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Overview

Much as Guadalajara is the hometown of tequila, mariachi and the charro, Puebla is packed with history and items that are recognized worldwide as "classically Mexican”—from mole poblano and chiles en nogada to Talavera ceramics and Cinco de Mayo (the defeat of the French army occurred here). Puebla bustles but isn't overrun with tourists, despite the national treasures and traditions started here that tend to attract more Mexican travelers. Because most of the city's historical features are focused in the Centro Histórico, the original heart of Puebla retains the feeling of a small, colonial town. Established in 1531 along the ...

Much as Guadalajara is the hometown of tequila, mariachi and the charro, Puebla is packed with history and items that are recognized worldwide as "classically Mexican”—from mole poblano and chiles en nogada to Talavera ceramics and Cinco de Mayo (the defeat of the French army occurred here). Puebla bustles but isn't overrun with tourists, despite the national treasures and traditions started here that tend to attract more Mexican travelers. Because most of the city's historical features are focused in the Centro Histórico, the original heart of Puebla retains the feeling of a small, colonial town. Established in 1531 along the main route between Mexico City and the port of Veracruz, Puebla is ringed by volcanoes and snowy peaks, and lies at the foot of Popocatépetl, one of Mexico's most active volcanoes. Walking through the Centro Histórico, it's difficult to not be distracted by the Crayola-colored buildings, mouthwatering smells from sidewalk restaurants and ceramic tiles that glint in the sun. The center of Puebla, the Plaza de Armas (the zócalo), is lined with shade trees and dotted with benches, and attracts everyone from tourist to clown to musician. On one side of the zócalo is Puebla's neck-craning cathedral, which has the tallest church towers in Mexico.

Jill Robinson
About the Expert

Jill K. Robinson is a freelance journalist who specializes in adventure travel and culture and has written about Mexico and Central America for Frommer's and Lonely Planet.

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Jill Robinson for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Puebla is a colonial era planned city, it is located to the east of Mexico City and west of Mexico's main Atlantic port, Veracruz, on the main route between the two in Central Mexico.
  • Language: Spanish
  • Currency: Mexican Peso
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    The best time is November through April, Puebla’s dry season. The May and October shoulder months of the rainy season are also great times to visit.