About Guanajuato

In a country where the most anticipated holiday of the year is a celebration the dead, Guanajuato's Mummy Museum is pretty much the ultimate manifestation of Mexico's death fixation. Visitors from all over come to see the rather macabre display featuring well over 100 mummies, easily making it one of Guanajuato's most popular - and most peculiar - stops.

Guanajuato mummy museum

So just why does Guanajuato have so many mummies? In 1865, city officials deemed it necessary to remove some of the bodies from the overcrowded public cemetery - the "Panteón" - in order to make room for more. However, authorities quickly discovered that what they were finding weren't skeletons as they expected, but rather mummified bodies complete with facial expressions. It turns out that the combination of area's dry atmosphere and the mineral content of the soil preserves and naturally mummifies bodies- a process which only takes 5 or 6 years.

Today you can check out the scores of mummies, including the first mummy that was discovered, a pregnant mummy, the world's smallest mummy and children looking like little porcelain dolls. Some of the mummies are clothed, some are naked, others sport just shoes. There are even some mummies that are believed to have been been buried alive- particularly people who were thought dead during a cholera outbreak and immediately buried for fear of the disease spreading.

Guanajuato Mummy Museum

Camino a las Momias, s/n
Tel: 732-06-39
9am - 6pm