Hermosillo is the capital city of the state of Sonora located in the northwestern region of Mexico. The municipality sits in the center of Sonora, is responsible for the governing of over 3800 towns, and is the economic center of the state. Within this municipality is Kino Bay (Bahía Kino), located on the Sea of Cortez (aka Gulf of California). Kino Bay is a “Priority Tourist Zone” for the municipality and state, which means they plan to develop it into a major tourist destination.
Hermosillo is known as the “City of the Sun” due to its propensity for sweltering, hot days in the arid, semi-desert air. It’s also prone to colder winters than found in other parts of Mexico. It’s not necessarily known as a tourist destination per se, although travelers use it as a stopover on their way to the coast. If you're driving from the U.S. through you'll almost certainly want to take full advantage of this desert oasis. From Tijuana, it's a full day drive to Hermosillo so it's a nice, civilized, and safe place to stop as night falls.
Hermosillo has a thriving business community and hosts frequent business travelers. Hermosillo is home to 30% of Sonora’s population and almost all of its manufacturing industry. The birth of its manufacturing sector began in automobiles when in the 1980s, Ford, an American company, built the Hermosillo Stamping & Assembly Plant.
While Kino Bay is the municipalities focus for tourist development, Hermosillo has some fine features and attractions of its own that merit a visitors attention, starting with the center of the city - Plaza Zaragoza. Built in 1865, the Plaza features a fascinating kiosk, which in early 20th century was brought over from Florence, Italy. Visitors to the plaza can also view its flower garden and statues of Generals Ignacio Esquire and García Morales. From the plaza the wide streets of the city has fine architecture for visitors to enjoy along with a cathedral and several museums. Many other attractions are also available, and visitors traveling through or staying in town for a time, will surely enjoy their time in Hermosillo.
Attractions & Things To Do In Hermosillo
Kino Bay – about an hour’s drive from Hermosillo, the water is calm and warm, making it a great location for swimming, snorkeling, sailing, scuba diving, and fishing. Kino Bay is a “Priority Tourism Zone” for the Hermosillo municipality and the state of Sonora. From the shores of Kino Bay visitor’s can see Isla Tiburon, an ecological zone and home to wild sheep and deer.
Cerro de la Campana – this hill with a 985-foot elevation has a cobblestone road leading to the "El Caracol" observatory at its top and offers breathtaking views of Hermosillo and its sunsets. The hill is commonly known as the “Keeper of the City”, because the city was built around it. This prominent landmark is also referred to as the “Hill of the Bell” based on the legend
that striking certain rocks on the hill will create a bell sound.
Sonora's Museum of Indigenous Cultures – a museum dedicated to the Sonoran culture. Five large galleries feature Sonora’s different ethnic groups (i.e. Seris, Mayos and Yaquis) with displays of their clothing, art, handcrafts, and pictures. The museum is also known as Casa Hoeffer (Hoeffer House), after Doctor Alberto Hoeffer who was responsible for the construction of the building in 1904.
La Pintada – 37 miles south of Hermosillo is the mountainous region where indigenous people hid from the Spaniards. Visitors can view more than 2000 colorful cave paintings created by the Seri and Pima people. The paint used was made from minerals mixed with limestone and iron oxide in varying intensities to create a range of colors – yellow, ochre, orange, black and white.
Our Lady of Carmen Chapel – built between 1837 and 1841 by a wealthy industrialist, Don Pascual Inigo, it is one of Hermosillo’s oldest buildings. Upon his death, the property was donated to the Franciscan Third Order. A wonderful piece of architect and an important piece of Hermosillo’s history.
Sonora Museum – A large museum whose exhibits depict the historical development of Sonora. Exhibits include artifacts of pre-Hispanic culture, the missions, the ethnic resistance to Spaniard’s ruling, and modern history. The building was an old Hermosillo penitentiary.
The Sauceda Recreational Park – Hermosillo’s best recreation park, it is a well-equipped family park featuring palapas, grills for picnics, an interactive learning museum, water slides and swimming pools.
The Sonora Ecological Center - located south of Hermosillo, it’s where environmentalists work on conservation programs and perform research on the region’s ecosystems. Its ecological reserve spans 217 acres of flora and fauna indigenous to the area. The center is home to an array of indigenous birds, reptiles, white-tailed deer, bighorn sheep, sea lions, and other exotic animals.