PATZCUARO TRAVEL GUIDE
Where to Eat - Click here for price key
Guides and truckers know to stop at Restaurant Camino Real ($--$$) by the Pemex station on the outskirts of Patzcuaro heading toward Uruápan. Nothing fancy but decent food, cheap, and fast.
For more charm right in town, have a meal at El Primer Piso ($$), where two tiny balconies overlook Plaza Vasco de Quiroga (tel. 434/342-0122). It’s open for lunch and dinner, with an interesting menu and several lovely desserts. Closed Tuesdays.
Where to Stay - Click here for price key
Posada de la Basilica (Calle Arciga 6, across from the basilica, tel. 434/342-1108, www.posadalabasilica.com.mx, $$$) is charming and one of Patzcuaro’s first hotels. Its restaurant has slow service but a wonderful view over the town’s red roofs.
Stuff to Do
A must-see on any trip to Patzcuaro is la Biblioteca Gertrudis Bocanegra. This library is graced by a floor-to-ceiling fresco by Juan O’Gorman. A contemporary of Diego Rivera and others of the postwar mural school, O’Gorman spent a year painting the fresco. Dozens of scenes show the geography and history of the region in rich color and intricate detail. A booklet for sale at the library gives key to the mural’s figures in Spanish and English. A few blocks away, Patzcuaro’s oldest building, the former seminary of Saint Nick, houses a small but very interesting mueum ofpre-Hispanic and colonial art and artifacts.
La Casa de los Once Patios, originally a Dominican nunnery, is now a two-story crafts shop. Despite its name, the original 11 patios, it has been reduced to five. They are surrounded with several mall shops crammed with exquisite (and expensive!) examples of lacqueado---lightweight boxes made of cane stalks and orchid essence and painted with 24-karat gold leaf. Other more accessibly priced folk art is found here, too.
Tourist Information at Calle Ahumada 9-B, Centro
Radio Taxi Colibrijes 434/342-2602
When you figure in bus price plus the cost of a taxi from the Morelia bus station to the airport, it's as cheap (or cheaper) for three or more people to travel by taxi. In June of 2008 Taxis Monarca charged 500 pesos from Patzcuaro to Morelia's airport. Very convenient.