Mesa Sister City:

Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico


Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico was selected as Mesa’s first Sister City in 1981 for several reasons. Then-Governor Bruce Babbit was strongly encouraging all Arizona cities to form sister city relationships with a city in Sonora, Mexico as part of his program to promote greater understanding and increased trade between Arizona and Sonora. Guaymas, like Mesa, is the third largest city in the state.

Guaymas is located about 250 miles south of the United States border on the Sea of Cortez (Gulf of California) and is accessible by car (and 8-9 hour drive, or by air (a direct 1-hour flight). The city is home to more than 200,000 people. Guaymas, in addition to its active seaport, is known for its water recreation opportunities. A resort area, San Carlos, has been developed about 15 kilometers northwest of Guaymas, and attraces visitors to its beaches, marinas, and hotels.

Guaymas is Mesa’s most active Sister City, due to the proximity of the two communities. For many years, the City of Mesa and Mesa Sister City Association have sponsored a float in Guaymas’ annual Carnival parade, and have sent a delegation to take part in festivities.

Invitations are routinely exchanged between both governments when new leaders are inaugurated. Individual Sister Cities members have hosted exchange students, delivered medical and school supplies requested by Guaymas and supported by the Casa Franciscana Outreach.

Since 1993, there have been efforts on the part of both communites to include economic development in the relationship. Mesa’s Economic Devlopent has plaed an active role in patching groups of Guaymas business representtives with local business interests in Mesa. With the passage of NAFTA, there continues to be a strong interest in strengthening business ties between the two communities. The Mesa Convention and Vistitors Bureau has also focused on increasing tourism between Mesa and Guaymas/San Carlos, as well as encouraging Canadian winter visitors who are interested in Mexico to consider a San Carlos visit if they go.

For more information on activities of the Guaymas Committee, contact Mary Vardian at 480-318-3558 or by email.