experience – by reason of their natural beauty, cultural riches, or historical relevance.
A “Magical Village” is a place with symbolism, legends, history, important events, day-to-day life – in other words, “magic” in its social and cultural manifestations, with great opportunities for tourism. The programme was launched in 2001 and, by 2007, a total of 32 towns and villages in 24 different states had been awarded the title pueblo mágico.
|2||Huasca de Ocampo||Hidalgo||2001|
|3||Real de Catorce||San Luis Potosí||2001|
|11||San Miguel de Allende||Guanajuato||2002|
|15||San Cristóbal de las Casas||Chiapas||2003|
|16||Real del Monte||Hidalgo||2004|
|17||Parras de la Fuente||Coahuila||2004|
|18||Valle de Bravo||México||2005|
|26||Real de Asientos||Aguascalientes||2006|
|29||Todos Santos||Baja California Sur||2006|
|33||Capulalpam de Mendez||Oaxaca||2008|
|34||San Sebastian del Oeste||Jalisco||2008|
As further proof, this picture is from Pátzcuaro. Pátzcuaro is just one of the thirty three San Miguel wannabe Pueblos. Unlike San Miguel – the Grandmother of all Pueblos Mágicos, wannabe Pueblos use their designation as a Pueblo Mágico. In this case it is being used to get expats to buy furniture in their Pueblo Mágico tienda.
But Magic is never that easy. Muchwork goes into creating a Magical Village. There has to be something to anchor magic and be reproductible on coasters, T shirts and coffee cups. San Miguel uses the Parroquia (Magic Kingdom) to anchor its magic. Pátzcuaro has created a Village Wizard to anchor its Mágico in the Zocalo.
The Wizard of Pátzcuaro is much like the Trevi Fountains in Rome. The Wizard of Pátzcuaro grants wishes for a few coins and can fix torn leather garments for a prayer or two. He is illuminated at night and his wand can be moved as part of the laser show each night at 9 and 10 pm. But get there early as the Zocalo fills up with tourist and their pockets full of change and many, many wishes for a stock market recovery.
Another Pueblo Mágico is Bernal. Bernal has created a wonderful Magic Mountain to anchor its Magic.
Because Bernal is a recent (2005) Pueblo Mágico, it has not developed all the facilities that San Miguel (2002) has developed. There are no cable cars yet up the Magic Mountain nor rides through the Magic Mountain. The best they have come up with is hiking the Magic Mountain.
Instead, their efforts have focused on Magical Benches. Sit on a Magical Bench and you will soon feel the magic of cold metal.
There is a Wizard of Bernal wizard, however, he is alive. I followed him for one hour and he doesn’t seem to do much. He spends a lot of time going in and or of the church for some reason.
Another new attraction in Bernal is the Magic Caves. They are scary rides.
Another Pueblo Mágico is Dolores Hidalgo. Dolores Hidalgo works its magic through Magic Pottery and Art. The streets of Dolores Hidalgo are littered with Pottery. Pots, bowls, toilets, sinks, frogs, small animals, fountains, lizards are left in the street for the people. Step over a small ceramic Toad and your life changes. Here for a few pesos you can bring the Magic home and fill your home with the Magic of a Lucky Frog or any manner of dog. You can fill every room in your house with Magic.
See this post for more details of the Magic Art of Dolores Hidalgo