I constantly rave about Queretaro State’s Secretaria de Turismo (tourism board). They really have their stuff together, with amazing maps, good websites, great brochures, all of which serve to seduce people to a Mexican state that (to be honest) I initially thought didn’t really have that much going for it. (I have since reconsidered this stance– marketing helps me decide.)
To be fair, I think they might still be over-hyping a few things. For example, check out page 7 of this brochure (courtesy Burro Hall), which outlines a 5 day, action-packed itinerary around Queretaro… except most of the days’ schedules seem to end after lunch. But their main travel website http://queretaro.travel/english (available also in Spanish & French!) is solid, highlighting Queretaro’s wineries and cheeseries (a.k.a. “dairies” to you lesser fans of cheese) and the illustrious Ruta de Vino y Queso near Tequisquiapan. They’re also quite proud of their Franciscan Missions located in the middle of nowhere in the beautiful Sierra Gorda.
Anyway, my point being: Queretaro’s tourism board is on it, promoting Queretaran tourism in a classy, effective manner.
Now, contrast this with Hidalgo. We drove through a large portion of Hidalgo on our way back from Las Pozas, and stopped randomly in Ixmiquilpan because we were starving. (This town is also known as Iximikkimikkipan…because that’s easier to remember.) We were excited when we spotted the tourism office, and quickly crossed the main plaza to see what wondrous information lay in store for us.
What we discovered was that Hidalgo is going for more of a “Sex Sells” tourism campaign. They had several small brochures, at least half of which were adorned with this chicky:
Hidalgo has a website too, but it seems a bit more heavy on downloadable photos than insightful tourism suggestions. Also, their tourism slogan “Hidalgo en la piel” seems to best translate as “Hidalgo on the skin”. And while I can understand some kind of figurative translation about feeling Hidalgo on your skin, I don’t know if that’s really what I want in a Mexican state. That said, it’s not all bad– the one thing that might get me back to Hidalgo is this huge map of all the spas across the state:
Outside of that, though, Hidalgo may want to take some tips from their Queretaran neighbors on how to truly sex up an oft-forgotten state. Because I just don’t know if this woman’s blue air-brushed breast is going to do it for me: