During my August 2014 trip to Guanajuato, I decided to take a daytrip to Irapuato. Irapuato is located a little more than an hour away from Guanajuato. I was interested in seeing Irapuato because it appeared to have an interesting downtown area with many churches, and…..I like churches. However, Irapuato isn’t mentioned in either my Lonely Planet Mexico guide, or the Rough Guide to Mexico, so I was on my own. My research consisted mostly of looking at Google Maps, zooming in on the city from above and then going to street view to see what I could find. I then noted churches, landmarks, and the bus station on a map I created. It looked pretty interesting!
If you decide to visit Irapuato, here’s the map of some of the sights in the Centro. You can see where they are in relation to the bus station.
To get to Irapuato, I headed to the Guanajuato bus station. I then caught the next bus to Irapuato, which happened to be a Primera Plus bus for 64 pesos (around $5 US). The ride along the highway was punctuated by many strawberry stands (fresas), which are grown in the area.
Exiting the Irapuato bus station, I crossed the highway via a pedestrian bridge. That left me inside a mercado, which I then navigated through to the streets outside. A few blocks away lay the central historic district. The main square is anchored by two churches — the Irapuato Cathedral, and the Church of San Jose.
Just a block away are two more churches sitting side by side — the Convent of San Francisco, and the Church of the Third Order.
The interior of the Convent of San Francisco was quite nice, with a bit of gold gilding on the walls and columns.
Across the street lies another plaza, with two churches, a government building, and some public art including an interesting mosaic showing the founding of Irapuato.
A pedestrian walkway starts on the right side of the Hospitalito church (as you face it), and includes many restaurants. Walking this way, and then going right at the end will bring you back to the main plaza. In addition to the churches and fountains, there’s some nice colonial style buildings and arcades around the plaza.
Here are some more photos of the two churches on the plaza, showing the fountains..
I enjoyed my time in Irapuato. When I was ready to leave, I returned to the bus station and caught the next bus back to Guanajuato.