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History of Pátzcuaro

The city of Pátzcuaro was founded in Prehispanic times by the Puhrepechan nation to serve as their civil capital. The name means City of Temples.

The military capital of the Puhrepechan nation was located in Ihuatzio and the religious capital in Tzintzuntzan. The remains of the old indigenous architecture can be seen in the pyramid located inside the building of the Primitive University of Saint Nicholas, and the black volcanic stones used in the building of many houses in the historical center.

The Patzcuaro of the present developed largely thanks to the humanitarian efforts of Don Vasco de Quiroga in the 16th century. He built hospitals, developed crop rotation systems and industries that would allow the indians to survive as an independent community and preserve their social structure, language and dignity.

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Things to do in Pátzcuaro

The colonial buildings in the city of Pátzcuaro are some of the oldest to be found in the state of Michoacán and also some of the best preserved in the county. You shouldn't miss a visit to the Palacio de Huitziméngari, Iglesia de la Compañía, the Basilica, old University Buildings and The House of Eleven Patios.

From Pátzcuaro pier, you can take a pleasure cruise across the lake to the island of Janitzio. The town is famous for its fishermen who are skilled at using their butterfly-shaped nets to catch the local cuisine "pescado blanco". The butterfly fisherman are pictured on the back of the 50 peso Mexican banknote.

At the island's highest point, there is a 40 meter high statue of José María Morelos, one of the great heroes of Mexico's war of independence, and spectacular views of the lake and surroundings.

Mexico City
Mexico City

Must see historic colonial buildings, museums, and pre-Hispanic ruins.

Pátzcuaro / Janitzio

The former indiginous capital of the Puhrepechan nation.


The Eduardo Ruiz National Park is one of the most beautiful in the country.

Monarch Butterfly
Monarch Butterfly Sanctuaries

Spectacular migrations from December to March.

San Miguel
San Miguel de Allende

One of the oldest cities in the center of the Mexican Republic.

San Miguel

Rich in colonial architecture, attractive plazas, and baroque churches.

San Miguel
Los Azufres

Hot springs and magnificent views. The ideal place to relax.

Ixtapa / Zihuatanejo

Beautiful sandy beaches, watersports, and delicious seafood.


Visit the Paricutin Volcano

Please contact us to check availability of these excursions and to make your reservations.

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