Colonial Mexico Trip Itineraries
My first time in Puebla
Puebla is a city of unequalled beauty, famous for its architecture, its cuisine and the wonderful volcano sight you can admire from almost anywhere in the city. If you’re still not convinced to come, then you must know that it is worldly known as the City of Angels. Legend has it angels chose and planed the city and originally, it was named Puebla de los Angeles.
But the magnificence of the city deserves that name despite the legend. Downtown Puebla is an architectural spectacle in which most of the churches, squares and little palaces seem to have been designed in heaven above. Of course not everything was made in heaven, the mexican feeling of it was made right here on earth, none of this would have an impact without the sound of the typical marimba filling every square, the sight of dozens of ballon vendors all over downtown and the noisy friendly people.
Puebla is famous for its buildings, crafts, cuisine and history. It’s filled with secrets and wonders waiting for you to discover and enjoy, and once you come, you’ll find out that the people is another reason you’ll fall in love with Puebla.
Probably the most stunning building in Puebla is the Cathedral. It was begun in 1575, and took 300 years to complete. For many centuries, a building in Puebla couldn’t be taller than the Cathedral towers, the tallest in México. The main facade, made of gray quarry, is late Baroque and Neoclassical. But the inside is also beautiful; the main altar, the 14 Miguel Cabrera medallions, the two organs and the 14 side chapels are worth visit.
Puebla is also famous for its cuisine. The sauce known as mole is Puebla’s main dish, and has become one of Mexico’s representative dishes. Another famous dish in Puebla is the Chile en Nogada, a green, red and white dish served around that time of year when mexicans celebrate the Independence from the Spaniards.
Nobody can talk about Puebla without mentioning the marvelous sight of the snow-topped volcanos surrounding the city, since Puebla is located in the middle of the Trans-Mexican volcanic belt. The two most famous volcanos, the Popocatépetl and the Iztaccíhuatl, are west of the city, and according to the legend were two lovers who turned into volcanoes and stayed as a timeless prove of love overcoming everything. The Popocatepetl is the second highest peak in Mexico and it’s not unusual to see harmless ash clouds coming out of it. Both of these volcanos, along with la Malinche, a dormant volcano north of the city, can be seen practically every day. But if you’re lucky and the sky is really clear, you’ll be able to see the tallest peak in Mexico, the Citlaltépetl, also known as Pico de Orizaba, to the east. read more about My first time in Puebla
- 16 de Septiembre at Av. Juan de Palafox y Mendoza
- Puebla, 72000
This is Puebla's heart. Here you can enjoy the marimba music, sit by a tree and just watch people walk by. There are plenty of sculptures to admire here, so just walk up and down, and I guarantee you a great time!
The Zocalo is in front of the Cathedral, so there's no way you'll miss it.
read more about Zocalo
- 2 Sur 708
- tel:(222) 229 38 50
- Visit website
- Puebla, 72000
Catedral de Puebla
- Av. 16 de Septiembre unnumbered
- Puebla, 72000
Puebla's Cathedral is the second largest in México. Its construction began in 1535 and was dedicated to the Immaculate Conception in 1649. In 1575 a new project by the architect Francisco Becerra made it larger and more elaborated. The new cathedral was completed in 1664.
Legend says that this cathedral was built following the plans for the Lima's Cathedral, in Peru, the other Viceregal Capital. But somehow, on the ship that came from Spain the plans got mixed. Maybe that is why Puebla's Cathedral is considered the most beautiful in America.
Though the exterior is austere, the interior is a marvelous spectacle of effusive decoration. It has 14 chapels, and an unusual octagonal altar, designed by Manuel Tolsá in 1797, which is the highlight of the cathedral. The dome is inspired on that of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.
The cathedral was built in a Baroque style in transition to the Neoclassical style with some Renaissance details. Its twin towers are the tallest in Mexico and from top of them the view of the city and the volcanoes is excellent.
The facade may seem austere due to the dark stone, but is decorated with statues of saints and some reliefs of four Spanish kings.
read more about Catedral de Puebla
- 6 Norte, between 2 and 4 Oriente
- Puebla, 72400
El Parian is the famous craft market established in 1801 in downtown Puebla.
It was originally intended to be a food market for the Conlonial residences, but eventually other markets closer to the Zocalo became more important and the governement decided to turn El Parian into a craft market.
It's a great place to buy Talavera, Onyx and typical mexican toys and candies. If you don't want to buy anything, this is still a great place to admire mexican creativity and crafts history.
read more about El Parian
Casa del Alfeñique
- 4 Oriente 416
- tel:(222) 232-42-96
- Puebla, 72000
This beautiful building gets its name from the stucco-work on its facade reminiscent of a meringue-type candy called "alfeñique". The legend says that a young Spanish man, Juan Ignacio Morales, fell in love with a beautiful Poblana girl who was very fond of meringue, so in order to make her marry him, he built her this house as a wedding gift. It was built in 1791 by Antonio Santamaría de Incháurriegui, an Architect graduated from the Academia de San Carlos, the most important art and architecture academy in the country at the time.
Nowadays this building houses the Regional Museum of Puebla, in which through 500 pieces the history of the city is depicted. You can also admire some period furnishings, two old carriages, a nineteenth century China Poblana dress and the family chapel among many other things.
The museum is open Tuesday thru Sunday from 10:00 to 17:00 hrs. read more about Casa del Alfeñique
Capilla del Rosario
- 5 de Mayo 409
- Puebla, 72000
Santo Domingo church houses the impressive Capilla del Rosario (Rosary Chapel). Built in 1690, the chapel is an unique example of Mexican Baroque style. Its strong ornamentation in gilded stucco and onyx stonework has amazed visitors from all over the world for centuries.
On the vault one can see the three theological virtues, according to the Catholic Church, framed by foliage. On the copula, the Grace is accompanied by the Holy Ghost and 16 saints of the Dominican Order. José Rodríguez Carnero painted the six large canvas on the wall allusive to the Virgin Mary. Many other figures, vegetation, flowers and cherubs can be found all over the golden stucco.
This magnificent church was considered the "Eight Wonder of the World" when finished. It's an superb spectacle you can't miss. read more about Capilla del Rosario