The second largest city in Mexico, Guadalajara is home to well over four million people. The city’s origins trace as far back as the mid-16th century having been founded in 1542. Guadalajara is famous for a number of reasons, including its role in numerous wars, its hugely-popular football team and the city’s university which has contributed greatly to its cultural scene. Today Guadalajara is also known for being a thriving hub of business activity, attracting visitors from all over the world. It’s also seen as being far more relaxed than Mexico City, owing to its relative lack of skyscrapers and a wide array of historic buildings. Guadalajara also has a nice climate, with hot summers and mild winters.
Hatchbacks tend to be able to drive adeptly both in the inner city and on the highways. Fuel-efficiency is important too, as there aren’t so many petrol stations outside the city centre.
Driving in Guadalajara
Road Driving Side
Urban Speed Limit
Rural Speed Limit
Motorway Speed Limit
Important things to note
Driving in Guadalajara isn’t as chaotic as it might be expected for a city of its size. However, congested traffic can be exacerbated by buses and other forms of public transport.
The three major highways leading into Guadalajara are Highway 15, Highway 80D and Highway 54D. All three are pretty easy to find.
Some of the roads in the outer suburbs tend to have the odd crack or bump. They can be drive on without problems in summer but wet weather can be problematic.
Highlights & Hotspots
In the Centro HistÒrico district, the most notable landmark is Guadalajara Cathedral. First built in the 16th century and modified in 1854, a look at “The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin” mural is a must-see for anyone visiting the city.
Deep in the western area of the city centre is the Arcos Vallarta, a Romanesque arch which once signalled the entry to Guadalajara. Today, visitors can go to the top and look out over the city, looking at the murals on the trip up.
Football is a much-loved sport here. Chivas play at the Estadio Omnilife while main rivals Atlas play at the Estadio Jalisco. Estudiantes Tecos, who are currently in the second division, play at the Estadio Tres de Marzo.
A major event in the city is the Feria Internacional del Libro, an international book fair which takes place every November. The fair invites authors and publishers from all over the world, while visitors are also welcomed.
Don Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla International Airport is the main airport for Guadalajara, lying six miles south of the city centre. With two passenger terminals, the airport is used for connection flights to the US and major cities in Central and South America.
The airport is located alongside the 44 highway. It goes north onto Highway 23, which has numerous exits turning north towards the city centre.