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San Miguel de Allende named world’s top city

Oaxaca was named sixth in Travel + Leisure magazine's annual rankings

San Miguel de Allende has been named the world’s best city with Oaxaca close behind in sixth place in annual rankings by readers of Travel + Leisure magazine.


“There’s a lot to love about San Miguel,” the magazine said in announcing the winners, which readers select based on sights and landmarks, culture, food, friendliness, shopping and value.

The colonial city in the state of Guanajuato offers temperate weather year-round, Travel + Leisure wrote, meaning there is no bad time to visit.

A reader of the magazine described San Miguel as “one of the most authentic, creative and cost-effective destinations we’ve visited. Over the years we’ve discovered more great restaurants and activities, but the town still maintains its Mexican heritage, culture and charm.”

San Miguel also boasts Mexico’s top hotels: the Rosewood and the Hotel Matilda were recognized as the best hotels in Mexico.

Two other Mexican destinations have been accorded international recognition this year. The New York Times put Tijuana in Baja California and Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca, on its list of the top places to visit in 2017.

Mexico News Daily

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  • This is good. It keeps the Gringos going to San Miguel and not to where I am. As for Oaxaca, the garbage has been piling up there on the streets for about a week now due to civil unrest, a common event in that fair city.

    • Hailey Mannering

      FU fascist.

    • IrisB

      I agree – I am a gringo living in Mexico but I refuse to live in a city where gringos gather to protect themselves from the “outsiders” – in this case, the Mexicans! (Recently, a Canadian who lives there said to me that “San Miguel used to be a nice city but now it is going to hell because all the Mexicans think they can visit there whenever they want” – Shame on you, Travel and Leisure!!!!

      • MaryAnn

        I agree completely; “best” by whose standards? Travel and Leisure doesn’t have a clue about authenticity.
        The moneyed expats have created their own authenticity and eliminated everything genuinely Mexican. None of them have been out of their comfort zone to see the real Mexico.

  • Al Cantwell

    And Sayulita is a pueblo magico. BFD. These rankings/surveys (whatever they are) are completely meaningless.

  • rob smith

    Ah San Miguel de Allende. I hope you like being serenaded by a million
    dogs barking all night long. They are encouraged by the nightly
    explosive sounds of loud fireworks that the locals set off “to chase
    away evil spirits”

  • gypsyken

    Which city is “best,” is, of course, entirely a matter of personal opinion, but I preferred San Antonio Tlayacapan (part of Chapala, Jalisco, which also includes Ajijic) to San Miguel, because it is less isolated, with the Guadalajara airport only half an hour away.

  • AgesOfReason

    Have not seen every city in the world, but having been to San Miguel I can certainly attest to the fact that it is indeed spectacular, can’t wait to return.

  • lang_eddy

    San Miguel is indeed a beautiful place to retire, or even to visit, but I still prefer to be close to the ocean. I have been coming to Mexico for many years, and I am very content to stay in Guayabitos. Very Mexican, very warm people, and the price is right. Each to his or her own. Anywhere one goes in Mexico, is ok by me. Next to Canada, Mexico is wonderful. Can’t wait to return home (Guayabitos) for the winter.

    • TioDon

      I’ve been lucky enough to live on the ocean for most of my life. I’m in Playa del Carmen now. I went to SMA for a week and asked my guide “where’s the beach?” She laughed….if it had a beach I’d move there…

      • Steve Galat

        I live in Puerto Aventuras now, near you. But when I was in San Miguel de Allende years ago, we’d take a bus north for 20 minutes to a fabulous Hot Thermal Spring Resort for the afternoon. It was called “Taboada.” I wonder how it is today?

        • TioDon

          I don’t know. I’ve a friend that is nagging……I mean, asking me, to go to SMA for a long weekend. Maybe we’ll check it out….I’ll let you know, thanks for the tip.

          • Steve Galat

            Great! I was there so long ago we took a TRAIN with old US Pullman Sleepers from Nuevo Laredo, 7 PM, arriving SMA at noon. I won’t return….too ‘developed’ now, like Antigua, Guatemala. I intend, though, to visit Guanajuato. Am going to Chiapas late September, “Argovia Hacienda” on the Coffee Route. Am finally finished with Europe etc

  • Sandie Becker Brown

    I love how under the article there are 2 news stories about the safety in san miguel! Im totally freaked about it.Granted,its nothing compared to the states,but its a total scare for having seen really nothing of this types of crimes here.i absolutely adore s.m., just pay more attention now

    • Pesobill

      What “states” are you referring to? If you mean the USA you’re nuts as the murder rate in Mexico is nearly 5 times the USA and climbing.. Keep drinking your Kool Aid…

      • Sandie Becker Brown

        I was talking about San Miguel. Not the whole country

  • Vaughn Burckard

    I lived in PV for many years, and now Ajijic, or ‘God’s Waiting Room’ as some say. San Miguel was the least friendly place I’ve ever visited, after Newark, NJ. The gringos in Ajijc are no where near as friendly as PV, but SMA??? Miserable.

  • Karen Walker

    I went there for a month, one weekend.

  • Pesobill

    I’ve traveled extensively to many countries and seen many beautiful cities. It is laughable for a magazine to say the San Miguel de Allende is the “best city”. Really? Been there and to be honest it was nothing special. Perhaps they were paid for this sponsorship? Something smacks of pure crazy as SMA would not be in my top 50 cities… Perhaps the Mexican mental paralysis set in early for the travel writers? Won’t read that rag again..

  • Russell Vincent

    I enjoy Mexico News Daily as you tell lt like it is, the good and the bad. Kinda refreshing when our U.S. media is so agenda driven.