Patio de los Altares


Ringed by platforms and unique diagonal stairways, this plaza was the main approach to Cholula's pyramid. Three large stone slabs on its east, north and west sides are carved in the Veracruz interlocking scroll design. At its south end is an Aztec-style altar in a pit, dating from shortly before the Spanish conquest. On the mound’s west side is a reconstructed section of the latest pyramid, with two earlier exposed layers.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Cholula attractions

1. Zona Arqueológica

0.11 MILES

Located two blocks to the southeast of Cholula’s central plaza, the Pirámide Tepanapa looks more like a hill than a pyramid and has a domed church on top…

3. Pirámide Tepanapa

0.14 MILES

The incredible Pirámide Tepanapa looks more like a hill than a pyramid, but it's still the town's big draw, and with miles of tunnels veining the inside…

4. Museo de Sitio de Cholula

0.26 MILES

This small, well-maintained museum, across the road from the Pirámide Tepanapa ticket office and down some steps, provides the best introduction to the…

5. Capilla de la Tercera Orden

0.43 MILES

In the middle of Cholula's huge zócalo is the 19th-century Capilla de la Tercera Orden. The church forms part of the Ex-Convento de San Gabriel.

6. Templo de San Gabriel

0.46 MILES

The Templo de San Gabriel was founded in 1529 on the site of a pyramid and the ruins of a temple dedicated to Quetzalcóatl. The exterior is partially…

7. Capilla Real de Naturales

0.46 MILES

The Arabic-style Capilla Real has 49 domes and dates from 1540. The mosque-inspired design makes the yellow church unique to Mexico and creates a…

8. Ex-Convento de San Gabriel

0.47 MILES

The Ex-Convento de San Gabriel (also known as Plaza de la Concordia), facing the east side of Cholula's huge zócalo, includes a tiny but interesting…