The town of Cholula in central Mexico was an important economic and religious center long before the Spanish arrived to the Americas. Known for its Great Pyramid, hundreds of churches and close to Popocatépetl – Mexico’s second-highest mountain – Cholula has become a popular destination to visit. Here’s our round-up of the best things to see and do in town.
Cholula’s Great Pyramid is what puts this small town outside of Puebla State’s capital on the map. Known as Tlachihualtepetl, its base is the widest in the Americas, but only one staircase on one side this pyramid has been excavated – due to the fact that the Spanish built a church right on top of it. You can visit the archaeological site that surrounds the pyramid though, with several other interesting structures, and even take a walk through the pyramid’s tunnels. There is a small museum that you can wander through and get a complete picture of this area’s importance to ancient Mesoamerica.
The Francisco Peláez Roldan Botanical Garden is an educational space – come to get the lowdown on regional plants, their uses and their history. The garden works to conserve endemic plants, birds and insects of the Cholula area and you’ll find classes on soap-making as well as creating edible flowers and perfumes.
For a more off-the-beaten path experience, head to the Museo de la Sidra (Cider Museum) to learn about the history and production of one of the State of Puebla’s most well-known refreshments – apple cider. You can visit the winery where both reds and whites are produced and learn how the company Copa de Oro started out making sodas and liquors in the early 1900s before moving onto sparkling ciders and wine. There is a tasting room if you fancy a dash of bubbly.
Alex Robinson contributed additional reporting to this article.