Guadalajara, in the Mexican state of Jalisco, is a city brimming with culture and artistry renowned across Mexico and the globe.
While Mexico City is the capital and largest city in Mexico, Guadalajara is the second largest and well worth visiting on your next vacation. Witness historical city centers, impressive architecture, and famous works of art by renowned Mexican artists.
This Mexican city is the home of mariachi music, just like Jalisco is the home of tequila. From the towering Guadalajara Cathedral to the bustling Mercado Libertad or Mercado San Juan de Dios, there’s never a dull moment in this enchanting place.
The Guadalajara International Film Festival attracts crowds in June to view the cinematic storytelling of (mostly) Spanish-language films.
Meanwhile, the Guadalajara International Book Fair in November attracts intellectuals and bibliophiles to the cultural city of Guadalajara each year. With so many unmissable events and things to do in Guadalajara, when is the best time to go?
Continue reading to learn more about the best, cheapest, least busy, and worst times to visit, and a few things to consider before booking your trip. Let us be your guide!
Why You Should Visit Guadalajara
Though Guadalajara is the second largest Mexican city, comparing Guadalajara to Mexico City is apples to oranges.
Mexico City boasts over 22 million citizens compared to Guadalajara’s five million, making Guadalajara an exceptional choice for those who are concerned about crowds on their vacation.
Did you know that Guadalajara is the fashion capital of Mexico? That’s right! In the second-largest Mexican city, tourists will experience colorful fabrics, shiny metallics, and vibrant outfits at glorious celebrations, processions, and fashion shows.
Visit Guadalajara between October to January to catch fashion events like Minerva Fashion, Intermoda, Modama, and Expo Joya. There’s also no better place than Guadalajara to enjoy tequila.
This region in Mexico has produced tequila since the 16th century and is the birthplace of this popular and delicious alcoholic beverage. Whether you eat the worm or not, you have to try a shot of tequila when visiting Guadalajara.
History lovers shouldn’t pass up the chance to visit Guadalajara. This city in the Jalisco state made history as the battle site in the Mexican Independence War.
Today, tourists to Guadalajara can visit statues, historical squares, famous Cathedrals, museums, and more. If you want to go further back in time, visit some of the incredible archeological sites near the city.
As the former playground of the Aztecs, the Teuchitlán culture, and more, Mexico is rich with historical sites like Ixtepete or Los Guachimontones that have lasted longer than the empires that created them.
Overall Best Time to Visit Guadalajara
The best time to visit Guadalajara is between October and December. At this time of the year, visitors can expect pleasant weather with sunny skies, moderate temperatures, and various events worth checking out.
During the fall, many events happen in Guadalajara city. From fashion shows to international book and film festivals, there’s never a dull moment to visit Guadalajara.
Guadalajara sees warm temperatures in October, November, and December, with highs of 82°F (28°C) to 78°F (26°C). Lows in the fall reach 56°F (13°C) to 45°F (7°C), especially at night. During these three months, there are virtually zero days of average rainfall.
Flight prices in October and November are moderately priced to accommodate the busy season. However, December is the most expensive time to fly to Mexico and Guadalajara, especially during the holidays.
Since the best time to visit Guadalajara is between October and December, it’s ideal to book your trip around six months in advance to guarantee you get your preferred room categories and hotels.
Cheapest Time to Visit Guadalajara
The cheapest time to visit Guadalajara is during the summer to early fall, between the months of June and September. At this time of year, be prepared for heavy rains and high temperatures.
In June, temperatures reach an astonishingly hot high of 88°F (31°C), with around nine days of average rainfall. Lows drop to around 61°F (16°C) at night.
July and August in Guadalajara see the most rainfall of the year, with 14 days each of average rainfall. July, August, and September see temperature highs of 82°F (28°C) and lows of around 61°F (16°C).
September, however, sees four fewer days of rain with ten days of average rainfall. With so much rain and high temperatures, exploring Guadalajara is a sticky and sweaty endeavor during the summer and early fall.
However, it’s worth it to book your trip during this time if you can stand the heat because everything is more affordably priced than in the high season. Fewer tourists visit Guadalajara and Mexico in general during the hot summer months in the northern hemisphere.
This means that flights and hotels are cheaper than ever. Traveling to Guadalajara between June and September is one of the best ways to strike gold and find an unbeatable deal on your vacation.
Least Busy Time to Visit Guadalajara
If you want to avoid crowds on your vacation, visit Guadalajara during the least busy time between June and September.
