With its gorgeous cobbled streets and beautiful architecture, Taxco is definitely worth exploring. This cute little town is exceptionally hilly and surrounded by mountains, so be prepared for stunning views from one of the many rooftop terraces. Don’t worry if hill walking isn’t your thing, there are plenty of white WV beetles winding up and down at every turn – just lookout when you’re crossing the road!
Pre-Hispanic civilisation used to mainly use metals for religious rituals but then in 1522 the Spaniards invaded. They sent Hernan Cortes in search of tin to mix with copper to make cannons. When they discovered the ‘tin’ was a precious metal, they returned to settle and exploited the silver from the area. They eventually fled Taxco after depleting the silver veins.
It wasn’t until 200 years later when Jose’ de La Borda came to the town with his mining brothers and accidentally discovered the regions richest silver veins. He provided the city with infrastructure, introduced new techniques for draining and repairing the mines and allegedly treated his indigenous workers better than most colonial mines.
With most of the silver gone, Taxco became a quiet town until William Spratling, an American artist arrived in the 1920s. He opened a silver workshop basing his designs on Pre-Hispanic art and trained the local artisans. This enhanced jewellery production in the area and tourism began to flourish. Silver jewellery making became a great source of income for local artisans and they still live off trade and manufacture of silver today.
Silver Jewellery Workshop:
Where better to learn to make silver jewellery than in Taxco? Gustavo was born in Taxco and has over 34 years of experience in the silver industry. He began working as a ‘fox’ (Silversmith's assistant) at just 13 years old so he truly is an expert! I absolutely loved this experience and it was a great opportunity to practise speaking Spanish, although his lovely daughter was also on hand to translate. I couldn’t recommend this workshop enough! Keep your eyes peeled as we plan to make some bespoke Higgler rings with Gustavo in the future.
Church of Santa Prisca de Taxco:
This church is in the main square (Zócalo) and is over 250 years old. Legend has it, Don José de la Borda was riding in this area when his horse stumbled which dislodged a stone and exposed the precious metal. He later had this church built as a gift to Taxco.
Jumiles, also known as 'stink bugs' are a delicacy in Taxco. With a taste of mint, cinnamon or iodine these little insects can be eaten dead or alive. For an authentic Taxco experience why not try them cooked with Serrano peppers, onion and lime (lemon in Mexico) or blending into a sauce with meat and chili.
Casa Siera Alta
This place was adorable! Be prepared for a little effort getting your bags up the many steps but after that, this place is bliss. The room is very spacious with its own little balcony and it even had a gorgeous rooftop terrace to enjoy too. It’s just around the corner from the main square.
Hotel Los Arcos
Built in 1572, this place is a little slice of heaven. You can enjoy its amazing architecture and travel through arches leading to a Spanish courtyard. They have a rooftop terrace to take in the views and the staff and onsite restaurant come highly commended.