Santa Rosalia

Newly resinstalled Santa Rosalia sign. Parts of it had been visible for a couple of days but it finally went up as Christmas decorations were starting to be installed around town.
We went two weeks without internet and this was seen at a taxi stand. There is good wifi in town, but it helps to use Telcel as a hot spot. Marina wifi was better than the last time we were in town, but still iffy.

Santa Rosalía is not your typical Mexican tourist town. It’s a mining town with a few tourists. That being said, the marina was very full when we arrived. We got one of the last available slips. We got all the salt washed off Gypsy and headed toward town. The town shuts down for the afternoon! Except for a few restaurants and mercados, shops were closed until 5:00. What to do? The walk from the marina into town passes by the doors in the hillside labeled with mine names. There are signs explaining how they came to be named and by whom and the doors had always been locked up when we were there before (Covid probably had a lot to do with that). Well, the doors were open and we decided to give it a whirl. For 60 pesos we could have a tour, and Luis gave us an interesting and informative history of the mine and the town. After an unsuccessful ownership by the Germans, the French became involved in 1886 and ran the mine until 1954 when their contract ended. They were here for the copper. Companie de Boleo built Santa Rosalía for the mine. Working conditions for the miners were primitive and extreme, with summer temperatures in the mines often reaching 50 degrees Centigrade. Society was strictly segregated. When the church was built, assembled by Yaqui workers, they weren’t allowed to enter the building to worship, but had to stay outside. Working conditions are better now and the mine is run by a Korean company.

Iglesia Santa Bárbara. Designed by Gustave Eiffel, it was built in 1897 out of steel panels that were shipped to Santa Rosalía. Society at the time was strictly segregated and the Yaqui workers who assembled the church had to worship from outside.

We needed to restock the boat, so we bought tortillas at the tortillería, sweets from the dulcería, fish from the pescadaría, goat cheese from a guy selling it out of a cooler on the street, and groceries from a grocery store. There’s a big Ley grocery store up on the bluff above the old foundry and a couple of decent smaller grocers in the main part of town. If nothing else, all the little stores are a great way to explore town and get some exercise.

Green Heron on the dock.

3 thoughts on “Santa Rosalia”

    1. Yes, finding out the history of a place is very interesting. For example many in Santa Rosalia can’t stand the French. That escaped us on our first two visits. Our other guiding principle is always try the street food.


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