The winds howling down the Sea of Cortez are keeping us here in Banderas Bay. Lucky for us, Arland is back and he offered to rent a car and drive us all up to San Sebastián de Oeste. This is an old mining town 4,500 feet up in the Sierra Madre Mountains. The ride up was beautiful with cattle, corn and coffee plantations. Lots of small towns with speed bumps. Mexico has speed bumps entering and leaving every town no matter if the town only has a few buildings. We stopped at a tequila distillery on the way. Pretty little place but the prices were way over our budget.

Small tequila distillery on the way to San Sabastian

Small tequila distillery on the way to San Sebastián

Tequila Distillery 1

Tequila Distillery 4

They also made liquores

They also made liquores

Arland hanging at the tequila distillery

Arland hanging at the tequila distillery

San Sebastián De Oeste was founded in 1605 as a gold and silver mine. At one time the population was 40,000, but only 600 live there now. The mines are said to be partly responsible for the development of Puerto Vallarta, known then as Las Peñas. It supplied salt by mules to the mines which was used in the smelting process. The gold and silver was sent by mule to Veracruz, where it was delivered to Spain once a year.

A picture of the miners

A picture of the miners. Not a happy looking crew.

Busses and tourist vans visit the town but it still has an old town feel to it. In part because there are only a few shops, restaurants and hotel rooms. Many buildings have been saved and reconstruction is done with an eye on the history of the town.

The town had a fort in order to protect the mines. Today it is used for special events.

Inside the courtyard at the fort

Inside the courtyard at the fort

Inside the courtyard at the fort

Inside the courtyard at the fort

From one of the older sections of the fort

From one of the older sections of the fort

Today the courtyard is a peaceful place to take a nap

Today the courtyard is a peaceful place to take a nap

We enjoyed a nice Italian meal at Montebello.

Montebello

The church was originally built in the 1600’s then rebuilt after an earthquake in 1868.

SB Church 2

SB Church

A shopkeeper came running after us asking if we would come visit her newly opened store. She mentioned the word ‘candy’ so we just had to stop by. We came away with some very different candies.

One of the shopkeepers

One of the shopkeepers

SB 5

SB 6

No matter what town we are in, we always see kids on bikes

No matter what town we are in, big or small, we always see kids on bikes

SB 3

Beautiful setting for a nice dinner

Beautiful setting for a nice dinner

SB 1