After driving for more than 3 hours, I was very excited to see Carlos Santana on the welcoming "Autlan" sign at the entrance of the town. This town of 60,000 people happens to be the birthplace of legendary musician, Carlos Santana. Comparing to the many tiny villages we passed by on the way here, Autlán has everything - a beautiful mural leads to the church on top of the hill, a historical city hall, a rodeo ring, a museum, a university, Santana Plaza, night markets, and countless shops all over the town.
The first we did was hiking up the hill in the morning. Along the way, we saw a donkey, chickens, roosters, and several dogs. One dog followed us for a while. There were many Giant Cactus trees. When we reached the top of the hill, we were able to see the entire town. There is a church on top of the hill. I was told it will be all decorated and looking festive in the next few weeks for Christmas although it looked a bit run down at the moment.
The City Hall is quite impressive. It says 1810 on the building, so I assume it's over 200 years old. I went inside and looked around. It has a lot of offices and people applying for passports, paying bills, applying for marriage licenses, etc. It's a lot bigger than El Cerrito for sure.
Plaza De Toros Alberto Balderas is the rodeo ring. Although my friend told me that they no longer practice traditional bullfight, inside of the plaza has many paintings and photographs past bullfights and matadors. I think some traditions are better left in the past. I was told that rodeo is the main sport at the Plaza these days.
I was quite surprised to see many point of interests in this town since there was very little information I could find on the internet. This town is definitely worth a visit.