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Parque Juárez

A breath of fresh air in a bustling city

“In San Miguel, we say that this is our green lung,” our friend Antonieta explains. “Everybody, young or old, comes to Parque Juárez.” We’ve been exploring the bustling streets of San Miguel de Allende, but at the moment, there’s no city in sight.

 

Parque Juárez is a soft blanket of green among stone facades, a slice of serenity concealed in the joyful fanfare.

Parque Juárez is a soft blanket of green among stone facades, a slice of serenity concealed in the joyful fanfare. On this sunny Saturday afternoon, the people of San Miguel de Allende take a collective respiro.

As we enter the park, a mother sells flowers with her baby strapped across her back.

A young boy blows giant bubbles and smiles at us as we pass by. Children dance across a playground and climb a statue in the shape of a turtle. We learn that it’s been placed there in remembrance of a young boy who died. This was his favorite place in the world.

They say that without Central Park, New Yorkers would go crazy. It doesn’t feel quite the same in San Miguel, where beautiful blooms grace every wall and terrace. Things may have felt a bit different in the mid-1700s, when San Miguel had 30,000 residents to the Big Apple’s 25,000. That was during the height of silver trade from Zacatecas to Mexico City. San Miguel is exactly between them, and became the home of wealthy hacienda owners who plotted out the city’s most magnificent structures—and its significant green spaces.

A great cheer rings through the air from a nearby basketball court. Excited spectators munch on chile-flavored popcorn while sipping Coca-Cola. Artists display their work on benches and in the branches of trees. An older couple presses their noses together, a schoolgirl chats with her boyfriend on the phone, and a man tells stories of his time at war.

Later that day, long after we’ve left El Parque, we wander up a winding road and find ourselves much closer to the clouds. All of San Miguel stretches out before us. At its center we can see Parque Juárez, a tiny patch of jungle that’s as vividly green as the trees that surround us.