Explore a Mosaic of Traditional Micro-Destinations

The Chapala Riviera is made up of a colorful mosaic of towns ready to meet the needs of the most demanding traveler. This tourist corridor has unique areas for relaxation and inspiration, creating a priceless opportunity to share special moments with your family, friends, or significant other. The micro-destinations around Lake Chapala offer boat tours, thermal springs, historic buildings, traditional menus, and one of the best climates in the country. Areval Lakeside Boutique Hotel and Event Venue would like to share a short guide on what to do in Chapala and where to go in this lovely corner of Jalisco.

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San Cristóbal Zapotitlán

One of the biggest attractions in Chapala is its boardwalk, or Malecón, where you can view the imposing peaks of the mountains that ring the lake that mirrors the sky. Visit the Artisans Market, a riot of color, texture, and traditional pieces from around the country. Other “can’t miss” items on the list include a visit to the Church of Saint Francis of Assisi, built in 1548, and the Municipal Palace, which was once a luxury hotel.

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Ocotlán’s attractions include the Regional Museum of Anthropology and History (with an exhibit of original pre-Hispanic pieces and images of petroglyphs), the Monument to our Lord of Mercy, the House of Culture, the Chapel of La Purísima, and the Church of our Lord of Mercy.


Jamay’s central plaza is home to a 33-meter (108-foot) monument built in honor of Pope Pius IX. Restaurants line the lakeshore, where visitors can savor regional dishes including charalitos dorados (breaded fish), the famous caldo michi (fish stew), and other delights.

La Barca

La Barca’s Historic Center is adorned with the elegant architecture of the old mansions and archways that line its streets. Its most popular tourist sites include the Church of Saint Monica, the central plaza, the La Moreña Museum, and the Las Calles archaeological zone, located near the mountain of Portezuelo.


Ajijic is a lively and picturesque collection of colorful homes scattered along the lakeshore. Visitors will find an ample variety of galleries, bars, and restaurants serving both local and international dishes. Its central plaza is a charming meeting point. The Church of Saint Andrew, built in 1901, is a must-visit for a look at its neoclassical architecture.

San Juan Cosalá

Travelers come to San Juan Cosalá to enjoy the benefits of the thermal springs in the different spas. Among its many attractions is the Piedra Barrenada area, the destination of choice to savor the traditional cuisine of this lakeside region.


Jocotepec has become home to foreign intellectuals seeking the warmth and serenity of Mexico’s interior provinces. Visitors will find several buildings from the 18th century (such as the Church of the Lord of the Mount) and the new Malecón (boardwalk). Don’t miss the delicious local birria (spicy meat stew) and the nieve de garrafa (artisan ice cream).


Tuxcueca is surprising for its peaceful ambiance. A favorite pastime is walking along its lovely little wharf towards the Chapel of the Virgin of Guadalupe, the perfect spot for panoramic views of Lake Chapala.

Tizapán El Alto

The Church of Saint Francis of Assisi, finished in 1905, and the ruins of the ex-hacienda of San Francisco, which date back to 1542, are among the top architectural landmarks in Tizapán El Alto.


Travelers to Poncitlán will enjoy viewing the convent of Saints Peter and Paul, founded in 1533, with its image of Our Lady of the Rosary, donated by Charles V in 1548 and set on its main altar. For a little more adventure, visit the Foco Tonal, a mystical place where energy flows and creates dazzling manifestations.