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Set in the pretty, fertile highlands of Michoacán near Lago de Pátzcuaro, Pátzcuaro is a serene and beautiful colonial town. The area is home to the creative Purépecha, descendants of the pre-Hispanic Tarascans. One of the delights of a visit is to explore their villages dotted around Lago de Pátzcuaro and to seek out the best handicrafts. These handicrafts infiltrate the city's shops and markets too. The Casa de Los Once Patios (House of the 11 patios), an 18th century Dominican convent, is full of shops selling folk art. Pátzcuaro's gorgeous central plazas have historical connections - Plaza ...

Set in the pretty, fertile highlands of Michoacán near Lago de Pátzcuaro, Pátzcuaro is a serene and beautiful colonial town. The area is home to the creative Purépecha, descendants of the pre-Hispanic Tarascans. One of the delights of a visit is to explore their villages dotted around Lago de Pátzcuaro and to seek out the best handicrafts. These handicrafts infiltrate the city's shops and markets too. The Casa de Los Once Patios (House of the 11 patios), an 18th century Dominican convent, is full of shops selling folk art. Pátzcuaro's gorgeous central plazas have historical connections - Plaza Vasco de Quiroga is named for the Catholic bishop who bettered local conditions after the bloody Spanish conquest. The Basílica de Nuestra Señora de la Salud displays an image of the Virgin made from a corncob and honey paste - she's said to work miracles and crowds come on their knees to enlist her help. Día de Los Muertos is celebrated with great fervor in Pátzcuaro, especially on the lake's Isla Janitzio which becomes swamped with visitors.

John Noble
About the Expert

John Noble is a coauthor of Lonely Planet's Spain, Andalucia, and Mexico as well as many other LP titles from Indonesia to Belize to Brazil.

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Pátzcuaro is a large town and municipality located in the state of Michoacán.
  • Language: Spanish
  • Currency: Mexican Peso
  • Research: Wikitravel | Wikipedia
  • Weather: Daylight | Rainfall

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    For one of the main fiestas: Día de los Muertos (Nov 2), Semana Santa (Easter week), Nuestra Señora de la Salud (Nov 8)