|The city of Querétaro is now the capital of its state bearing the same name. But way before the Mexican Independence, Querétaro played a pivotal role in the development of the area. It was one of the first (and most important) settlement where both Spaniards and local population lived together. It's this co-habitation and the extraordinary preservation of this city built in the 16th century that is recognized by the UNESCO in 1996.|
established in 1531, it was a joint settlement where the Spaniards
built their rectangular grid city with plazas (very few hills to come
change the plans this time, as opposed to other cities in the area)
and the natives (mostly the Otomi but also the tarasco and the
Chichimeca) lived in the immediate surroundings of the Spanish grid
plans, building little curvy streets.
made of Querétaro a unique example of co-habitation between the
cultures and that was done in a peaceful manner (because the local
leaders had adopted the Christian faith). The city was also at a
cross-point of important East-West and North-South routes for
commerce, including the famous Silver Road coming from Zacatecas and
UNESCO site name is a bit confusing. Normally, it should have been
something like “Historic centre of Querétaro” or something
similar... but instead, it's “Historic Monuments Zone of
Querétaro”, which also means the historic Centro... because all
the 'monuments' are in that area. By 'monuments', understand yes,
statues and monuments, but also buildings. All of them contribute to
making it a historical location.
also played an important role in Mexican history, at various eras.
First, it was one of the centres of the rebellion that led to the
Mexican independence in 1810. It was also the Capital of the country
on two brief occasions, including during the American invasion in
1847. That's also where the 1917 constitution was signed ending the
of the monuments within the area are dedicated to the Mexican heroes
of those important chapters... and are part of the UNESCO site.