Our “Five Civilizations” circuit tour kicked off from Mexico City on the 12nd of September and made its way through the Yucatan peninsula.
On the second day of the tour the tourists visited the main attractions of Mexico City – the National Palace Museum of Anthropology and located near Teotihuacan, a former political and cultural capital of Mesoamerica for eight centuries.
On the third day the group left Mexico City and went to Puebla, is a UNESCO World Heritage site and colonial era-planned city founded by the Spaniards from the ground up in 1531, just ten years after the conquest of Mexico. Is located it is located southeast of Mexico City and west of Mexico’s main port, Veracruz, on the main route between the two.
Immediately after arriving at the central square, they headed towards the cathedral, whose construction lasted neither much nor few 115 years – from 1575 at 1690. Rumor has it that its towers are the highest in all of Latin America.
As you see, the interior of the cathedral no less impressive than its façade. It contains many artistic artifacts that are found in its 14 lateral chapels and the main altar.
Then we headed towards one of the shopping streets, called “Sweet Street”, where you can buy typical souvenirs of Puebla – local poblano sweets.
Once inside, you can choose among dozens of confections to please your palate, from camotes (fruit-flavored sweet potato “cigars”), borrachitos (tequila-infused gum drops), and candied fruits to muéganos (of various kinds), tortitas de Santa Clara (shortbread-like rounds iced with a pepita glaze), polvorones (sometimes known as Mexican wedding cookies) and much more.
Soon after its foundation, Puebla was well known for its fine ceramics, especially for the style that would be called Talavera. This has been due to the abundance of quality clay in the region, drawing some of the best artisans. Between 1550 and 1570, Spanish potters from Talavera de la Reina in Spain came to Puebla to teach the locals European techniques of using the potter’s wheel and tin-glazing. These new methods were mixed with native designs to give rise to what became known as Poblano Talavera.
Pueblan Talavera is one of the world’s select “Denominacion de Origen”, a geographic designation reserved for agricultural and food products of distinct characteristics owed to an exclusive area (like tequila from Tequila, vanilla from Papantla, Champagne from France, Pisco from Peru).
Several of our tourists were so impressed with this type of pottery, they decided to buy a few cups and mugs as souvenirs from this trip.
Then the group, led by a guide Natalia Altabaeva, marched into one of the main attractions of Puebla – The Church of Santo Domingo, located on 5 de Mayo Street. The main portal is of pure classic style finished in gray cantera stone. It consists of three levels with paired Doric-like columns. The façade of the old monastery is highly decorated in Baroque style.
Upon entering you’ll find that the church is a masterpiece of baroque architecture and decoration. The grandiose altarpiece of the main altar, the spectacular onyx pulpit, and the sumptuous plasterwork and gold leaf contribute to the extravagant decor that characterizes Mexican baroque style. The Capilla del Rosario (Rosary Chapel), on the south side of the church’s main altar, is the most magnificent aspect of this church’s interior. Ornate sculptures, masterful paintings and extravagant gold leaf cover every inch of the walls and ceiling of the Rosary Chapel, creating a dazzling effect. This chapel is undoubtedly one of the finest examples of baroque art in Mexico.
After this short tour of Puebla, tourists were offered a couple of hours of free time. In the afternoon, they will go to the city of Oaxaca, and the way forward to the Yucatan Peninsula.
The next time the participants of the Five Civilizations tour will be in Puebla on October 28, 2016 – hurry up with booking.