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Cities Real del Monte (Hidalgo)

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Real del Monte, a pretty town in the mountains about two hours north from Mexico City was declared one of the „pueblos mágicos“. Its streets are narrow and curvy, houses are low and in a way its atmosphere is similar to Guanajuato. Real del Monte was also a mining town, gold and silver found in the surrounding hills were processed in the many „haciendas“ that lay nearby. However, the city had a strong English influence which could be now seen on the architecture as well as on the menu. The local specialty are „pastas“, small baked pastry with meat, beans and other things inside, that come from the English salty pays. You can try it for a scandalously low price (but good quality) in a cozy restaurant “El Portal” on the main square.

Get warm clothes, even if the sun is up it is quite chilly in here.
What here: Walk through the town, let the small streets take you to the city´s hidden corners. Visit the church, „Inglesia del Rosario“, on the main square in front of a well kept park. Shop for gold and silver. Or go down the shaft of the old mine „Mina de Acosta“ that is located below the town, close to the bus parkinglot. The entrance fee are 30 pesos and tours are available from Wednesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Where to stay: Real del Monte gets most visitors on the weekends when people come from Mexico City and Pachuca.

Hotel Plaza de Oro
A small family run hotel in the center. Nothing luxurious but the rooms have a nice touch, there is a central sort of garden and the building is one of the old original houses. The reception however was quite horrible and the receptionist someplace else...but the hotel would be my favorite choice.
Price: 280 – 450 pesos. Avenida Hidalgo 4. Tel: 771 – 797 0067
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Los Portales
Middle sized hotel in a traditional house right on the main square. The rooms have tv and bathroom, the hotel has a parking lot. Even though the facade is very nice, the owners did not use the potential and reconstructed the inside of the hotel in a rather less stylish way. Unfortunately the receptionist was absent so I was not able to see the place well.
Price: 450 – 800 pesos. Main square.

Hotel Paraiso Real
Another middle sized hotel close to the center. The rooms are clean, with new furniture, tv and own bathroom. Some even have balconies. The hotel has a small restaurant downstairs and counts with a parking lot.
Price: 600 – 700 pesos. Iturbide 13. Tel: 771 – 79 702 20, www.hotelparaisoreal.com
How to get here: By car. Get off from Mexico City towards Pachuca on a 35D Highway. Do not drive to the center of Pachuca but turn right direction to Huejutla or Tampico. You will pass Real del Monte on the way. Total time from Mexico City is slightly less than two hours.