Guanajuato, Mexico

Guanajuato is the capital of the state  that bears its name and  is one of Mexico´s most well preserved colonial cities. Rich in both history and culture, Guanajuato became a Unesco World Heritage site in 1988 and is well  known for its museums, university, colonial architecture and the hospitality of it´s people. The city also has a tradition of hosting musical, theatrical and dance events such as the Cerventino Festival. Since its inception  in 1972, this festival has become the most important artistic and cultural event in both Mexico and Latin America, in addition to , one of four major events of its kind in the world.

One of the most important institutions of higher learning in Mexico is the University of Guanajuato in the city of Guanajuato. It was founded in 1792 by the society of Jesuits and authorized by King Felipe the 5th of Spain. After a series of transformations it eventually became a state university  and was finally named the University of Guanajuato in 1945. Today the university has over 30,000 students and 153 academic programs; including 13 doctorates, 39 master´s programs as well as 65 Bachelor´s degrees and does more scientific research than any other institute of higher learning in the state.

Guanajuato is home to several unique museums a few of which are the former home of famous artist Diego Rivera which has been converted into a museum, a museum of mummies, the Cerventino museum and the Alhondiga Museum. During the Mexican war of Independance in 1810, the Alhondiga was converted to a fortress from what had been a warehouse for storing grain by Spanish loyalist who locked themselves inside to fight the Mexican rebels led by Father Hildago. The rebels won the battle when a miner known as El Pipilla crawled to the fortress with a large flat stone on his back for protection and burned down its wooden door. Before the war was over, however, the Spanish recaptured the Alhondiga along with 4 of its revolutionary heroes including Father Hildago,  beheaded all four and mounted their heads on stakes at all four corners of the Alhondiga.

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