Plaza of the Three Cultures (Tlatelolco)

Experience an unexpected blending of prehispanic, Viceregal and modern cultures, all situated on a single plaza. Once the site of an important ceremonial center and bustling pre-Colombian marketplace, Tlatelolco was conquered by its neighbors in 1473, only to be destroyed with the arrival of the Conquistadores.  This is where Cuauhtemoc was captured by the Spanish in 1521, thus, the site where the Aztec empire fell to the hands of the Spaniards.

We will also visit a baroque 17th century church, the courtyard of a school built by early Franciscan friars for elite Indians, and walk through  several layers of prehispanic pyramids currently enveloped by a modern high-rise complex.  We end our tour at the on-site museum (displaying recently excavated burials and artifacts) and  second museum with an array of Rodolfo Stavenhagen’s private collection of pieces culled from around Mesoamerica. Join us as we comb the area, making sense of the layers of previous and contemporary cultures.

Ironically, the Plaza of the Three Cultures was also the site of devastating student protests in 1968 (there is a third museum dedicated to this social uprising on site) and the tragic 1985 earthquake which claimed the lives of thousands.

A visit to the archaeological zone, church and two on-site museums takes approximately 3 hours.