Los Altos de Jalisco

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Los Altos de Jalisco

Jaliscan Highlands
Templo El Calvario (cropped).jpg
Templo del Sagrado Corazon de Jesús (cropped).jpg
Fachada de la Catedral Basílica de Nuestra Señora de San Juan de los Lagos 02 (cropped).JPG
Lagos de Moreno restos coloniales.jpg
Antiguo edificio tepatitlense colonial.jpg
Coordinates: 21°10′N 104°25′W / 21.17°N 104.41°W / 21.17; -104.41Coordinates: 21°10′N 104°25′W / 21.17°N 104.41°W / 21.17; -104.41
 • Total925,648
Spanish for Highlander

Los Altos de Jalisco, or the Jaliscan Highlands, are a geographic and cultural region in the eastern part of the Mexican State of Jalisco, famed as a bastion of Mexican culture, cradling traditions from Tequila production to Charrería equestrianism. Los Altos are part of the greater Bajío region of Mexico, considered to be one of safest regions with one of the highest qualities of life in Latin America[1][2][3][4][5]

Los Altos are known for their high quality of life, for historic Mexican colonial architecture, and numerous traditional Mexican arts, primarily equestrianism, Mariachi, Tequila production, and traditional Mexican dances and festivals. The region is known as having one of the largest concentration of Mexicans of European descent in the country, primarily descended from the Criollos of Castillian, Crypto-Judaism,[6][7][8] Galicians, Asturian, Andalusian and Basque origin settled, but also from early Portuguese settlers and later French, Irish people, and Italian immigrants, among others.[9][10][11][12][13]


Templo de San Miguel in Yahualica de González Gallo, built in 1542.

The region's native inhabitants, the Chichimeca people, were conquered in the 16th century by Spanish conquistadors led by Captains Hernando Martel and Pedro de Anda in the Chichimeca War.

The first towns that inhabited the region were the Chichimeca nations, a name given by the Mexicas to a group of indigenous peoples who lived in the center and north of the country. [14]

The casualties that the Spanish conquerors had in the region due to the Chichimeca attacks led them to answer with a warlike ethnocide tactic. They took to the Altos de Jalisco, rural Castilian militiamen, who have the great majority of French descent who arrived in Castile, Spain during early of Middle Ages to repopulate the center of Spain. However, there were also Portuguese, Basques, Italians and Flemishs (natives of Flanders), who had previously fought against Turks and Moors during the Reconquista. In this way, among Europeans and Indians, the crucible of races so uncharacteristic of this region was formed. [15]

After the French intervention in Mexico within the early 1860s, the French forces were expelled from México under the order of General Eulogio Parra in 1866. However, some French communities stayed in the obscured areas of Los Altos, Jalisco.[16][17][18][19][20]



Los Altos is one of the two main tequila producing regions in the state of Jalisco, the other being the municipality of Tequila, Jalisco. The main tequila producing center in the region is Arandas[21] and the second region is Atotonilco El Alto.[22]


The charro tradition was strong in Jalisco, to be specified in a region called Los Altos de Jalisco. In Spain, a charro is a native of the province of Salamanca, especially in the area of Alba de Tormes, Vitigudino, Ciudad Rodrigo and Ledesma.[23] It's likely that the Mexican charro tradition derived from Spanish horsemen who came from Salamanca and settled in Los Altos de Jalisco.

Architecture of Los Altos[edit]

Many of Los Altos's older architectural structures, including entire sections of Pre-Hispanic and colonial, have been designated World Heritage sites and Pueblo Mágico for their historical, cultural, artistic significance. Lagos de Moreno is only one city in Los Altos de Jalisco on the lists of Pueblo Magico out of 121. The architecture in Los Altos are heavy influenced by European architects during the Spanish Colonial to early WWI era.


Los Altos have many shrines. San Juan de los Lagos is the second most visited pilgrimage shrine in Mexico, after the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City . The numerous shrines are important tourist attractions for the state of Jalisco:


Since 1996, Los Altos has been organized administratively by the state of Jalisco into two regions, the North Highlands (Altos Norte) and the South Highlands (Altos Sur).

