Book Review: Western Mexico: A Traveler's Treasury

From the shores of Lake Patzcuaro to the cloud forest of Manatatlán to the mines of Zacatecas, Western Mexico: A Traveler’s Treasury takes the armchair traveler on a tour of western Mexico’s treasures, many of them little known. The author, geographer Tony Burton, gets off the beaten path time and time again, and provides detailed historical and cultural information about towns that many guidebook authors only mention in passing: La Barca, San Juan de los Lagos, Tamazula, and Lagos de Moreno, to name just a few.

Some chapters give walking tours of towns and ruins, while other sections are more focused toward historical narrative. I found the historical narratives fascinating, particularly since several were devoted to my favorite haunts, including places such as Barra de Navidad that seldom appear in ordinary history books. I read with great interest about the history of piracy on the Pacific Coast, and was delighted to read Burton’s mini biographies of famous characters from Colima, Jalisco, and Michoacán.

But Burton offers more than just history: he recommends scenic routes, obscure ruins, shopping expeditions, eco-reserves, and specific destinations within towns and cities. Among the areas covered are Zacatecas, Jalisco, Colima, coastal Nayarit, and Michoacán. I cannot wait to take this book to Mexico with me. Although I have already traveled in western Mexico extensively, I must have added a hundred things to my bucket list as I read. Western Mexico: A Traveler’s Treasury would also be an ideal guide for planning an unusual and culturally rich itinerary.

Now in its fourth edition, Western Mexico: A Traveler’s Treasury includes maps, attractive line drawings, a solid index, and a travel timetable.

<A HREF=””> Widgets</A>Editor’s note: Tony Burton is the co-author of one of our favorite Mexico reference books, Geo-Mexico: The Geography and Dynamics of Modern Mexico. He blogs at