Things To Do In Ajijic Mexico
This post was most recently updated on December 6th, 2019
There are so many things to do in Ajijic to keep you busy if you want to be. This laid back town of 11 000 residents is located a short 30 minute taxi ride from the Guadalajara airport.
Ajijic (pronounced Ah-Hee-Heek), meaning place of water, is located on the shores of Lake Chapala. Which happens to be Mexico’s largest fresh water lake. The Ajijic weather is perfect year round. The people are warm and friendly, and you’ll never be at a loss for things to do in Ajijic.
What To Do In Ajijic?
1. Stroll The Malecon
One of the most popular activities in Ajijic is to take a walk along the waterfront. The scenery is gorgeous with Lake Chapala to one side and the Sierra Nevada mountains in the background.
This is a great place to meet people walking their dogs, watch the fishermen out in their panga’s (small fishing boats), or to get some exercise with the free equipment located along the malecon.
2. Ajijic Street Market
The place to be every Wednesday morning in Ajijic is the street market. This is where you’ll find the freshest and best tasting produce. The prices are incredibly cheap, and everything you need to get you through the week can be found here.
Besides produce, you’ll find traditional Mexican clothing, colourful blankets, watches, handmade jewellery, leather purses, candy, home made cheeses, fresh meat, chocolate, and any kind of spices you desire.
In near by towns, San Antonio has their market on Sundays, and Chapala on Mondays.
3. Horseback Riding- La Floresta
One of the most beautiful sections of Ajijic is call La Floresta. During the spring the Jacaranda trees decorate the streets with their bright purple flowers. These mixed in with the tall palm and pines make the perfect tree lined streets.
This is the area where you’ll find horses to rent. Or you can hire a guide to take you out for as long as you want. The horses are gentle and it doesn’t cost much for a few hours ride.
4. Ajijic Hiking
There is a hiking group in Ajijic that meets every Tuesday and Friday morning. We were lucky enough to catch up with them one day to take a short hike up the mountain. It’s a great place to meet some of the local expats.
You get a great view overlooking the town from up in the mountains. If you have time, you can take one of the longer hikes to the waterfall. The El Tepalo waterfall is only visible in the rainy season. The best time to go is a few days after a heavy rain.
5. Tobolandia Waterpark
This waterpark located on the north, east side of Ajijic is perfect for families to take their children for the day. They have a swimming pool and waterslides to use. Admission is $6 for adults and $3 for children.
6. Movies Ajijic
For the cost of only $2.50, you can go see one of the latest movies out. And Wednesday is even cheaper at half price night. There are two movie theatres in Ajijic.
Movie Space Ajijic is the newest theatre in town located across from Walmart. The oldest theatre called Cinemas Del Lago is just as cheap and still has good seating and sound.
7. Ajijic Town Square
The Ajijic plaza is where the Mexican’s will be hanging out, chatting with family and friends, and watching their children run and play in the square. It’s a great place to people watch, or grab something to eat at one of the food stalls or restaurants nearby.
Sunday night they have live music in the square. You’ll see people dancing as the mariachi band plays. While we were there, a female singer took the stage dressed in traditional Mexican clothing and was entertaining the crowd.
8. Art Galleries
There are many art galleries around Ajijic to check out. You’ll find a lot different artists displaying their creations around the town. From sculptures, watercolours, oil and acrylic paintings, jewellery, stained glass, pottery and more.
Even some of the charming street stores are artistic and colourful. This is a restaurant and gift shop down one of the side streets.
9. Shopping In Ajijic
Around every corner in this quaint town you’ll find some very unique stores to shop in. This one is called the Lois Cuginis Opus Boutique and it’s the perfect spot to find women’s clothing and jewellery.
10. Balneario San Juan Cosala
Located 15 minutes away is the town of San Juan Cosala. A great day outing is to take the bus to the Balneario Spa and Thermal Bath. This is a hotel, but you can also get day passes to use to facilities.
You pay a price to get in to use the waterslides and pools. Then you have the option of paying extra for the thermal pools or a spa service. We chose the basic thermal pools option.
This is in an adults only area, and is a very relaxing way to spend a couple hours. With the basic package we had 3 different thermal pools to soak in and then a mud bath after. Your skin feels so soft when your done.
After the spa, you can spend your day at the pool. Or get something to eat at one of the restaurants. With food, drinks, and the thermal pools, the whole day only cost us $30 a piece.
11. Try Out The Ajijic Restaurants
There are so many great restaurants in Ajijic to try out. With plenty of different types of food options available. And the prices are very affordable.
One of our favourite spots was the Casa Cacau restaurant. This totally vegan restaurant specializes in anything chocolate. Their food tastes amazing, and the owners are super friendly.
The Peacock Garden Restaurant has great food, and the atmosphere is perfect in a beautiful garden setting. We saw 4 resident peacocks wandering around while we were there, along with a few chickens.
El Roble Cafe has some of the best prices for food in Ajijic. We paid $10 for lunch for the two of us and the food was delicious. Their menu also has plenty of breakfast and lunch options available.
12. Tour chapala
Chapala is about a 15 minute bus ride to the east of Ajijic. We decided to take a trip to this town on Monday when they have their weekly market.
There is a beautiful malecon located here as well right beside the street market.
You can hire a panga boat down by the water to take you over to Scorpion Island. Don’t expect to see scorpions on the island though. The name comes from the shape of the island.
The water is really calm, and the ride will take about 15 minutes. There are some restaurants on the island to grab a bite, or wander around and have a look at the Chapels. The flowers here are beautiful and if you search you can find some scorpion sculptures.
We were lucky enough to catch the Papantla Flying Men putting on a show on the malecon. This is the second time we’ve seen this 500 year old Mexican tradition. When we were in Puerto Vallarta we witnessed this daring ritual.
Places To Eat In Chapala
I highly recommend having a meal at La Palapa Del Guayabo. You have a great view of the mountains and lake right from your table.
The service is fast and they have an extensive menu to pick from.
This victorian style house called Casa Braniff was built in 1906. It belonged to the Braniff family of the Braniff airline fame. Now home to the Cazadores Restaurant. It is worth it just to go for a meal to see the inside of this historical mansion.
Our Time In Ajijic
While we were in Ajijic, we spend our time house sitting for a lady. You can read more about house sitting here.
Ajijic is a beautiful place to visit or live where you will never have a lack of things to keep you occupied. Throughout the year they have plenty of festivals and celebrations going on. While there weren’t any while we were there, it just gives us an excuse to return.