Knowing we would be driving back through Mexico, I started planning the route. Traveling mainly on Mexico Highway 57 in the middle of the country again, I wanted to see some different cities than on the way down to Belize. That's when Cholula, a small village just outside of Puebla, Mexico, popped up on the radar.
I searched for lost civilizations in Mexico, and The Great Pyramid of Cholula came up as a must-see. This is one of the largest pyramids in the world, but surprisingly I had never heard of it. This goes far in showing how much the world has to offer that you would never know about unless you just go explore!
The cathedral, Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de los Remedios, sits atop the Great Pyramid of Cholula, and was built by Cortes, after tearing down the former temple. However Cortes never knew what his new church stood on top of, since the pyramid looks the same as it does today...hidden under brush and stone. Learn the history of the Cholula Pyramid here.
View of one of Mexico's two most famous volcanoes— Popocatepetl and Iztaccihuatl.
We booked one night at Hotel Villas Arquelogicas and almost immediately changed it to two nights. This place is perfect! It sits directly across the street from the Cholula Pyramid, but also within walking distance from the city center. The hotel also has archaeological discoveries sprinkled all throughout the property.
Situated in the Pilgrim's Gate of the Convent of St. Gabriel, you'll discover the Biblioteca Franciscana. This library is one of the world's oldest...I know, another of the world's oldest/largest...It has more than 24,000 volumes published between the 16th and 18th centuries. The guard there was great, allowing me to take pictures and even gave us a free gift.
For more on travel photography, go to my post Travel Photography Tips and Planning.
Although I would say Cholula, Mexico is a tourist destination, it doesn't seem to attract many international tourists. Natasha and I were the only white people around except for one other lady we saw on top of the Cholula Pyramid. It seems most of the tourists come from other Mexican cities, and this may be why I had never heard of any of the beautiful sites this city has to offer. And it has plenty!!!