North Highlands[edit]

The North Highlands (Altos Norte) region covers 8,882 km², which represents 11% of the state's territory. The municipalities in the region are the following:

Lagos de Moreno is the municipality seat of the North Highlands. In this region, factories develop clothing, furniture, footwear, metal goods, sweets and jams. Some of the municipalities in this region have a very important livestock activity mainly in the production of dairy products.

South Highlands[edit]

The South Highlands (Altos Sur) region has 6,667 km², which is 5% of the state's surface. The municipalities of this region are the following:

Tepatitlán de Morelos is the municipality seat of the South Highlands. In this region is the most recent municipality of the State, San Ignacio Cerro Gordo, which was separated from Arandas. Traditionally Atotonilco el Alto, Ayotlán, Tototlán and Degollado belong to this southern zone of Los Altos. In general, the region has the production of tequila and the development of livestock, clothing, and various crafts.

Notable Alteños[edit]




See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-10-21. Retrieved 2014-09-07.
  2. ^ "Economía - Noticieros Televisa". Noticieros Televisa.
  3. ^ Cruz, Osiel (16 August 2013). "Bajío, el nuevo milagro mexicano".
  4. ^ "Estados del Bajío crecen a ritmo asiático: Banamex".
  5. ^ "El Bajío crece a ritmo de tigre asiático". www.elfinanciero.com.mx.
  6. ^ "Francisco MARTIN - Geneanet". gw.geneanet.org. Retrieved 2018-11-30.
  7. ^ "Presencia judía en Los Altos de Jalisco | Diario Judío México". Diario Judío: Diario de la Vida Judía en México y el Mundo (in Spanish). 2011-07-19. Retrieved 2018-11-30.
  8. ^ Arredondo, Benjamin (2018-06-07). "El Bable: Del mito judío-sefardí en los Altos de Jalisco". El Bable. Retrieved 2018-11-30.
  9. ^ "Esos Altos de Jalisco (documented about Asturian, Andalusian, and Galician settlers)". soyjovenjalisco.mx (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018-12-06.
  10. ^ "Las Mujeres más Bellas del Mundo Están en Los Altos de Jalisco". LA BRECHA (in Spanish). 2013-07-26. Retrieved 2018-12-06.
  11. ^ Judío, Central de Noticias Diario (2011-07-19). "Presencia judía en Los Altos de Jalisco | Diario Judío México". Diario Judío: Diario de la Vida Judía en México y el Mundo (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018-12-06.
  12. ^ Complutense University of Madrid - Los Mitos Vivos: Itentidad Regional en Los Altos de Jalisco
  13. ^ Meyer, Jean. "DOCUMENTO: LA FUNDACION DE SAN FRANCISCO DE ASIS, ALTOS DE JALISCO. (documented about poor Spanish, Basque and Galician settlers in Los Altos)" (PDF). www.colmich.edu.mx. Retrieved 2018-12-06.
  14. ^ http://www.historia-mexico.info/2011/10/los-chichimecas.html Chichimecas
  15. ^ http://www.fazendogenero.ufsc.br/8/sts/ST65/Ortiz-Cortes_65.pdf
  16. ^ "The History of Jalisco". houstonculture. Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  17. ^ "Presencia judía en Los Altos de Jalisco". Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  18. ^ "Las Mujeres más Bellas del Mundo Están en Los Altos de Jalisco". Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  19. ^ "Los Altos, región mestiza". Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  20. ^ "Francisco Primitivo Martín". Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  21. ^ Gobierno Municipal de Arandas Official website
  22. ^ Gobierno Municipal de Atotonilco El Alto Official website
  23. ^ charro in the Diccionario de la Real Academia Española.

Further reading[edit]

  • Jim Tuck, "The Holy War in Los Altos: Regional Analysis of Mexico's Cristero Rebellion." Tucson, Arizona: University of Arizona Press, 1982, ISBN 0-8165-0779-1