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Colima is the capital of Colima state in Mexico. This city is not very touristy. It has a fairly renowned university that conducts a lot of international exchange.


Due to its great culture that has five visible centuries of folklore, customs, gastronomy and traditions, it was named American Capital of Culture in 2014. It is also the third oldest city in Mexico (and on the American continental shelf), having been founded in 1523.


Colima has a tropical savanna climate, with consistently high temperatures and extremely dry conditions from November to May followed by heavy rainfall from June to October. The city is sometimes affected by hurricanes, which can bring up to 140 millimetres (5.5 in) of rain per day and lengthy periods of heavy rain.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Colima is linked to Guadalajara by a four-lane toll highway (Highway 54D).

By bus[edit]

There are two bus terminals:

  • Terminal de Transportes de Colima goes to major destinations across the state and the country, and
  • a rural bus terminal that goes to the nearest towns.

By plane[edit]

  • 1 Colima Airport (CLQ  IATA) (15 km north, outside the city). From Tijuana with Volaris. To get to the downtown your only option is a taxi, which will cost US$20. Lic. Miguel de la Madrid Airport (Q2233156) on Wikidata Colima Airport on Wikipedia

You could also fly to Guadalajara (GDL IATA), which is Mexico's second largest city, and where there are more flight options. From there you could take a bus (US$25), which will take 3 hours to get to Colima bus station and from there to the down town a cab will charge you US$2-3.

Get around[edit]

Map of Colima

By bus[edit]

A complete network of buses will allow you to circulate in the city. There is no map of the lines: you will have to stop the first bus that passes by with a wave of your hand, and ask the driver how to get to your destination.

Another bus station (Terminal Rojo) will allow you to go to the small towns around Colima.

By taxi[edit]

Taxis are common in the city. Prices tend to go up at the sight of a foreigner.


  • Plaza Principal - Has a small garden in its center with a few fountains. Around the square is the cathedral, the Palacio de Gobierno, and the tourist office.
Jardín Libertad
  • The historic center of the city is a square called Jardín Libertad (Liberty Garden). It consists of a kiosk in the center, brought from Belgium in 1891, surrounded by palms and leafy trees and bushes. It often hosts live music on weekends.
  • 1 Regional History Museum of Colima (Museo Regional de Historia de Colima), Portal Morelos 1 (at the Plaza Principal). The ground floor has a number of archeological pieces along with a replica of a shaft tomb, which is characteristic of the region. It recreates the burial of several peoples along with their belongings and Mexican hairless dogs (Xolos), which were thought to be guides to the next world. The upper floor contains documents and other objects which narrates the history of the state from the Conquest to the Mexican Revolution. (Q5493986) on Wikidata
  • The Basílica Menor Catedral de Colima was built in 1894, but since then it has been renovated various times, often due to earthquake damage. The style is Neoclassical with two towers at the front and a dome. The interior is sparse.
Palacio de Gobierno
  • The former Palacio de Gobierno (state government palace) is next to the cathedral. It is a two-story buildings in French Neoclassical design. It was finished in 1904 and designed by Lucio Urbe, who also did the cathedral. The façade contains a bell, which is a replica of the one Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla rang in Dolores Hidalgo and a clock brought over from Germany.
  • Parque de la Piedra Lisa. This park offers a science museum, called the Xoloescuintle, a playground and several recreational areas, the main attraction is a volcanic stone called la piedra lisa that has the form of a slide and the legend says that once you slide on it you will always come back. The stone comes from the volcano 32 km away from the city, the park was built around this monolithic slide rock.
  • A short distance from Jardín Libertad is Jardín Hidalgo, dedicated to Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla. This square contains an equatorial sundial which is exact. It was designed by Julio Mendoza and contains explanations in several languages.
  • The Temple of San Felipe de Jesús, beside Jardín Hidalgo. The main altar of this church contains six niches, with a crucifix at the top. The Del Carmen Chapel is next to it, which is a simple building that contains the image of Our Lady of Mount Carmel with the Infant Jesus in her arms.
  • The Pinacoteca Universitaria Alfonso Michel, beside Jardín Hidalgo, which is a museum dedicated to the history of art in Colima. It is dedicated to Colima artist Alfonso Michel who is considered the best of the state from the 20th century, and who focused on cubist and impressionist painting. The building is traditional for the city with its corridors lined by arches. Along with its permanent collection, the museum hosts exhibitions by local artists.
  • The Conjunto de la Secretaría de Cultura (Secretary of Culture Complex) is a series of buildings around a central plaza that contains a Juan Soriano sculpture by the name of "El Toro." The three main buildings are the Edificio de Talleres which is for workshops on various artistic disciplines, the Casa de la Cultura Alfonso Michel or Edificio Central, which hosts various exhibitions along with a permanent collection of works by Alfonso Michel and Museo de las Culturas de Occidente María Ahumada de Gómez (María Ahumada de Gómez Museum of Western Cultures. The Ahumada Museum has a large collection of archeological pieces from the region. It divides into two areas. The ground floor is dedicated to the history of the state divided into phases. The upper floor is dedicated to the various pre-Hispanic culture of the area showing various aspects of their lives such as work, clothing, architecture, religion and art.
  • The Palacio Legislativa y de Justicia (Legislative and Justice Palace) is the work of architects Xavier Yarto and Alberto Yarza. It is a modern design. Its interior contains a mural entitled "La Universialidad de la Justicia" by Gabriel Portillo del Toro.
  • The Museo Universitario de Artes Populares María Teresa Pomar is not only dedicated to the region's handicrafts and folk art, it also has exhibitions related to the area's popular festivals and traditions. The collection includes festival costumes, toys, masks, cooking utensils, metal miniatures, wood objects, pottery and fiber crafts.
  • La Campana is an archeological site about fifteen minutes outside of the city and is distinguished by a mound in the shape of a bell, which gives it the name. The site covers an area of about fifty hectares with only one percent explored. The site is also known for a construction style which uses rounded river stones and numerous burials.
  • El Chanal reached its height between 1000 and 1400 AD over an area of 120 hectares. The archeological has evidence of the extensive use of obsidian and metals such as copper and gold. Constructions at the site include a Mesoamerican ballcourt, the Plaza of the Altars, the Plaza of Day and Night and the Plaza of Time. Stairwells on pyramid bases often have glyphs similar to those found in central Mexico which may have a calendar function.


