Not all cowboys are the same.
A charro is someone who specifically practices the centuries-old sports art of la charrería, while a vaquero is what we’d use to describe a “cowboy.”
Though the official Día del Charro is September 14, in Ajijic it’s usually observed the Sunday before the September 16 Independence Day holiday.
2018 Event Information
This year in Ajijic, el Día del Charro will be on Sunday, September 9. The day begins around 11:30 a.m. as the cowboys and escaramuzas arrive at San Andrés Church. This is the one time of the year that horses are allowed on this outdoor atrium. A special mass begins at 12 p.m. and lasts an hour while the majority of the cowboys and cowgirls remain outside on their horses. The parade starts at 1 p.m. and ends about an hour later.
The parade starts in the courtyard outside San Andrés Church and proceeds west on Hidalgo until it reaches Seís Esquinas (Six Corners) and then heads back east on Ocampo. This year, in 2018, it will end at the malecón instead of the bullring.
After the parade, there might be balet folklórico dancers and mariachi or other activities before the charros invite everyone to eat lunch.
This year, in 2018, some Mexico’s best bull riding teams will visit from Michoacán and Zacatecas to put on a performance at 4:30 p.m. in the bullring. A translator will be there to translate everything from Spanish and provide background about what you are seeing.
Tickets for this event are $80 pesos presale or $100 if you buy them at the door.
You can buy tickets at Frutería Barragán on the highway in Ajijic:
Or with Beto Peréz at #39 Hidalgo in Ajijic:
In other years, when there is no paid afternoon performance, there are free events in the bullring later in the afternoon: usually a charrería exhibition and cowboy games, such as throwing darts at targets while galloping on horseback.