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Opinion of Morelia


catbird
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Hi Catbird...I lived in Ajijic for about five years (1999-2004) and still visit occasionally.  I have lived in Morelia for a total of 8 or 9 years, with a break when I lived for 8 years in Mexico City.  I've been back in Morelia for exactly a year.  Morelia is home for me.

Morelia bears absolutely NO resemblance to Lake Chapala--except that as you mentioned, the weather is similar.  It's generally cooler here than there, and can be quite chilly in the winter.  Our altitude above sea level is 6400 feet; Lakeside is at 5200 feet.  

Morelia is a colonial city of 1.2 million people; the English-speaking expatriate community is approximately 300 to 400 people.  The city is extremely cultured, with at least 6 major universities, a symphony orchestra, a chamber orchestra, frequent festivals of importance, including the Morelia international film festival in October-November (considered to be the best film festival in Mexico), the international music festival during the last two weeks of November (concerts range from popular music to classical music, many are free to the public), plus annual jazz, organ, classical dance, and other annual festivals.  

There is no large body of water close to Morelia--Lake Pátzcuaro is about an hour away.  We have a small international airport 45 minutes to an hour northeast of the city.  We have a long-distance bus terminal about 15 minutes from Morelia's Centro Histórico.  We have excellent taxi service and good Uber service.  

There is no organized community of English-speaking foreigners, no animal rescue group of foreigners (that I am aware of), no ladies' lunch groups, no little theatre (although we have two theatres that often have traveling companies of concerts, dance performances, and Spanish-language plays), no 'bar scene' for foreigners, no restaurants oriented to foreigners.  Really, nothing in Morelia is directed to a foreign community.  There is quite a bit of national tourism here, and some foreign tourism---but nothing like the level one sees at Lakeside. 

We treasure and preserve our history, including our culinary traditions.  There is a large indigenous presence here, primarily the Pur'epecha community, whose presence is crucial to our ways of thinking and believing.  

Morelia's Centro Histórico is considered to be the most beautiful in all of Mexico.  Our buildings here are made predominately of cantera stone blocks and date to the mid-1500s.  This is not the colorful tourist-oriented town that, for example, is Ajijic.  We are typically Mexican: conservative and relatively formal in dress, building exteriors, etc.  On the other hand, there are many historical families here, many intellectuals, and quite a bit of non-conservative thinking, music, and art.  We have a number of fine museums and many, many historical buildings in the city.  

Unfortunately, the level of narcoviolencia in and around Morelia is substantially higher than that at Lakeside.

Unlike the Lake Chapala area, we in Morelia are very little influenced by foreign ideas of what central Mexico is like.  

If you have more questions, please ask.  

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1 hour ago, More Liana said:

Hi Catbird...I lived in Ajijic for about five years (1999-2004) and still visit occasionally.  I have lived in Morelia for a total of 8 or 9 years, with a break when I lived for 8 years in Mexico City.  I've been back in Morelia for exactly a year.  Morelia is home for me.

Morelia bears absolutely NO resemblance to Lake Chapala--except that as you mentioned, the weather is similar.  It's generally cooler here than there, and can be quite chilly in the winter.  Our altitude above sea level is 6400 feet; Lakeside is at 5200 feet.  

Morelia is a colonial city of 1.2 million people; the English-speaking expatriate community is approximately 300 to 400 people.  The city is extremely cultured, with at least 6 major universities, a symphony orchestra, a chamber orchestra, frequent festivals of importance, including the Morelia international film festival in October-November (considered to be the best film festival in Mexico), the international music festival during the last two weeks of November (concerts range from popular music to classical music, many are free to the public), plus annual jazz, organ, classical dance, and other annual festivals.  

There is no large body of water close to Morelia--Lake Pátzcuaro is about an hour away.  We have a small international airport 45 minutes to an hour northeast of the city.  We have a long-distance bus terminal about 15 minutes from Morelia's Centro Histórico.  We have excellent taxi service and good Uber service.  

There is no organized community of English-speaking foreigners, no animal rescue group of foreigners (that I am aware of), no ladies' lunch groups, no little theatre (although we have two theatres that often have traveling companies of concerts, dance performances, and Spanish-language plays), no 'bar scene' for foreigners, no restaurants oriented to foreigners.  Really, nothing in Morelia is directed to a foreign community.  There is quite a bit of national tourism here, and some foreign tourism---but nothing like the level one sees at Lakeside. 

