Hello Lagom Lifer!
On my day 2 of my solo travel to Leon, I learned more about the city’s history and I explored downtown a bit further.
I woke up early in the morning to get the most of the day. I had breakfast at the hostel ‘El Armario’, where I stayed in. My breakfast was comprised of a banana, bread and a cup of coffee. After having breakfast, I read a little bit and then I reviewed the schedule of the places to visit that day.
The first place on the list was the Cathedral Basilica of Our Lady of the Light. The construction of the cathedral begun back in 1764 by the jesuits and revamped by Luis Long in s. XIX, giving its current look. Its architecture style is neoclassical and it’s very woth a visit, even if you’re not catholic. I also visited the Museum of Holy Art, which is inside of the cathedral. The entrance to the museum is on Hidalgo Street.
After visiting Leon’s Cathedral, I headed to the House of Culture Diego Rivera. There were two expositions, one called “Glitch” and the other one was ‘Señal perdida / señal recuperada‘ (lost signed / recovered signed) by Ivan Puig. The latter totally caught my eye, there is a round board with cables plugged to it and a small hand is going around and touching a metal coin-like things, then you go into a dark pitch room and there are lights which turn on as the small hand touches the coin-like metal thing on the round board.
The next place on the list was the Museum of Leonese Identities. The building was used first as a poorhouse until June 1878. Then Herculano Ramirez perform adaptations to the building and it became the city’s jail. The jail opened up on the 27th of October 1902 and it was shut down on 30th of June 1986, when the inmates were transferred to a new jail outside of the city. In 1994, the State Library ‘Wigberto Jimenez Moreno’ seated there until 1999.
The Museum of the Leonese Identities opened up its gates on the 3rd of March 2015. It has two permanent exhibitions. The first one shows how used to be the lives of the inmates in the former jail. The second one, which is on the first floor, is a stroll through the city’s history.
It was noon and I was very hungry, so I searched for a café called ‘Décima Musa Arte y Café’, of which I read some good comments on the internet. However, I got surprised when I got there and saw the place was closed, even though Google showed it should be open since 10:00 o’clock.
I kept walking and I came across with ‘Coffee Break’, a small café with a wide range of meals and beverages. I ordered a veggie Sandwhich, orange juice and a cappuccino. I stayed there for a while to rest and write a little bit on my journey diary.
I went out of ‘Coffee Break’ and I got on my way to the church of San Juan de Dios, a couple of blocks away from there. This church is the only building of churrigueresque style in Leon. It served as a hospital first and was known as ‘Real de Santa Catalina Mártir’ (the hospitals used to be built next to a church in the colonial era). The hospital was abandoned several times and it was until the 90s when it became in use again by christians, under priest Mariano Dubon permission. It’s one of the most tradiotional spots in Leon and there are many ice-cream shops around the church. There’s also a square next to church, where many people meet up, chat and enjoy an ice-cream.
I thought about seeing other parts of the city and getting away from downtown. I had on mind to visit the Metropolitan Park, where the International Hot Air Balloon Fair is held every year, but it was quite late to go there. I chose to go to a mall, Plaza Mayor, which lies in the northern part of the city. I didn’t buy anything at Plaza Mayor but I enjoyed getting to see other parts of the city.
When I finished walking around Plaza Mayor, I requested an Uber to head to Café Berlin to have dinner there. I was there for a couple of hours, writing and surfing on my social networks. I decided to go back to the hostel early to get my stuff ready for I was going to depart to Guanajuato the next day.
I got to the hostel around 8:30 p.m. and I went upstairs to the hostel’s terrace to view the city by night before going to bed and rest.
Thank you for reading, Lagom Lifer!