This small church is located at the Historic centre, between Corregidora and Ave. Peralta, it's small, not really an historic place but is really beautiful, the interior it's worth of a visit, I only could take pictures of exterior because they were celebrating mases at the moment.
Located at the heart of the Historic centre, in front of temple of San Francisco. Build in 1874 and named after the founder of it Don NBenito Santos Zenea the gobernor of Queretaro at the time. I a beautiful garden for a family walk, you will find the typical cotton candies and Ballon sellers for the little ones, and a nice fountain to enjoy a peaceful evening.
This was the first religious building in Queretaro in 1540. THe temple was the city cathedral from 1865- 1922. Today is the Museo Refional de Queretaro.
Open Tuesday-Sunday 10:00-18:00hrs
Cost: 37 pesos
We really enjoyed this tour. They provide tours in English. Ours was given by a resident American priest who was very informative. It was never a convent for nuns. It is an active seminary for priests. The architecture is interesting, especially insights on how the water was fed in to the place from the aqueduct, also the thorn bushes that grow thorns in the shape of a bush. A few interesting art pieces.
No admission fee, donations encouraged
A bit of the history from an article by Toni Dabbs called "Queretaro, Mexico:
A colonial gem in a modern setting" :
On a guided tour of Convento de la Santa Cruz, visitors can see a clay pipe system developed to receive water from the Aqueduct and distribute it throughout the monastery.
Established in the 16th century, Convento de la Santa Cruz stands on a former battleground atop a hill overlooking the old town, where the apparition of St. James on horseback convinced Otomi Indians to surrender to the conquistadors. Other miracles associated with the site include trees with cross-shaped thorns grown from a cane stuck in the ground by pious friar Antonio Margil de Jesus in 1697.
By the end of the 17th century, Convento de la Santa Cruz operated the first Catholic missionary school in the Americas, and it continues to serve as a religious school today.
The monastery also functioned as a fortress when forces loyal to Emperor Maximilian occupied it near the end of the Mexican War of Independence. Maximilian used it as his headquarters from February to May 1867. After his surrender and subsequent death sentence, he was confined at Convento de la Santa Cruz while he awaited the firing squad.
The dramatic arches of the aquaduct that provided sustinence to this great city for so many years are a source of pride for the locals. The best view point is at the "Mirador" at the end of Independencia.
Very impressive architecture. If you only go to a few churches here, this should be one. There is a beautiful plaza in front of the church.
From an article by Toni Dabbs called "Queretaro, Mexico
A colonial gem in a modern setting:"
Templo de Santa Rosa de Viterbo, a tall and stately church completed in 1752, is considered the crowning achievement of Ignacio Mariano de las Casas, an architect who left his mark throughout Queretaro. The unusual design incorporates inverted flying buttresses, each decorated with an impish mask sticking out its tongue.
Its interior is a Churrigueresque showcase, including: superbly carved retablos and confessional; pulpit inlaid with silver, ebony and ivory; life-size figures of the apostles at the Last Supper; Baroque organ, built in 1759 and still in use; and mural by Tresguerras depicting St. Rose of Viterbo surrounded by her nuns.
Okay, after you have OD'd on tacos, tortas and the mundane Mexican fare (sorry, but it IS) take yourself down to Avenida de los Arcos (Aquaductos) and try out these spots: Summo (I think its called) It is a BRIGHT RED decorated restaurant that offers, salads, seafood, steak and spicy Thai noodles with chicken! The cute owner runs from table to table visiting his guests. Also check out, mod bar Soleo. It blasts Eurpean style lounge music (a welcome change from 80s pop and polka) and is located on the 2nd floor of a catering business. The bar/restaurant has open window views of Querétaro at night. I had several drinks and an appetizer which were ALL good.
Harry's Bar in downtown Queretaro (el centro) serves up a cheeseburger with coleslaw (that was mediocre) but the mojitos were OUTSTANDING. They also have crabcakes, chicken wings and other American fare on the menu.
I'll add more at a later date.
