San Miguel de Allende
Important chapters in Mexican history were written in San Miguel de Allende, whose very name references one such chapter and its central protagonist: Ignacio Allende, a Spanish Army captain who ultimately embraced and advanced Mexican independence. Colonial influences are visible throughout the city, primarily in its well-preserved architecture, which was one of the justifications for UNESCO's 2008 designation of San Miguel as a World Heritage Site. But contemporary San Miguel also reflects the influences of its large expat population. Artists and writers, most of them from the United States, have flocked here for decades, making their mark on cultural life and serving as the impetus for the city to be as bilingual and bicultural as it is.