Morelia Adventure Tours
Pátzcuaro is hidden high in the mountains of Michoacán at 2,200 meters (7,130 feet) of elevation. It is veiled from the outside world by a curtain of high pine trees. To the north isLake Pátzcuaro, one of Mexico’s highest lakes. The butterfly fishermen, who dip their nets into the lake in search of whitefish, have become a trademark of Pátzcuaro.
The town retains its ancient atmosphere. It consists of largely one-story adobe or plaster-over-brick buildings with red tile roofs. The streets are dusty cobblestones traveled by horse and car. Plaza Vasco de Quiroga, known by locals as simply the Plaza Grande, is Pátzcuaro’s central square. Grass covers much of the plaza, and a statue of Vasco de Quiroga stands in its center.
On the east side of downtown is the beautiful Basilica of Our Lady of Health, the city’s patron, built between 1546 and 1554. The College of Saint Nicolas, south from the basilica, was founded by Don Vasco in 1540 and now houses the Museum of Popular Arts and Archaeology, which has exhibits of carvings, pottery, weaving, and archaeological artifacts. The Cathedral of Michoacán was built by Don Vasco and was opened in 1546. Today it is the temple of the Jesuits. The House of Eleven Patios is the former monastery of Saint Catherine, founded by Dominican nuns in 1747. It is now a center for local artisans, and you can watch them work.