This museum was really fascinating and worth the time. It is a resored colonial home with period furshings, but what makes it even more intriguing is the story of the wife who hired someone to kill her husband then killed herself and the executor of the crime, the story being left as a mystery. They show a video in Spanish that is nicely done before touring the house on your own. It's great to see how the rich Spanish lived here, mainly with imprted European furnishings. 20 Pesos Admisson. See website for opening hours. Allow about 45 m--1 hr. to visit.
Every Sunday evening in one or two of the main plazas in El Centro are comedy shows. They are impressive and so energetic. They were one of my Sunday highlights. Families and people of all ages gather round for a time to laugh and enjoy the fun these guys generate. Everyone needs a good dose of laughter at least once a week!
There is no cost except you can toss your pesos into the hat they pass around at the end of the show.
This is the central Plaza in Queretaro. Let me just say though, it is just one of many very lively plazas in the city. There is literally always something going on here. In the evenings there is always free entertaininment that comes in many forms. All day on Saturday and Sunday there are performers. On Thursday and Saturday night they had big bands playing basically ballroom music for public dancing in the park - Literally hundreds of people walzting and fox trotting under the stars in the beautiful gardens. The bandstand was covered with scaffolding during our visit, but it didn't stop the music. I would really urge people to spend time in the area, enjoying the "culture" of the plaza. It's all home grown, filled with upper-middle class Mexicans enjoying their city, very much family entertainment with kids everywhere till all hours of the night. At the same time extremely safe.
Welcome to the "food court" - not really, but about 9 restaurants line the circumfrence of this lively plaza. It is always busy as it is the start of Andodore (Pedestrian walkway) 16 de September that connects it to Plaza de Armas. There is usually free entertainment at night, family type entertainers, performance art, acrobatics, and the like, very entertaining though! Sitting in any of the restaurants in this plaza and watching the local crowds is entertaining it itself.
Los Miradores, or lookout points. are a must see in Queretaro. There are acutally several places around Queretaro where you can get a great view of the whole city. My favorite spot was atop a small mountain near the colonia Lomas (Hills). It is not a huge tourist spot, but a good place to hang out and have a beer and look at the amazing view. The Arcos/ Aguaduct looks awesome from this view and I visited this spot several times with different friends and my brother when they came down to visit me. Drinking is not allowed here since it is considered a public place, and I don't condone it, but as a young guy I would frequently have some "caguamas" here and enjoy the breathtaking view.
Esta monumental obra civil que consta de 74 arcos impresionantes, fue construida entre 1726 y 1738 . La arquería del Acueducto mide 1,280 metros de longitud, y corre el caño sobre la arquería a una altura máxima de 23 metros. En aquel tiempo uno de los más graves males que aquejaban a la ciudad, era la falta de agua potable, lo cual producía enfermedades hídricas muy serias que provocaban muchas muertes. Fue entonces con este acueducto como la hermana agua, limpia, pura y clara, como habla de ella San Francisco de Asís en su célebre Canto al Hermano Sol, llegó a nuestra prócer ciudad.
"¿Quién no siente la pureza de sus líneas arquitectónicas que le dan la seguridad de un puente sólido tendido entre lo finito y lo infinito?.¿Quién no capta que la armonía de los contrastes nos hace experimentar la anchura y la longitud, la profundidad y la alteza del misterio del amor y la belleza de que habla San Agustín en su obra inmortal, "La ciudad de Dios"?. ¿A quién no arroba en éxtasis de plegarias ese vaivén de combinación en los dibujos de filigrana que se hace sutil voluta perfumada de incienso?". Incuestionablemente que lo que escribió el P. Navarrete del Convento de San Agustín de Querétaro, es eso y más, porque si pudo embelesarlo con lo que queda de su pretérita grandeza en el exterior del templo y el imponderable claustro, hoy Museo de Arte de Querétaro, ¿cómo sería en sus interiores donde los retablos eran, según las crónicas, lo más acabado y exquisito del barroco del siglo XVIII?.
Propiedad de don Tomás López de Ecala, español a quien le fascinaba la arquitectura y constantemente le cambiaba la fachada a su casa, pero siempre se salía una vara de la banqueta, hasta que su vecino, don Domingo Hernández Iglesias le reta a un juicio y a que quien perdiera tendría que cerrar su balcón principal, lo que era la peor ofensa en esos tiempos.