We treasure and preserve our history, including our culinary traditions.  There is a large indigenous presence here, primarily the Pur'epecha community, whose presence is crucial to our ways of thinking and believing.  

Morelia's Centro Histórico is considered to be the most beautiful in all of Mexico.  Our buildings here are made predominately of cantera stone blocks and date to the mid-1500s.  This is not the colorful tourist-oriented town that, for example, is Ajijic.  We are typically Mexican: conservative and relatively formal in dress, building exteriors, etc.  On the other hand, there are many historical families here, many intellectuals, and quite a bit of non-conservative thinking, music, and art.  We have a number of fine museums and many, many historical buildings in the city.  

Unfortunately, the level of narcoviolencia in and around Morelia is substantially higher than that at Lakeside.

Unlike the Lake Chapala area, we in Morelia are very little influenced by foreign ideas of what central Mexico is like.  

If you have more questions, please ask.  

Can you compare Morelia and Queretaro? Especially Centro Historico. 

 

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We love visiting Morelia and nearby Patzcuaro.  The surround area is mountainous and very beautiful and has some great moto riding.  It is a great walking and foodie town.

I just wish Morelia would do something about all the graffiti blighting it's many beautiful historic buildings.  It is a jarring contrast to the generally clean and well kept condition, far cleaner better kept than Ajijic.

 

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On 2/18/2020 at 4:02 PM, AlanMexicali said:

The climate is not very similar. Guadalajara and much of the highland surrounding it is semi-arid. [a very large area ] [ warm and dry ]. Morelia and the surrounding area is sub-tropical highland. [ warm and moist ]

AlanMexicali, I have lived in Ajijic (4 years) and Guadalajara (3 years) and know that those areas are warmer than Morelia, but not necessarily dry.  During the lead-up to the rainy season, the humidity is very low and the temperatures are often in the 90sF.  The rainy season at Lakeside and in Guadalajara is very similar to the rainy season in Morelia: rain (sometimes heavy) during the late afternoons or evenings, dry during most days. 

I have lived in Morelia for 8-9 years and do not find the city warm and moist.  It's normally cooler than the Guadalajara area due to the higher altitude here and is very dry beginning about now--with constantly lowering humidity, just as in Lakeside and Guadalajara--until the rains start in mid-to-late May.  During the lead-up to the rainy season, Morelia can have temperatures no higher than the mid-80sF.  During the summer rainy season, the rain comes in the afternoons or evenings and otherwise the humidity is still no higher than Guadalajara's--or, as the OP requested, than that at Lakeside.

Have you lived in these two areas?  

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Love Morelia.  Word of caution: downtown streets have steel curbs with sharp edges which will do serious damage if accidentally hit. We lost a tire on our last visit. Thankfully Costco was open on Sunday.

When it happened, the police allowed us to change the tire in what would be illegal parking. Very clean and well run city. It should be a "Ciudad Magico"

Last two visits we stayed Hotel Historia which is 1/2 block from the plaza and they accept dogs. Wonderful hotel with a beautiful roof terrace

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18 hours ago, ea93105 said:

Love Morelia.  Word of caution: downtown streets have steel curbs with sharp edges which will do serious damage if accidentally hit. We lost a tire on our last visit. Thankfully Costco was open on Sunday.

When it happened, the police allowed us to change the tire in what would be illegal parking. Very clean and well run city. It should be a "Ciudad Magico"

Last two visits we stayed Hotel Historia which is 1/2 block from the plaza and they accept dogs. Wonderful hotel with a beautiful roof terrace

UNESCO named Morelia a World Heritage site in 1991.  We're very proud of that designation!   https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/585/

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 2/18/2020 at 4:02 PM, AlanMexicali said:

The climate is not very similar. Guadalajara and much of the highland surrounding it is semi-arid. [a very large area ] [ warm and dry ]. Morelia and the surrounding area is sub-tropical highland. [ warm and moist ]

Are you confusing Morelia with Merida which is on the tip of the Yucatan peninsula and tropical and humid? 

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