Frieda Kahlo

Little Cholula, home to the world's largest pyramid!

Cholula is another of the wonderful Pueblos Mágicos that sits just outside the city of Puebla, in the state of Puebla. In fact, until recently, there was a train that traveled between Cholula and Puebla, but that train does not appear to have survived the Covid era, and its station was completely boarded up.

Cholula's historic centro has a lovely, leafy green plaza ringed with churches, restaurants, and shops. This was actually one of the finalists as I searched for a Mexican city to settle into, but it lost out to Morelia. (And while I adore the feel of Cholula, I'm glad I chose Morelia!)



Cholula Sauce

If the name Cholula seems familiar, it's most likely because of the hot sauce bearing the same name. Unfortunately, Cholula sauce isn't made in Cholula, in the same way that Tabasco sauce isn't made in Tabasco, Mexico!

What is most striking in Cholula is the Santuario Nuestra Señora de los Remedios. It sits on top of a large hill, commanding a stunning view of the landscape below. However, upon closer inspection, this "hill" isn't a hill in the normal sense; it is the overgrown remains of a spectacular pre-Hispanic pyramid. It earns the title of "world's largest pyramid" due to its base. While shorter than the Great Pyramid of Giza, the Great Pyramid of Cholula is much wider, measuring 300 by 315 meters (984 by 1,033 ft) in its final form, compared to the Great Pyramid's base dimensions of 230.3 by 230.3 meters (756 by 756 ft).

The Spaniards build the sanctuary on top of the pyramid either not knowing what it was, or knowing full well what sat below and letting the symbolism (of the Catholic Church crushing the indigenous religions) speak for itself. Recent excavations of the site reveal beautiful architectural details. The sanctuary is now a landmark in itself, so it's unlikely that the pyramid would ever be fully restored.

As always, I encourage you to make a trip to Cholula to see this incredible site!