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Old 01-01-2009, 10:03 PM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
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Question Guadalajara, pros and cons?

I am a 22 year old soon-to-be grad thinking of moving to Mexico to assume a teaching position in either a public or private school. I spent six months in Morelia while in college and really enjoyed my experience. I have heard many good things about Guadalajara, but if you have ever lived their or even visited, please give me your opinion on the city, people, activities, nightlife, etc. Thanks!
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Old 01-01-2009, 10:14 PM
Status: "Attacks in self-defense only." (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Salt Lake City
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My husband's family is from just outside Guadalajara. I visited there for the first time a little over a year ago, and plan to go back in June. I really wasn't there long enough to form much of an opinion, but the weather was wonderful and I understand it's pretty nice there year-round.
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Old 01-02-2009, 05:21 AM
 
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Really depends on your preferences. If you're a city guy, it could be great for you. It's the second largest city in Mexico, feels quite sprawling, there are some nice areas, some ritzy upscale neighbourhoods and some places that are pretty sketchy. Tapatios are great, very welcoming and fun, better if you speak Spanish. There are quite a few day trips you can make from the area, you're a few hours from the beach and about an hr from Lake Chapala, which can be nice for a weekend break. Nightlife... there's plenty, from cantinas, to bars, to clubs and upscale places... Guadalajara has a rep for being the birthplace of a lot of elements deemed traditional to Mexican culture (read: mariachi and tequila) so of course, there's plenty of drinking and music to be found. The downtown is nice, I personally prefer bright colonial cities but you might like the plaza and there are some historical buildings. There are a few malls, if you're into shopping like that, but of course plenty of markets well worth a visit. And the food is yum, of course. Price-wise, it's more reasonable than say, Monterrey, but it's not the cheapest place in Mexico, still very affordable though. Note: depending on where you'll be teaching and what kind of teaching, I would suggest bringing a fair amount of savings with you as a financial cushion and to help you afford more entertainment/travel/nicer food, if you want that to be part of your experience. Pay might not be great...

I have a lot friends who are/were teachers there and in nearby places like Tlaquepaque, if you had more specific questions re. language schools or pay, ask away.

Pros and cons... well since they're so subjective, maybe you could say what you're after to get a better idea of whether the city is a good fit for you? e.g. there are quite a few expats in Guadalajara and the area, it does feel like one of the more Americanized cities there. Depending on what you like, this could be a positive or a negative.
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Old 01-02-2009, 10:37 AM
 
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guadalajara despite its size still seems a classic Mexican town so it will have all the comforts of modern life and yet feeling will follow you in mexico, not the same thing happens with other cities such as Monterrey or in the north who are copying the American style, in few years you will no find any difference staying in mexico or usa...
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Old 01-02-2009, 08:13 PM
emh
 
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I spent several days in Guadalajara and found it to be one of the ugliest cities I've ever seen. And since I took an hour bus ride from the main bus terminal into the city center, I saw quite a bit of the city! Besides that, I found the city to be a ghost town. Hardly anyone out walking with the exception of the carless street in the center of town.
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:03 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emh View Post
I spent several days in Guadalajara and found it to be one of the ugliest cities I've ever seen. And since I took an hour bus ride from the main bus terminal into the city center, I saw quite a bit of the city! Besides that, I found the city to be a ghost town. Hardly anyone out walking with the exception of the carless street in the center of town.
Hmm, though as you said so yourself, you were only there a few days. I've lived there and downtown is rarely a ghost town. Plus the ride from the bus terminal to the centre may well have skipped the prettier or more upscale parts of town.

Have you lived in Mexico? How would you compare it to other places here?
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Old 01-03-2009, 12:47 PM
emh
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ciaobellaxx View Post
Hmm, though as you said so yourself, you were only there a few days. I've lived there and downtown is rarely a ghost town. Plus the ride from the bus terminal to the centre may well have skipped the prettier or more upscale parts of town.

Have you lived in Mexico? How would you compare it to other places here?
I was there for 3-4 days which was enough to give me a sense of the city. As I said, the carless street had lots of energy; outside of that not so much. It felt like I was in the downtown of a large US city. No one out and about. And hardly any car traffic either.

I've visited Mexico City, Morelia, San Miguel de Allende and lived in Oaxaca and Guanajuato. Guadalajara was my least favorite of those cities. I actually went there with the intention of staying for a few months but left after a few days for the reasons I've already stated.
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Old 01-03-2009, 12:57 PM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
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Of the cities you've been to emh, which was your favorite?
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Old 01-03-2009, 06:12 PM
emh
 
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Originally Posted by Garyc3 View Post
Of the cities you've been to emh, which was your favorite?
Oh, I forgot I've been to Queretaro as well. My favorite would have to be between Guanajuato, Oaxaca, and Queretaro.

Guanajuato is a beautiful city and fairly well to do from what I could tell (it's an old silver mining town). And there was lots of street energy. The main downside is that it's a fairly small city (about 150,000 people) and there wasn't a whole lot to do there.

Oaxaca isn't a particularly attractive city (at least relative to Guanajuato and Queretaro) but there was lots of things going on there. Cultural stuff that is. Dance, music, festivals, etc. All of it free or less than $10.

I wasn't in Queretaro long enough to get a feel for the city. But it was beautiful. And it was picked by a Mexican magazine as the best city to live in Mexico. There were also very few foreigners (which could be a pro or con depending on your perspective).
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Old 01-04-2009, 12:18 PM
 
2,383 posts, read 3,111,282 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emh View Post
I spent several days in Guadalajara and found it to be one of the ugliest cities I've ever seen. And since I took an hour bus ride from the main bus terminal into the city center, I saw quite a bit of the city! Besides that, I found the city to be a ghost town. Hardly anyone out walking with the exception of the carless street in the center of town.
I have been to Guadalajara countless times and though it is also the least favorite of mine, it was never a ghost town. For those that dont like big cities, this is not the place for you. Guadalajara is VERY BIG. However, it has great resources, night life is great, you can get transportation just about anywhere. There is though a lot of smog, lots of people and it may not be the cleanest. Still, if you are young and want to enjoy the club scenes this would be a great place for you. Good luck.
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