With sticky hot temperatures and high chances of rain on your vacation, crowds avoid these months to travel in Guadalajara. Guadalajara is a city of over five million people, so expect crowds year-round.
That said, with the school season out for the summer, most families don’t take their kids to Mexico during the summer and early fall. At this time of year, you can usually find deals on flights, hotels, and tours.
Worst Time to Visit Guadalajara
The worst time to visit Guadalajara is in April/May or during the rainy season from June to September. April and May aren’t part of the rainy season, so you’ll see maybe only a day of average rainfall per month.
However, May is the hottest month in Guadalajara, with April coming in a close second. May in Guadalajara sees temperatures reach incredible highs of 91°F (33°C). April isn’t far behind, with highs of 89°F (32°C).
Walking around Guadalajara on walking tours of the historic city isn’t nearly as pleasurable in high temperatures as it is during the best time to visit Guadalajara from October to December.
Another one of the worst times to visit Guadalajara is between June to September because of the heavy rains and high temperatures.
While it won’t be as blisteringly hot as in April or May, many vacationers see rain on most days of their trips at this time of year, making it an undesirable time to travel if you’re not hunting for a good deal.
Things to Consider
Before planning your fantastic adventure to Guadalajara, Mexico, you should keep a few things in mind:
- Get travel insurance: Travel insurance is worthwhile to protect your trip in case of cancellations or unforeseen circumstances, especially if you’re not planning your trip during the best time to visit Guadalajara.
- Brush up on your Spanish: Do yourself the favor of practicing common phrases in Spanish to help you get the most out of new interactions on your trip.
- Don’t drink tap water: It is not safe to drink tap water in Mexico. Otherwise, you might experience Montezuma’s revenge. Always drink bottled or boiled water, or enjoy a shot of tequila instead!
- Add an extra day: Speaking of tequila, add an extra day to your Guadalajara itinerary if you plan to do a tequila tour. You’ll appreciate the extra day to sleep in the most after a day of drinking.
- Have Pesos & USD: The Mexican peso (MXN) is the national currency of Mexico. However, American money is widely accepted in Mexico. It’s best to have both currencies on you during your trip to buy things from small shops.
- You can use credit cards: While having cash on hand is useful, it’s best to carry credit cards instead of cash for safety reasons when traveling in Mexico. VISA, Mastercard, and AMEX are widely accepted, especially at hotels, restaurants, and large chains.
Frequently Asked Questions
Learn more about visiting beautiful Guadalajara with answers to FAQs below:
What are the best things to do in Guadalajara?
There are more than a handful of amazing things to do in Guadalajara for every type of traveler. Some of the best things to do on a visit to Guadalajara include the following:
- Visit the Guadalajara Cathedral
- Explore the Plaza de los Mariachis
- Take a tequila tour
- See the Guachimontones Archaeological Site
- See art at the MUSA Museum of the Arts University of Guadalajara
- Travel back in time with the Museum of Paleontology Guadalajara
What is the best way to get around in Guadalajara?
The best way to get around Guadalajara, Mexico, is to walk! Guadalajara is a walkable city worth exploring on foot, so you don’t miss a moment. Alternatively, tourists can use easily accessible public transit or take a taxi with a pre negotiated rate.
How many days should I spend in Guadalajara?
Most travelers plan a three to five-day vacation to Guadalajara. However, you could spend many more days exploring the wonders of this vibrant city if time permits. Alternatively, some travelers only stay for two or three nights as they travel onward to the coast.
What language do they speak in Guadalajara?
Spanish is the official language in Guadalajara and throughout Mexico. However, many people in Mexico speak English, especially within the tourism industry. That said, it’s wise to brush up on common phrases before your trip to better engage with locals.
So, When Should You Visit Guadalajara?
The best time to visit Guadalajara is in the fall. Visitors to Guadalajara in the months between October and December will experience balmy weather with slim chances of rain or cloudy skies.
Meanwhile, popular festivals and unmissable events occur regularly throughout the fall season.
Visit eye-widening archeological sites, walk through historic city streets, and experience the sights, smells, and sounds of a Guadalajara market on an incredible visit to the second-largest city in Mexico.
There’s never a bad time to visit Guadalajara. This city is bursting with culture, tradition, mouthwatering cuisine, and more. However, if you want to come when the weather is best, and the skies are clearest, the best time to visit Guadalajara is between October and December.
If you want to get a great deal on a Guadalajara vacation, book your trip during the rainy season or during the hottest months of the year between April to September.
Now that you know everything about the best time to travel to Guadalajara, you’re ready to book your next epic vacation!