  • Parque Regional Metropolitano - Park offering a few activities including a swimming pool, quad and pedal boat tours.


The main pedestrian street, Andador Constitución, retains traditional businesses such as the Joven Don Manuelito ice cream shop, which has been there since 1944. On the street, you can see street musicians and artists offering to paint or draw landscapes and portraits. At the end of this street, there is a large handcrafts store funded by a government agency called DIF, which focuses on crafts from the state such as indigenous clothing and ceramic figures, especially those of the Mexican hairless dog also known as the Xoloizcuintle or Xolo.

  • The park behind the cathedral is Jardin Gregorio Torres Quintero, which contains mango, tabachin (Caesalpinia mexicana) and palm trees along with stands selling handcrafts, novelties and food.


In restaurants in the city, you can try popular dishes such as atole with milk, white pozole, white menudo, tatamado, pipián mole, birria and sopes.


The Plaza Principal has a few places where you can try the big pints of micheladas, a mix of beer, spices, lemon and salt.

Stands in the city sell a local drink called the "bate" which is thick and somewhat gray in color, made from a toasted seed called chan or chía along with honey or piloncillo. Another traditional drink sold on streets and parks is called "tuba." It is made from the flower of a type of palm tree, with apple, cucumber and peanut bits added.


  • Hacienda del Gobernador (downtown). The ancient house of the governor Gildardo Gómez is now transformed into this boutique hotel. It has an excellent restaurant and a large, varied wine cellar.
  • Hotel San Cristobal, No. 98 Calle Reforma, +52 312 312 0515. No luxury but very clean. M$110 per room with shared toilet and shower, M$160 with shower and toilet..

You can also sleep downtown in the Hotel Ceballos (Best Western) or Hotel America.

Just out of the downtown you find the hotel Maria Isabel and at the edge of town is a Fiesta Inn.

Go next[edit]

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