Historic Center of Puebla, World Heritage Site (Mexico)

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Historic Center of Puebla, World Heritage Site (Mexico)

Tue, 12/04/2018 - 17:19
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Puebla’s strategic location, on a major transportation corridor, permitted the exportation of its regional style of Baroque architecture. The urban design of the historic center, based on a Renaissance grid plan, has exerted a considerable influence on the creation of colonial cities across Mexico.

Historic Center of Puebla

The Historic Center of Puebla is composed of major religious buildings such as the Cathedral, the churches of Santo Domingo, San Francisco, and the Jesuit Church. In addition, there are superb palaces such as the old archbishop’s palace, the Palafox Library, the university, and many houses whose walls are covered with gaily colored tiles (azulejos).

The city of Puebla de los Ángeles was founded in 1531, following Spain’s regal recommendations to not take possession of indigenous territories. The original city "Ciudad de los Angeles" was laid out according to a Renaissance urban grid formed by rectangular squares laid out in a northeast-southeast orientation.

The city is situated in the Valley of Cuetlaxcoapan at the foot of one of Mexico’s highest volcanoes, known as Popocatepetl. It commands a strategic location on the commercial and cultural trade route between the Port of Veracruz to the east and Mexico City, approximately 60 km (100 mi) to the northwest. This location allowed Puebla to be an important intermediate point and a core part of the Atlantic axle for over two centuries.

Many buildings from the 16th and 17th century have survived. These include the university, founded in 1587 as Colegio del Espíritu Santo, major religious structures such as the Cathedral (dating from 1575), and fine buildings like the former archbishop's palace. The Palafox Library, established in 1646, is credited with being the first library in the Americas.

Some of the features of this historic city center include:

  • Barrio de los Sapos
  • Barrio del Artista
  • Biblioteca Palafoxiana
  • Casa de la Cultura
  • Chapel of the Rosario
  • Church of La Compañía
  • Church of las Capuchinas
  • Church of San Cristóbal
  • Church of San Juan de Dios
  • Church of San Pedro
  • Church of Santo Domingo
  • El Parián
  • Hospital Church of San Roque
  • Maqueta del Centro de Puebla
  • Municipal Hall of Puebla
  • Parish of Santa Clara
  • Puebla Cathedral
    • Ángeles testigos de la Beatificación de Juan de Palafox y Mendoza
  • Teatro Principal de Puebla
    • Bust of Plácido Domingo
    • Statue of Héctor Azar